Airkit is a low code platform that streamlines the process of building out digital customer experiences.
Here's how to get started!
Access the platform
All of the tools required to build apps in Airkit are available in our online console. If you already have access to an Airkit account, you can sign in here; otherwise, you'll need to sign up for a free trial to make an account and access the Airkit platform.
Once logged in, you will be taken to the Airkit Console. This part of the platform allows you to configure application resources, connect external integrations, and access all applications that have been created within the relevant Organization. Upon first getting started, no such applications will exist. You can create your first one by clicking the Create New button on the upper right of the Apps page in the Console, naming your app (each app stored within an organization requires a unique name), and clicking on the Create button to the lower right:
Note that upon creating an app, you will be taken directly to the Airkit Studio, the interface where Airkit apps are built and edited. Specifically, you will be taken to the Journey Builder, which provides a big-picture view of how the component pieces of an app fit together. This is just one of many Builders – interfaces that allow you to construct and edit different components of apps – available in the Studio. For more information on the different Builders and their separate functionalities, see Introduction to the Builder Bar.
Build your first app
To build your first Airkit app, follow the tutorial provided by AK101: Building Your First App in Airkit. This tutorial exists in two mediums: a video and a written tutorial, both of which cover the same material. Feel free to go through both, use either exclusively, or to supplement one with the other – whatever is most conducive to your learning style.
If you want to review or dive deeper into any of the concepts covered in AK101, check out the AK101 Study Guide.
Once you've familiarized yourself with the Airkit basics, you can start exploring the rest of the platform. Where exactly you begin depends on your needs and interests, so we've provided seven modules to help you get started:
- Styling and UI Customizations
- Connect to External Systems
- Voice Bots and Chat Bots
- Kitcloud Templates
Feel free to explore these modules in any order; while they all assume a basic familiarity with the contents of AK101 (again, check out the AK101 Study Guide if you want to review any material from that), each module does not require familiarity with any of the others.
Styling and UI Customizations
Airkit Studio provides the tools not only to change the appearance of each individual Web Control you add to a web app, it also allows you to make stylistic changes that apply to your app as a whole, making it easier to build an aesthetically consistent application. Here are two ways to explore going about that.
- Making changes to default variants in the Theme Builder provides a way to change the default appearance of every web control. This blog post is a good place to start if you want to begin experimenting with the capabilities of Theme Builder.
- Creating an App Header (or footer!) allows you to build something that appears at the top (or bottom!) of every web page within your application.
Connect to External Systems
- To get started, follow the tutorial provided by AK102: Connecting your Contact Form to Salesforce to integrate the application you build in AK101 with your Salesforce account.
- This will familiarize you with the fundamentals of connecting your Airkit apps to external systems (not just Salesforce).
Airkit’s ability to integrate with other systems is incredibly versatile.
- For some ideas as to how they might be used, check out Integration Examples.
- For a more detailed dive into how to integrate external systems with Airkit, check out Setting Up Integrations.
Voice Bots and Chat Bots
In addition to streamlining the process of building web apps, Airkit also makes it easy to build out Chat Bots and Voice Bots, which automate text and phone conversations, respectively. These conversations, like any Web Flows you build out, are part of your user’s Journey and have access to the same scopes of variables as well as information stored in AirData.
- If you attach a Chat Bot or a Voice Bot (via the Start Chat Bot Action or the Start Voice Bot Action, respectively) to a timer, you can schedule follow-up calls or texts for some designated time in the future.
- You can use Chat Bots or Voice Bots to deflect incoming calls or texts by responding with a text containing a link to a self-service web app.
- This is a particularly common use case for our call center clients.
- For a high-level discussion of how you might want to approach Chat Bots or Voice Bots, check out Your Phone Numbers in Airkit.
- For a deeper dive into how to connect a phone number to a Chat Bot or Voice Bot (a crucial component of publishing an app), check out Connecting your Twillio Numbers to Airkit.
KitCloud provides pre-configured and customizable templates that can be used as building blocks to accelerate the development of app building. What Web Controls are to web pages, KitCloud templates are to large, complicated application flows.
When you want to display repeating elements stored in a List, you can use a repeater to display them all, even if the exact number of elements in a list is unknown, or the exact number of elements in the List might change – such as, for instance, if the List is generated by input gathered by users, or pulled from an external system. The article Repeating Elements in Forms provides a more detailed walkthrough of how to display information stored in a List.
Web Flows can be opened not only as part of a linear path forward, but as a modal: a pop-up window that must be completed before returning to the page that opened it. This is useful for, for instance, creating confirmation screens or for building a flow wherein users fill out some necessary piece of information before returning directly to where they were before. Modals can also be accessed via a button placed in an App Header (or footer, see above), if there is a Modal you want users to be able to access all throughout their web journey.
In order to open a Web Flow as a modal, it must be:
Note that it is Web Flows that can be opened as modals, not individual Web Pages.
Portals are dashboards that make it possible to view and edit data stored in Airdata without accessing anything under the hood. Most Portals are built out for use by teammates that have been assigned the role of Agent, which does not grant them permission to work within Airkit Studio proper. Work with Portals if you want to build not only an app, but an interface that streamlines the process of interacting with the data your app gathers.
See The Capabilities of Portals for more information on where to begin.
Publish and deploy
Once you're happy with your application, you can publish it and share it with the world. Note that this is not a feature associated with our free trial – if you've built an app as part of your free trial that you now want to publish, contact your Airkit representative to change the nature of your account.
If you already have access to Airkit's app publishing functionality, check out Publishing Your Application and Connecting Your Domain to Airkit for a closer look at how to ensure your app is properly configured for deployment.
Any questions? Don't hesitate to reach out!
It's our mission to make app-building easy and accessible for everyone. If you have any questions at all, feel free to reach out to your Airkit representative. We also offer regular Community Office Hours: sign up here if you want to connect with our Developer Advocate team, ask questions about the Airkit platform, share your app-building experiences.