The Code Widget Gets a Facelift
If you’re ever looking to add custom code to a campaign, the Code Widget has you covered. Now, the Code Widget looks and operates even better than ever! When adding a Code Widget to your campaign, you’ll now start in the Library section of the settings – this allows you to more easily start with one of our public snippets, or a private one that you’ve saved. In addition, the text editor now has a handy menu bar that makes commands (and their keyboard shortcuts) way more accessible.
ShortStack For Teams: Invites Get a Smoother Flow
Jumping into a ShortStack team is now a smoother process, in a few different ways! First; if you click on an expired Accept Invite link, you’ll now get a clearer error message letting you know what needs to be done to move forward. When you click a valid link, you’ll now see the team name you’re being invited to and your email address will be pre-populated – alleviating any possible confusion. Then, once the sign-up process is completed, the new team member will automatically be logged in to the team account (instead of having to switch teams). We hope you enjoy the new, less headache-inducing process!
The Style Panel: Reorganized!
The Style Panel has been reorganized to put more emphasis on styling individual widgets in your campaign. When you select a widget in the Campaign Builder, the This tab will be displayed in the Style Panel. Almost all the settings that are available in the All tabs are available now in the This tabs. There is also a new link that appears at the bottom (if any changes have been made) that allows you to clear all the settings for a particular widget. The All tabs have been consolidated with the General tab into a single Theme tab. When you click on the Theme tab, there is a blue dropdown for changing which widget type you want to work with. For more help navigating the “new” Style Panel, check out this handy video!
Making It Snappy! (The Campaign Builder, that is…)
An attempt has been made to ease some pain points for larger campaigns, or campaigns where multiple folks are editing at once – trying to reduce the lag or wait times when loading or changing campaigns. It will be most noticeable when two (or more) people are working on a large campaign. Before, they’d notice heavy lag times when someone else updated the same campaign, and it would just pause with no indication of what was happening. Now, this pause will be much shorter and hopefully less painful; in addition, if a pause does end up being longer, a loading screen will display to let you know what’s happening.
A New Tool in the Action Widget’s Arsenal
The Action Widget has been updated to include a new action: You can now show or hide an Entry Display Widget’s voting button through an action! This will not allow a user to get a vote through using an Entry Display Widget that doesn’t have voting enabled, or when voting is enabled but it’s currently outside of the date range; we’ve added a handy tooltip to remind you of that when you set it up.
Travel Zones Less Confusing
We’ve now simplified how the Campaign Builder handles time zones in a campaign! (*wild applause*) For all new campaigns, a new campaign time zone will be configured automatically. The ability to change a specific widget’s time zone has been removed, and in its place is now the ability to change the campaign’s time zone. When editing the time zone in an existing widget, you will see the time change in the Builder in real time. This should remove any doubt on what time a Container Widget shows/hides, or when an Entry Display Widget starts/stops their voting process.
Note: The Instant Win feature is unaffected by these changes and will still have the ability to change its time zones separately from the campaign. This will be updated at some point in the future.
Social Importing: Get Specific-er
ShortStack’s social importing feature now has the option to grab only comments submitted during a specific date range! This is for comments only (Facebook doesn’t provide timestamps for reactions), and setting a specific date range won’t be a required part of the process – just a nice new option.
Email Dashboard Gets Faster
If you use the Emails feature of ShortStack a TON, this will be music to your ears: For some folks, the emails dashboard would load super slowly because it was counting every email ever sent from the account. The metrics have been changed, so now the dashboard only shows email results from the past four weeks – this leads to much, much quicker load times (and an email database that cries tears of joy)!
Template Galleries: An Update
Now that our Builder has officially been split in twain (one version for S1, and a separate version for S2), some changes have been made to the Template Gallery to reflect this split. If your account only has access to one version of the Campaign Builder – you will be linked to the corresponding version of the Template Gallery. If you have access to both, the default will now be S2; the Campaign button on the Dashboard and the New Campaign button in the Campaigns Manager will bring up the S2 Template Gallery. You will see a new link in the Campaigns Manager (“legacy templates”) that will bring you to the S1 Templates Manager. There is also a link in the bottom-right of the S2 Templates Gallery that will allow you to toggle to S1, if needed.
We at ShortStack do recommend using S2 templates, as those will always have the most up-to-date features and widgets.
We Encrypt At Rest!
In news that security-minded users will be excited about: After digging in and doing a bit of research, we found that we’ve been encrypting our data at rest all along! For more detailed information, reach out to Adam using the calendar on our Contact Sales page.
Announcing: The Image Editor Widget!
ShortStack’s new Image Editor Widget is live! This widget allows your visitors to perform limited actions on an image that they’ve uploaded as part of an entry. This initial version of the widget includes the abilities to crop, flip, rotate, and add a frame to the images – as well as a handy undo button to undo changes. These actions can be re-arranged and enabled/disabled from the widget settings. For more information on this snazzy new widget, check out our Image Editor Widget help doc.
Note: This new widget is only available on the Agency Plan or higher.
Instant Win + QR Codes = Perfect Match
We’ve now added a merge code to emails that can generate a URL that will display an Instant Win prize code as a QR code! This will typically be used with an autoresponder in an Instant Win campaign, or when sending prize codes to a list. When the entrant receives the email and clicks the link, they’ll see a page appear with their prize code and the associated QR code, ready to be scanned by a POS scanner. Handy!
Custom Domain Validation: Some Clarification
Just a heads up: ShortStack will not generate a certificate for SSL (so that https works) for custom domains until that domain appears in our database by way of a published campaign. For example, if you point your custom domain to our S2 IP address and try to test it in your browser before publishing a campaign – you’ll see an error in your browser. This is because the validation check will fail since we don’t have the domain in our database. Once you’ve added the domain to your account by publishing a campaign to it, the validation check will succeed and a certificate will be issued. This is an update on our prior process of issuing a certificate as soon as a browser request came in.
Let There Be Zero Votes!
Before; if you wanted to reset the live votes on a campaign, you had to go into each individual entry’s details and do a vote adjustment. Ugh. Now, though – it’s easy! We have a new “Reset Votes” button in the Entries Manager – this allows you to quickly reset the vote totals to zero for any entries currently showing in the manager. Give it a try next time you need to start votes from scratch.
New Code Widget Setting: Bots Only
When a search engine bot/spider attempts to crawl a live campaign, ShortStack normally only includes Open Graph Meta Tags in the output sent to that bot. Until now, there was no way to send custom content to the bots. Now, Code Widgets have a new setting called “Show content to bots only” in the Placement section of the widget settings. This setting only appears for Code Widgets that are NOT inside of any other containers. When this setting is enabled, the Code Widget will only be included in the HTML sent to the bots – it won’t be included in the live campaign when viewed by our human eyeballs. This setting will come in especially handy for including custom meta tags, such as those required by Facebook Ads for custom domain verification.
Now: Copy An Entry – Get ALL Of The Fields!
Any entries copied to a new list will now include all custom field data, including images – as long as you’re filtered to a single list when making the copies! This is a huge upgrade from before, where only standard fields could be copied over. Entries copied in this way will only display properly in S2 campaigns. The copied entries will have a vote count of zero, even if the original entries had votes – this can be turned off, if desired.
Changes to Analytics Data Retention
An under-the-hood update to note – we will now only keep the last two years of Analytics data for all ShortStack users. A fun behind-the-scenes fact: This decision was made to keep our database size from growing too large, as (by far) Analytics data takes up more room on our servers than any other data we store! We have added a handy little reminder note to the Analytics dialogue that will appear when you choose custom dates to display.
Webhook Integrations Get MORE POWER! (…kinda)
A minor update: An entry’s referral URL is now available as a field to use when setting up mapping for webhook integrations. This will pull – you guessed it – the entry’s referral URL into your third-party app of choice when the integration grabs the entry data.
Keeping Instant Winners From Winning Too Much
There are now more options available when setting up Instant Win! These new settings allow you to restrict repeat winners, so the same person or people are not eating up all of your available prizes. You can restrict winners (using their email address) for every X number of seconds, minutes, hours, or calendar days.
“Where’d my ‘Days’ go?”
“Days” will no longer be an option when setting up voting restrictions in campaigns. S2 campaigns will still have the “Calendar Days” option, and existing campaigns with the “Days” option set up for restriction will still work just fine – using the option in new S1 campaigns moving forward will not be available. Anything set up as “Days” will be converted to “Hours” (for example, 1 day = 24 hours).
“Any” Widget Triggers Sneak Into The Builder
In S2 templates, Action Widgets now have the option of enabling an “Any” trigger! For example, if you have multiple Video Widgets and want something to be triggered when any of the videos are started, you’d just set up your Action Widget trigger to say “in Any Video Widget when the video starts.” This makes for less clutter in your Action Widgets (and potentially your Edit Widgets Panel).
Points For Actions Comes to S2!
The new Points for Actions feature is live for campaigns built with S2 templates! Currently, you can only award points for clicking links in the Navbar, Buttons, and Image Widgets (via hotspots), but this will be enhanced later to award points for additional actions. Points can be awarded either before or after form entry. Jump into your widget settings and start rewarding folks for clicks!
[S2] Expanded Editing for Entries!
When editing an entry (submitted to a campaign using an S2 template) in the Entries Manager, you can now add, delete, and rearrange uploaded images and videos. Maximum files and file size limits are still enforced. This allows you to change the “main” image shown for an entry – you’d just move it into the first position, instead of depending on the order in which the files were uploaded.
Even More Instant Win Improvements!
Our new Instant Win configuration tool is live! Clicking the Instant Win tab in the Form Designer will launch this new tool. You can also access it from within the Instant Win section in the widget settings of the Form Widget (in S2). If you make any changes, or click the Redistribute checkbox under the graph and then click Save, the graph will update for your review – if it’s satisfactory, you can click Close. If the graph isn’t quite what you want, you can click Redistribute again (as many times as needed) until you’re happy with it. There’s also a new Advanced Settings section (available on the Agency Plan or higher) that allows you to tweak settings even further; the Prize Distribution Weight gives you a way to distribute more prizes in the beginning of your campaign, which is useful is you expect most of your traffic in the beginning. With a weight of 1 (the default), it distributes prizes evenly like normal. With weights from 2 to 5, prizes will increasingly be weighted more towards the start of the contest. The other settings allow you to limit when prizes are distributed to specific days of the week and/or a time range each day.
Instant Win Improvements!
Multiple exciting Instant Win updates to talk about today: In the Custom Email Alert editor–accessible via the Form Designer–there is a new Instant Win merge code that will indicate if your entrant won or lost, and if a prize code was awarded it will show the code as well. When submitting test entries in Preview Mode for S2 campaigns, a message will appear in the lower right corner indicating why the test entry didn’t win; it will either say “Instant Win test result is set to Lose” or “Simulated time is outside of Instant Win date range.” If you expect a winning result and don’t get one, this will help you understand why. When submitting test entries, both the email alert (S2 only) and autoresponders (S1 and S2) will show the correct Instant Win result, including the prize code (if any) that was awarded. And even better – prizes/codes don’t get used up when in test mode.
The Publication Panel: More Easily Accessible!
You can now access the Publications Panel from the Campaigns Manager (for S2 campaigns). This means that campaigns can be published or deleted without having to open the Campaign Builder. Just open up the Campaigns Manager (click Campaigns at the top of your account’s Dashboard), then click on the number of installs for any of your campaigns – the panel will open in a pop-up, just like it does when you’re in the Campaign Builder.
Want to ask a question with an image? Now you can…
Now in the Knowledge Quiz and Personality Quiz templates (S2 version), you can add images for the questions as well as your answer options! Just another great way to be able to customize your quizzes to look exactly how you want them.
What’s this? Forms accept PDFs now?!
We’ve added support for uploading PDF files in our Upload field in S2 templates, as well as displaying PDFs in the Entry Display Widget. When you click to view the entry in the Entry Display Widget’s popup, the full PDF will be displayed using whatever PDF viewer you have installed (e.g., Acrobat Reader). PDFs can be viewed in the Entries Manager and will be included in any entry export (along with images and videos) when you choose to export “Uploaded Files.”
Counting Your Characters
In the Form Designer, we’ve added character counter options to Text and TextArea Fields; these apply to custom Text and TextArea fields, as well as Entry Title and Entry Description fields. The counters are only visible when the inputs have focus (when the field has been clicked on) and you can choose to hide the character count using the Style Panel, if you don’t want it.
Making Time Zones Easy(er)
There is a new Default Time Zone setting that works for all templates – you can find it in the “General” section of your Campaign Settings, in the Builder. There’s also a checkbox allows you to update all widgets to use the campaign default. If all widgets are already updated, the checkbox will still appear, but will be disabled, giving you a visual confirmation that all widgets are using the default.
When configuring a time zone in the visibility section of the widget settings, the first option (and the default for new widgets) in the dropdown is “use campaign default” and we’ll show what that default currently is, for confirmation. In addition to the visibility time zone setting, you can also choose “use campaign default” for the two voting time zone settings in the Entry Display widget.
The Blocklist is back…
The Referrer Blacklist (Blocklist) feature has been enabled in all of our S2 templates. It works just like it does in S1 – just add the domains that you’d like to have blocked to the provided field in your Campaign Settings (under the “Other” section). You can take advantage of this feature on the Agency Plan or higher.
New Embed Code = More Efficient Embeds
Our embed code has been updated to solve a couple issues:
1. You can now embed multiple campaigns on the same web page without conflict. Previously, one instance of our embed code would be loaded for each campaign, which was leading to unexpected behavior. Now, only one instance will be loaded no matter how many campaigns are embedded.
2. Campaigns embedded further down the web page will be “lazy loaded” (in supported browsers), meaning they won’t be requested from our server until your visitor scrolls close to the embedded campaign’s location.
Another Support Resource: Working With Widgets
The Working With Widgets tutorial tour is now available in the Tutorials menu! To open the Tutorials menu, click the ? icon to the left of your Add Widgets Panel in the Campaign Builder.
Panel Resizing Just Got WAY Easier
Have you ever wanted just a bit more control over the Add Widgets, Edit Widgets and Style Panels in your Campaign Builder? Now you have just that. Drag the line between the Add and Edit Widgets panels to resize the heights on those, or drag the inner edge (right edge of Add/Edit, or left edge of Style) of any panel to resize the widths. Double-click the inner edge of any panel to revert to default widths for all panels.
Instagram Hashtag Feeds: Now Without @Mentions
Instagram hashtag feeds can now be set up without requiring an @mention in the Instagram post! While this does allow for some freedom, it does come with some caveats. If you choose not to require an @mention, you won’t be able to limit entries by username, use emojis in your chosen hashtags, or use our Rights Management tool for any of the collected entries. Other than that, have fun tracking those hashtags!
Archive Your Lists and Emails Too!
In the same way we recently rolled out archiving of campaigns, now you can archive lists and emails too! The option is available in your Lists and Emails Managers, and will allow you to hide rarely-used items to keep things organized. This is especially helpful if you have a large number of lists/emails, so get to organizing!
Rich Text Widget: There’s a snippet for that.
The Rich Text Widget now supports saving snippets of text; handy for saving your official rules, or any other tidbits of text you find yourself using often when building campaigns! The snippets function works just like the snippets we already support in the Code Widget. You can save your content into a library of saved snippets, and then insert any of your saved snippets into any of your Rich Text Widgets (in any campaigns you build) in the future.
Archive Your Campaigns!
There are times when you may be done with a campaign and don’t want to delete it, but do want it out of your way – don’t we all love a decluttered workspace? With that in mind, you can now archive campaigns in the Campaigns Manager. Simply click on the campaign in the Manager, then click the Archive button that appears up top. To view archived campaigns, you’d open the Campaigns Manager, click Archived in the filtering options on the left, then click the checkbox. It’s an easy way to keep things out of sight until you absolutely need them – give it a try!
Getting Graphical With Prize Distribution
Once your Instant Win contest has been configured, the Instant Win settings in the Form Designer will now display a simple prize distribution graph. It shows prizes distributed by day; unless the contest is only a few days, in which case it shows prizes distributed per hour. Check it out next time you run an Instant Win contest!
Hit Reset on Instant Win
Did you accidentally test out the Instant Win functionality with live prizes instead of using the handy test features of our Preview Mode? No worries, as now you have the ability to reset the awarded prizes back to zero in the Instant Win settings of the Form Designer. Resetting will make awarded prizes available again, remove the winning label from the winning entries, and reset the attached codes so that they are unclaimed and available again. Just be careful; if any legitimate prizes have been awarded, this will undo those as well!
Disposable Email Addresses? Not On Our Watch
Disposable email addresses are not blocked from being used both for entry submissions and for being used to vote when Email Login is enabled for the Entry Display Widget in S2. Anyone who tries to use a disposable email address will see a default message of “Email invalid or disposable email detected.” – you can, of course, change this to whatever you’d like.
Note: We at ShortStack do not control whether an email is judged as disposable or not; for this, we use a 3rd party API to identify them.
The Custom Domains Manager is Live!
The Custom Domains Manager is now available via the “Other” dropdown menu in your account’s Dashboard. You can use it to change the version (between S1 and S2) of a domain, or delete a custom domain; as long as it’s not being used. Otherwise, the campaigns where a domain is being used are shown in the Manager for easy reference. You can also verify any unverified domains by clicking “Verify” in the dropdown.
[S2] Introducing Google Analytics 4 (in the Tracking Widget)
The Tracking Widget has been updated to support Google Analytics 4 (GA4), which was introduced by Google in October 2020. Because the old Google Analytics (what is now referred to as “Universal Analytics” [UA]) will be around for awhile, GA4 has been added as a third option when configuring the Tracking Widget. It is possible to have two Tracking Widgets in the same campaign; one for UA and one for GA4, which is a good way to test GA4 and see the differences – if you don’t want to abandon UA right away.
Crack Down on Repeat Instant Winners
You can now limit how many times the same email address can win in an Instant Win contest. When checking how many times an email address has won, we do count alias emails (emails that include + signs) as the original email address – no getting around the rules that way! Once an email address has hit the limit, it will always get the “losing” result in every subsequent entry.
[S2] More Updates to Analytics & Tracking
We’ve now added clicks from links added to Rich Text Widgets to our ShortStack Analytics. The Tracking Widget has also been updated for Google Analytics to track all the same events that we log in ShortStack’s Analytics; including the ability to customize the values for Category, Action, and Label – this includes support for variable substitution. More information can be found in the Events section of our Tracking Widget help doc.
[S2] Help: Only A Click Away
The widget settings pop-ups for all of our S2 widgets have been updated! They all now contain a link to that specific widget’s help doc in the upper right corner (look for the ?) – click there to be whisked away to our handy documentation.
The Instagram Comment Importer – Now Supporting Comments from Ads!
The Instagram Comment Importer has been updated to support importing comments from ads. This will work for any promoted/boosted Instagram post, or any Instagram Ad created in Facebook’s Ads Manager. Comments from imported ads will report slightly different; they won’t have the username included, but instead a general ID name like, “instagram_user_12345” (this is due to a Facebook limitation). However, each IG entry post URL will link directly to the comment, so those generic usernames will be easy to identify simply by clicking the link.
If a post in Instagram is promoted or boosted, a copy is made of the post; this becomes the “ad” version of the post. Any comment posted on the “ad” version will only be found when importing the comments from the ad – not the regular post on the timeline. For any questions on this update, just reach out to our support team!
[S2] Analytics Get An Upgrade
S2 campaigns will now log clicks from Navbar, Button, and Image Widgets (if the image is linked or has hotspots) to ShortStack’s analytics for that campaign – just like S1 campaigns do. It’s magic!
Test Out Instant Win Times in Preview Mode
The Simulated Times dropdown in the Builder’s Preview Mode has been enhanced to include the start and end times for Instant Win! Each listed time in the dropdown also includes a description of where the time came from (widget start, instant win start, etc.) and a tooltip with icons that indicate if the time is for Instant Win (a gift icon), a start time (eye icon) or an end time (eye with slash icon). With these in place, you no longer have to change the dates in the Instant Win feature itself to test it out – just use the simulated times in the Preview Mode instead.
[S2] A New Section Appears in the Style Panel!
You can now modify the colors and font sizes for elements in the pop-up used for email address restrictions in the Entry Display Widget! You can find the new settings in the Global tab of the Style Panel, under the Pop-ups with Forms section. To update an existing campaign, simply update the Theme when prompted (in the Style Panel), make your changes in the Style Panel after the Theme has updated, save your changes in the Style Panel, then click Publish Changes in the Builder.
Pardon Our Dust: Campaign Builder Updates
Now when you select a widget in the Edit Widgets Panel, the live preview will scroll automatically to the selected widget. If “Edit On” is selected, the widget will also be highlighted. The Edit Widgets Panel also has a search bar now – look for it in the footer of the panel. Search looks in the CSS ID, title, and extra CSS classes fields for every widget in the panel. This makes finding a specific widget in a massive campaign super quick and easy.
[S2] One Vote Per Email Address – Now A Reality!
The ability to restrict votes by email address is now live! When enabled in the Entry Display Widget, a button will appear to configure it. You can click the button without first saving. Clicking the button opens the Campaign Settings on the Email Login section. You can open the Email Selector and choose an existing “Authentication” email, or create an email using a pre-made authentication template. When you’re done, you get returned to the Campaign Settings to save your choice. When you save the Campaign Settings, you’ll return to the Entry Display Widget. Learn the ins and outs of configuring this for your next campaign by checking out the help doc.
This feature is available on our Agency Plan or higher.
[S2] Divide and Conquer with the Paging Widget
Have you ever wanted to divide your contest up into separate pages without dealing with a zillion individual Widget Visibility settings? If so, we have a great new tool for you – the Paging Widget. This allows you to set up a contest in a similar way to a regular website, using a Navbar Widget up top and individual “pages” to house all of your content. Load up your favorite S2 template and explore your new options!
[S2] YouTube + Vimeo + Upload Field = Best Friends
Our Upload Field (image or video) in S2 forms can now be configured to accept YouTube or Vimeo videos as well. These don’t upload the videos directly to the site, but it does make submitting existing videos a lot faster for folks who’ve already uploaded the video to either site.
[S2] First You’re Here, Now You’re There…
A highly-requested feature strides into S2 – redirecting to a website after form submission. We’ve added this option in the Form Widget’s settings – just click on the “After Submit” section, then click “Do not redirect” to switch it to “Redirect to another URL”. From there, just paste your URL into the field, and you’re all set.
[S2] Randomly Sort Your Entries! (ALL Your Entries)
We’ve finally figured out how to do random sorting of entries in the Display Entries Widget! Before, only the first page of entries would be randomized, but now it’s all entries – every page. You can utilize this randomization to display contest entries in a more fair way.
[S2] Sort Your Entries With Ease Using the Category Field
If you’ve been searching for an easier way to divide up contest entries into different categories, your day has come – we now offer a Category Field in the Form Designer, so that each entrant can select the category in which their entry should be classified. The field works just like a List Field; you can show it as radio buttons, checkboxes, or a dropdown. It can also be configured to allow multiple selections. You can then filter on one or more categories in the Filtering section of the Entry Display Widget and the Entries Manager.
Manual URL Sharing Made Easier
We’re always looking for ways to make things easier around here! For sharing (either individual entry shares or using the Share Widget) the manual share button will now show a pop-up with the share URL displayed and a handy button to copy the link.
[S2] Got a code? Redeem it!
The Code Redemption field is now live in the S2 Form Designer! This allows you to accept only submissions from folks who know the code, or have a code from a list of codes you’ve designated. Give it a try in your next campaign!
[S2] A Friendly Welcome to the List Field
In the S2 Form Designer, the old Dropdown and Radio Fields have been merged to create something even better: The List Field! The new Field Layout option at the top of the field’s settings, combined with the Allow Multiple Selections option determines how the list is displayed. In addition to the new multiple checkboxes layout, you can switch back and forth between the different layout options, which wasn’t available in S1.
[S2] The Video Widget joins the party!
Did somebody ask for a Video Widget in S2? Now, you got it! The S2 Video Widget is simpler than the version we provide in S1 templates; we only support showing a single video per widget. Just paste in a YouTube or Vimeo URL, wait for a second to see the preview, then press Save & Exit and your video will appear in the preview.
[S2] Our Entry Search Widget makes the move!
The Entry Search Widget is now live for S2 templates! There are a couple minor changes from the S1 version: You can now press Escape (when the Search field is selected) to clear the search term. Both versions let you press Enter to submit your search. In S1, setting either a label or placeholder is required; but in S2, you can leave both blank and it will default the label to “Search Entries”. This is available on all plans!
S2 is LIVE for everyone!
The updated version of our Campaign Server–which we affectionately refer to as “S2”–is now live for all* ShortStack users! This means there are a lot of fun new widget goodies to tinker with in a whole new library of templates. Get a rundown of what these changes mean in our What is S2? help doc.
* All current plan (Business, Agency, and Brand) users. Update not available for legacy plans. Reach out to our Support or Sales team with any questions.
Feeds Get Some Much-Needed Gap Filling
Were you running a feed, and somehow a post got overlooked? It’s okay – it happens to the best of us. Now, you can manually import a post from Twitter or Instagram into your Feed! Just go to your Feed in ShortStack, click the drop-down (the down arrow) to the right of the feed name, click Add Entry, then input the URL of the post you want to import. Keep in mind that for Instagram, the data we get is limited: We won’t be able to tell if it’s a video post, and we can’t request rights within ShortStack from these posts because the data is incompatible with Facebook.
Small Tweaks Deserve Announcements Too
A couple small bits of upkeep: The Code Widget’s height has been explanded, and a Full Screen mode has been added for the Builder! To go into Full Screen mode, hit Shift-FN-F11 on Mac, and Shift-F11 on PC. To get out of Full Screen, just hit Esc. Enjoy all that extra screen real estate!
Facebook/Instagram Post Importing Made Easy(er)
Importing posts from Instagram or Facebook used to require some pretty hefty access on the Facebook side of things. Great news: You no longer need the “max permissions” (a.k.a. “Admin”) to a Facebook Page in order to import posts from that Page, or an associated Instagram Business Account. You merely need the “Analyst” permission, which is the lowest role a Page can have assigned. Just as a reminder: Roles can be set for your Page via the Page Settings or in Facebook Business Manager.
New Voting Restriction Settings (S2 Beta Users)
The Entry Display Widget in the S2 beta now has some new voting restrictions added! You can now restrict votes by number of votes cast (more than one per hour/day is now possible), and also by a specific number of calendar days (instead of just one). Have a blast getting as granular as you’d like with your voting restrictions.
Copy and Paste Updates
When you want to copy widgets between campaigns in the Campaign Builder, the paste button will be enabled upon opening a new Builder tab after the fact; meaning you don’t have to have both tabs open at the same time anymore! Also, you will not be able to paste incompatible widgets to a campaign (like an Entry Widget to an S1 campaign, Voting Widget to an S2 campaign, etc).
Mass-deleting Entries: A Pain No More!
The “mass delete” entry feature is finally here! When you have filtered on exactly one list, you’ll see a red delete icon in the top right of the Entries Manager. You can filter on any other criteria to narrow the results before deleting. You will have to confirm the count by typing into a confirmation box – no one likes accidentally deleting entries! When the delete is done, you’ll receive an in-app notification.
Importing from Facebook Ads
So importing from Facebook Posts (both Organic and Dark) is fine and good, but what about importing comments/reactions from ads? Great news for you: importing from Facebook Ads is now possible. Do note, this is specifically for ads created in Facebook’s Ads Manager, which resides in your Facebook Business Manager.
Starting and Ending Instant Win
You can now specify a start and end time for instant win, instead of having to manually log in and make changes in the Campaign Builder. This takes care of any date-shifting issues that you may have run into in the past, and just generally makes it easier to run an Instant Win contest. Give it a try now with our Instant Win Giveaway Template.
Adding Info to Your Images
When exporting entry images as a zip file, you can now select any combination of First Name, Last Name, List Name and Campaign Name to be added to each exported image filename. For example, instead of a file being named 99999.png (generic and potentially confusing), you can have something more like 99999_John_Doe_MyList_MyCampaign.png (look at all that clarifying info)!
Export With Labels!
You can never have enough information when doing an export. Now you get even more! When exporting your entries, ShortStack now exports any labels attached to your entries. They will be exported as a comma-delimited list (label1, label2, etc.) in a single column called “Labels”.
More Accurate Email Analytics
A subtle, but important tweak for folks using our email feature: Email analytics now shows Unique Opens instead of Total Opens, which provides a more accurate measurement of how many people opened your email.
Dark Posts Come Out of the… Dark
Have you ever wanted to leverage some of the engagement you’re receiving on certain paid Facebook ads? Now you can! If you want to import entries from “dark posts” on Facebook (targeted Posts that don’t appear on your Page’s Timeline), you can now do so using the Facebook Likes/Comments Importer.
Get Creative With Emojis
Emojis are now available for use in Feeds and in entries. This allows you to include an emoji in the hashtag used to collect entries for a Feed. Give it a try (on the Agency Plan or higher)!
New Year, New Office!
So long South Reno – hello Downtown Reno! The crew has packed up and moved into a new office a couple of blocks away from ShortStack’s original office downtown.
Introducing: Code Lists
Another highly-requested feature has been added to the site: code lists. With this, you can connect a code list to an autoresponder or scheduled email to distribute unique codes. Not only will a code be sent to each entrant, but the code assigned to the entry will be displayed in the Entries Manager view as well. Learn more about using unique prize codes by watching our walkthrough video on YouTube.
Calendar Day Entry Restrictions are Here!
Before, if you wanted to restrict people to entering once per day, you’d have to set the form restriction to “once per 24 hours” and make sure people knew that they had to wait the full 24 hours to enter again. Now, you can set calendar date restrictions; so people can truly vote once per day instead of making them wait.
Analytics Are Popping Up
Analytics for both campaigns and emails have now been moved to a handy-dandy pop-up! This way, you’re not directed off of your current page to view them. The campaign analytics (available on Agency Plan or higher) are accessible from the Campaign Builder, Dashboard, and Lists Manager.
A Fancy New Template Gallery
The Template Gallery has been given a tune up, making your favorite templates even easier to find. Go check it out now!
A Shiny New Form Designer
The new Form Designer is now available to everyone! The upgraded design features an all-new layout that makes settings even easier to find and change. You can get a full breakdown of the new Form Designer in our Form Designer help doc.
Random Entries – No Longer a Mystery
The Random Entry Picker will now automatically show you the picked entry results when they are ready. No more guesswork, or manually searching for the entries after the fact.
Easier Custom Domains (with No Subfolders!)
When publishing a campaign with your own domain, you can now leave the Path field blank to use your own domain with no trailing path at the end. So for example, instead of having to use a URL like my-contest.com/CJSdhsr, you can just use my-contest.com. Super clean!
New List Creation Buttons
The Lists Manager is sporting some new list creation buttons in the top-right corner of the page: Social Import, Create List, and Import List. This cuts out a couple of steps for you, making it even easier to get a list started in the appropriate way. Enjoy!
We’ve Got Retweet Contests!
Retweet-tracking feed contests are now supported in ShortStack! They can be set up using the URL of a specific tweet, or the tweet’s ID. The feature tracks both regular retweets and retweets-with-comments. Find more information on how to set it all up in our Creating a Twitter Retweet Feed help doc.
Counting & Clarifying Emails
You will now see a count next to the email icon in the Campaign Builder. This count indicates the number of emails attached to the campaign. The background of the count will become red if any of the emails are inactive. Clicking open the email panel, you’ll be able to see at a glance which email(s) is/are inactive.
Our ShortStack family gets bigger!
Massive congrats to our teammate Brent and his wife, as they welcome their new baby girl into the world!
Small Tweak to Notifications
We’ve added “Mark All Read” and “Delete All” to the notifications drop-down on the Dashboard. Groovy.
Entry Export Time – No Longer a Guess
Exciting news for those who regularly export entries: An export time estimate is now shown just above the export button. This takes the guesswork out of when you can expect your email with that shiny new .csv or .zip file.
The Campaign Builder Gets Some Clarification
We’ve made some changes to the Campaign Builder to help you better understand the presence of containers. The Edit Widgets Panel has undergone some subtle tweaks, including highlighting all the child widgets of a selected container, a more distinctive style for Container Widgets, and a new image icon that appears when the container has a background image. Clicking this icon will open the Style Panel (if it’s not already open), select the widget and select the “This ___” tab in the Style Panel. In fact, selecting any widget now defaults to the “This ___” tab in the Style Panel. The background image preview in the Style Panel has been made larger, making it more obvious that an image exists. And now when the “Edit On” mode is active, all containers have a dashed outline (we used to only show outlines around containers when dragging). Also, when a container or widget has any visibility settings, there is now a patterned background applied.
Entry Bulk Actions Are Now Easier to Find
The entry bulk actions (“Copy to New List”, “Export Entries”, “Choose Winner”) in the Entries Manager are now separate buttons to aid in discoverability. The “I Want To…” drop-down menu is no longer displayed.
The Bookmark… It’s Blue!
A small but helpful change; the bookmark icon (which opens the Publications Panel) in the Campaign Builder has been updated to a much-easier-to-see blue color.
Customizing Your Subscribe/Unsubscribe Message
You may now override the subscribe/unsubscribe message that appears after an entrant clicks the “Unsubscribe” or “Subscribe” links in an email you’ve sent through ShortStack. To change the messages, just pop open the settings for your company profile.
Presenting: The New Dashboard!
The new ShortStack Dashboard is live – log in and check it out! There’s a nice tour in there as well, to help you get acclimated.
Instagram DRM Rises From the Grave
Instagram digital rights management is finally back! When you request rights for a feed item, ShortStack will post on your behalf from the account belonging to the feed that collected the item. Coming Soon: Notifications in the app to let you know when a feed or feed item needs reauthorization.
Log In with Two Factor Authentication
We work hard to keep accounts safe and secure. Now, enable two factor authentication to your log in process on any account.
Check Out Featured Templates in our Template Gallery
There are so many cool templates in the template gallery, no one has time to look through them all. Now, we’ll be rotating some particularly awesome templates, including new templates, in a “featured” section.
Keep a Tally on Your Feed’s Entry Count
When building a hashtag feed, collected entries can come pouring in. Now, each feed will display how many entries it has collected.
Import Facebook & Instagram Comments to an Existing List
When running a contest or giveaway, collect entries with an entry form and from a comment on a Facebook or Instagram post. Our Facebook/Instagram comment importer can now import comments into an existing list.
Activate and Deactivate Emails with a Toggle
If there’s one thing you want to be sure of, it’s whether or not your emails are live. We’ve made it easier to know, as well as to activate and deactivate emails right from within the Email Wizard – just toggle the little switch at the bottom.
Export Data Now Includes a List Name
When exporting more than one list at a time, we’ve appended the list name to each entry to help you organize your entries and manage your data.
Your Actions Just Got a Little… Smoother
Ever notice the ‘Scroll to’ action was more of a jump? In the Action Widget, we’ve added a smooth scrolling option to the ‘Scroll to’ action. You can also add a ‘fade in’ and ‘fade out’ to actions for content transitions that never looked better.
A Few New Editing Options in the Campaign Builder’s Design Layer
If your preferred method of campaign building is in the Design Layer (i.e. Edit toggled to “On”) we’ve added a few new options for editing your form. Now, view and edit entries, as well as style fields (including removing field labels) right from this layer.
Check Your Email for an Improved Weekly Campaign Summary
Celebrate your accomplishments with a weekly summary of your ShortStack success. We’ve given this report a little makeover to make sure it’s delivering the most useful data in an easy-to-read report.
Easily Run a Giveaway from an Instagram Post
ShortStack has made it easier to execute an Instagram Giveaway. Import the comments right from your post. Then, select a winner from those comments at random with ShortStack’s selection tool.
A New Publish Wizard
Ta-da! We’ve created a sleek new process for taking your campaigns live. It has always been simple to publish your campaign as a landing page, but now, all of your publish options have been brought together in one streamlined wizard.
Timeline Contest Winner Picking Just Got Easier
When running a contest from a post on your Facebook Page, selecting a winner can be tricky when you’ve collected lots and lots of entries. We’ve added a link to the randomly chosen entry to help you find the winner on Facebook.
Updates to Instagram Hashtag Feeds
Instagram’s been making changes to their API. As a result, their requirements for creating a hashtag feed have changed. We’ve updated ShortStack’s Feeds builder to reflect these changes.
Enable “Instant Win”!
Who wants to wait days or even weeks to see if they’re your big winner? On the Agency Plan and higher, you can now enable an Instant Win feature allowing your contest participants to see if they’re a winner in real time.
We Made it Easier to Set Up a Custom Domain
We’ve always offered a means point your campaign at a custom domain, but it took a Ph.D. in “How the %$#@! does this work?” to get it set up. Our engineers put their heads together to make custom domains accessible to everyone – not just advanced techy types.
Override the Captcha Validation Error Message
This is mostly for our users translating campaigns to other languages, but if you wanted to make the error message something fun like, “Nice try, robot.” you can do that too.
Lists are Auto-Named for Better Organization
When creating a campaign from a template, attached lists will be named with the new campaign name. For example, if you’re creating a campaign called Black Friday Giveaway, the lists will be named Black Friday Giveaway A, Black Friday Giveaway B, Black Friday Giveaway C, etc.
Add Group Tags for Better Team Management
When managing more than one team, using a Group Tag for each of your teams will auto-tag assets created by a team member on that team.
Your Team Just Became a Work-Flow Machine
If you use ShortStack for Teams, ‘View Only’ and other roles without the ability to publish will be able to submit what they’ve built for a review by clicking the “Request Review” button. The Admin and Manager team roles will see these campaigns in their account as “waiting for a review.”
Build a Quality List with Email Confirmation
Enable our “confirmation” feature on the email field to add a “confirm email” input field to ensure all the email addresses collected are accurate.
Feeds Has a New Look
When building a Hashtag Feed in ShortStack, you’ll notice the Feeds Builder is lookin’ good.
Request a List Import
ShortStack’s email automation features work great with contacts you’ve collected through your contests and giveaways. But what about other lists you’ve worked so hard to build? While on the Business Plan and higher, you can now request lists be imported into ShortStack by filling out a short form.
Better Mobile Previewing
In the Campaign Builder, scan the QR code in the toolbar (next to the Preview button) with your phone. You’ll see the mobile version of your campaign right there on your phone screen. Leave it open to view changes as you make them.
When signing up for a new ShortStack account, new users are greeted with “What is your goal?” and taken through a drip tutorial tailored to their needs.
We’re Super Secure
We are now using SSL (https) everywhere in the ShortStack app.
We’re Always Making it Harder for Cheaters to Cheat
We’ve added a few new upgrades to the voter restrictions available in the ShortStack platform. First, you may now enable a hidden CAPTCHA to determine if the voter is a bot. It’s completely transparent to the voter and the sensitivity can be adjusted. Also, we’ve implemented a new “Anonymous IP” voting restriction. This setting is similar to the Anonymous Fingerprint but more restrictive. It does not include the browser settings in its calculation, so voters in the same network (for example, voters in the same office) will trigger it.
Even More Upgrades to the New Entries and Lists Managers!
Now, you can edit form integrations and see if a list is using one or more integrations all from one place. The Form Designer is even accessible right from the Lists Manager. Plus, filter entries by country and by test (vs. live) entries.
Non-Secure Requests are Redirected
A new campaign setting will redirect non-secure (http) campaign URLs to the secure version (https).This new setting will be enabled by default for all new campaigns, but has to be enabled for old campaigns. Look for it in the Campaign Settings menu (by clicking on the gear icon) in the Campaign Builder.
Working Together Just Got Better
Now, we’ll automatically refresh resources when multiple users are editing the same thing. So, if you make an update to your campaign, it will automatically refresh and update in all other open browsers.
Add a Label to Randomly Selected Entries
This new feature is great for selecting winners in an ongoing contest or giveaway, from a single list. When selecting entries using the Pick Random Entries tool, add a label to the entries that are selected and you’ll never lose track of who was previously picked.
Upgrades to the New List and Entries Managers
The new Lists & Entries Managers are already getting some upgrades. When viewing entries, see video thumbnails as well as image thumbnails for each entry. In the Lists Manager, see what emails and sources (i.e. campaigns and/or feeds) are attached to your lists. Additionally, you can edit the emails, feeds and even the name, while viewing your list. If you haven’t seen the new Lists/Entries Managers yet, navigate to the Lists/Entries screen and click on “Switch to New List Manager”.
Add a PDF to Any Rich Text Editor
You may now select a PDF from the Media Selector and insert it as a link in a rich text editor (within emails, forms, or the Rich Text Widget). Click the link icon within the rich text editor, select your PDF, and away you go!
Forms Include CAPTCHAs by Default
For added security against bots, CAPTCHAs will now be added to forms by default. Forms are still 100% customizable so the CAPTCHA can easily be removed.
Manage Your Tags with the New Tag Manager (Beta)
Tags help you manage assets in your ShortStack account. Now, manage your tags with the new Tag Manager. The Tag Manager allows you to delete tags as well as removes orphaned tags (tags with no asset attached).
ShortStack is GDPR Compliant!
The team at ShortStack put their noses to the grindstone and implemented all of the necessary requirements for GDPR compliance prior to the May 25th deadline.
New Entries and Lists Managers
Switch from the classic Lists/Entries Manager to the new Lists/Entries Manager by clicking the “Switch to New Lists/Entries Manager” link. Both managers have a clean new look. Entries are now searchable and filterable. Stay tuned as we continue to make upgrades to this new feature.
The New Entry Search Widget is live!
If your super successful contest has collected lots and lots of entries, make it easy on participants and voters to find the entry their looking for. Add an Entry Search Widget to your contest, connect it to your Voting Widget and voila! You have a super simple way for participants to find their photo or video in an ocean of collected content.
Pagination is sooo last year. We’ve ditched those tiny page numbers and added a “Load More” button to the bottom of your gallery of Voting Widget entries. Of course, if you like to do things old school, you still have the option to use pagination instead.
Our Campaign Servers Got a Shiny New Security Update
That’s right! We’re only supporting the latest SSL.
Restrict Entries by an Anonymous Fingerprint
It sounds super black ops, because it is! The engineers at ShortStack have devised a way to restrict entries, that’s not only more secure than an IP address and a cookie, it’s also GDPR compliant.
Hide or Show Help Text in a Form
If you’re using help text in your form fields to display some additional instructions, tips, hints, etc. now, you can either hide the text until the form field has the focus (this is the default setting), or you have the option of displaying the help text in all the fields all of the time.
Your Rich Text Widgets Work Better with the Style Panel
A list of upgrades has been made to the Rich Text Editor in your Rich Text Widgets. Now, remove all inline styles with one click. Plus! color swatches you’ve set up in the Style Panel will be visible in the Rich Text Editor. And if you’re like, “Hey! Where are the options to add a font family, font size, and alignment?” Check the Style Panel! Everything has been moved to one convenient location.
Hosting a Photo Contest? Require that the Entries Look Awesome
Do this by setting a minimum pixel width for photo entries. This minimum will be applied to both uploaded photos and photos submitted from Instagram.
Tag Lists to Help You Stay Organized
If you’ve used ShortStack for awhile, your list of lists is longer than the line at IHOP on Free Pancake Day. Stay organized by using tags to create categories for your lists, and easily access them down the road.
Our Default Language Sounds Less Robot-like
For example, entry forms now say “Enter” by default instead of “Submit”. When someone submits an entry, the text will say “Thank you for your entry” instead of “Entry submission is now being processed, bleep bloop, bleep”. Just kidding. It never said that. If you don’t like our new default text, don’t worry! It’s all still edit-able.
A Template Gallery to Gush Over
The Template Gallery has been re-designed and beautified. Each template’s Learn-More link displays a large information page, which includes a template preview as well as suggestions for other templates you may be interested in.
Customize the Favicon
Otherwise known as a tab icon, bookmark icon, or browser icon, ShortStack users on the Business and higher Plans will be able to customize the little icon that displays in the browser tab.
Yay for Pixabay!
Use Pixabay to add royalty-free stock photos to your campaigns. You can find the Pixabay tab when using the media selector to add an image to an Image Widget or to the Style Panel. You’ll have the ability to search by topic and then save your selections to the Media Selector for future use.
Schedule Follow-up Emails
We’ve added a new option to the Email Automation options you can choose from in the Email Editor. Now, schedule a follow-up email to be sent X number of days after a participant submits an entry in your entry form. This is different than a scheduled email, which will be sent on a specific day.
Make Your Embedded Campaign A Pop-up
We’ve created pop-up embed code available to users with access to the embed feature. Using this pop-up embed code will display your campaign within a pop-up on your website.
Your Default Dashboard Data Displays 30-Days vs. Lifetime
The dashboard has been changed to show 30-Day Views (instead of Lifetime Views) and Stored Entries (instead of Lifetime Entries).
Require a Double Opt-in for Email Subscribers
Now, only send follow-up or scheduled emails to those who have subscribed to receive them. Double Opt-in is easy to enable – just check the “Require Double Opt In?” checkbox in the company profile. “Email Subscribe URL” is available as a merge field in the email editor. Use the “subscribe” merge field in an autoresponder to get permission to send future emails.
Offer an Option to Unsubscribe
“Email Unsubscribe URL” is now available as a merge field in the Email Editor. If ShortStack detects this merge field has been added to an email, it will not display the canspam footer.
Sort Email Campaigns By “Recently Updated”
If you have more than 10 emails campaigns, ShortStack will help you keep track of them easier. By default, the list will be sorted by the “Recent” filter and display the most recently updated campaigns first.
That’s What Fine Print is For
We’ve now added the ability to limit the number of Refer-a-Friend points a user can accumulate. So, if you really want to incentivize Sharing, feel confident in the number of points you award per referral. And put a cap on the number of total points each participant can accumulate.
Get Analytics for Every Email Campaign
We recently announced the roll out of analytics for your email campaigns. Now, you can dive deeper into your data by viewing analytics for individual email campaigns. Email analytics are available to those on the Agency Plan and higher.
Stay Organized with Naming Prompts
When your campaigns are called Copy of Copy of Copy of Photo Contest, you may have a hard time finding what you’re looking for. Now, you’ll be gently nudged to give your campaign a unique name when making a copy of it.
Manage Campaign Emails Easier
See scheduled emails and autoresponders in your Emails Panel. And now, it’s even easier to add scheduled emails for a specific list as well as delete emails.
Track Email Success with a Spiff New Email Dashboard
Keep track of sends, clicks, and open rates for your email campaigns. The new Email Dashboard will give you a better understanding of how well your autoresponders and scheduled emails are faring.
When Copying a Campaign, Email Campaigns are Copied Too
Copying campaigns is a huge time saver that allows you to re-purpose old campaigns without having to re-do all of your hard work. Now, when copying a campaign, the attached email campaign (autoresponder or scheduled email) will copy as well.
Easier Editing in the Email Editor
You’ve created a scheduled email or an autoresponder to go out to your contest entrants. You’re giving your email one-last look over before making it go active. Low and behold, you see a typo. Now, one click in the Content Preview screen will take you back to the email editor where you can get that typo fixed, quick. Now, you can activate your email and get on with your day.
Better Looking Links
We’ve included a few new options in the Style Panel to help you style the Links Widget. Now, make it look more like a button! Plus, style “This Link” vs. “All Links” so your links can be different colors.
Marketing Automation Has Arrived!
You work hard to collect leads using your ShortStack campaigns and contests. Now, use our email automation feature to turn those leads into customers with autoresponders and scheduled emails. Use the pre-built templates, fields and filters to personalize and optimize your communications. Read more about this new feature.
The Media Selector Has a Search Feature
Your ShortStack account comes with unlimited storage space. Awesome, right? But over time, storing so many assets can lead to a bit of clutter. We’ve added a search feature to the media selector so you can find what you’re looking for in seconds. If only your garage had the same feature. ; )
Justin Got Hitched!
If you’ve ever submitted a support request, odds are you communicated with our rockstar support agent, Justin. On this day, he said “I do” to the lovely Rachel (who also said “I do”). Congrats you crazy kids!
Display Twitter Card Images with the Twitter Widget
We’ve updated the Twitter Widget to support Twitter Card Images.
Customize All Campaign URLs
You’ve always had the ability to customize your Campaign’s URL. Now, customize all the URLs associated with your campaign, including the Refer-a-Friend URL and the Share URL. This feature is only available by request. Send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Collect Videos in your Twitter Feed
When setting up a hashtag feed to be collected from Twitter and displayed in a campaign, videos are now displayed. Previously, images would be collected, but videos would be left out of the feed.
ShortStack + UGC
Using User Generated Content to promote your brand is all the rage. ShortStack makes collecting UGC easy with hashtag feeds and rights management tools. Find a new “UGC” section in the Template Gallery.
ShortStack + YouTube
Did you know that ShortStack and YouTube work really well together? You may be missing out on valuable leads by not offering contest and giveaway links in the descriptions of your videos. Check out the brand new section dedicated to YouTube in the Template Gallery.
Hashtag Feed Improvements
Since adding the ability to curate a feed based on a hashtag, we’ve made a few improvements to the Feed set-up menu. Now, the feed’s dialogue will ensure the date range is valid, since you’ll need to include the current date’s range in your feed’s date range. Also, feeds will display the latest refresh date. Users can expect feeds to refresh every 5 minutes, and the entries will display about a minute after that.
We Added Grips o’ Tool Tips
It was time for a comprehensive overview of our tooltips. We updated old ones and even added new ones.
Pause Your Account
I mean, why would you want to do that?! But, if you aren’t going to run a campaign for a bit and were thinking of canceling, pause your account (for up to 3 months) instead.
A Cleaner Form
The form widget will no longer auto-populate first name and last name within the live preview. Published campaigns (that are linked to Facebook) will still populate.
More Action Options in the Action Widget
The action widget now supports a “video has ended” event. Users can use this to incentivize customers to watch a video to get a coupon or whatever.
We Hid the “Hide” Button
We removed the “Hide” button in Build mode so widgets with visibility settings will always be shown.
We’ve made loads of upgrades to Preview mode. Now, you’ll see a new button in the upper left corner, just below the ruler, that, when clicked, will show the side toolbar and panels. A corresponding button appears to re-hide the toolbar and panels. You can click the space between widgets to select a container. When a container is selected, we hide all the labels/buttons for child widgets (which will reduce clutter). And lastly, when you select a widget in the Layers Panel, it will be selected in the Live Preview, too.
Pre-selected Country Based on IP
Filling out forms is never fun. Why not save your end-user some time? Campaigns will now automatically pre-select the user’s country (based on IP) in the form country select.
When exporting a large number of entry images, previously, the export would fail if the file got too large. To help prevent this, we now break up the export into multiple files/emails (if needed).
Automatically Store Hashtag Feeds in a Voting Widget
When you choose to automatically create a form to store hashtag feed entries, an Image and Image Description field will be added by default allowing the feed to be displayed in a voting widget.
The rich text widget now has built in support for bulleted / numbered lists.
Hashtag Feeds and Digital Rights Management
For our higher-tiered plans, hashtag feeds and digital rights management is a thing. You will notice a new “Feeds” category in the ShortStack manager views. Use this to automatically collect user-generated content based on a hashtag. You can also request access to that content to use for further marketing via our rights management tools.
Pre-populated Test Entries
When a campaign is created from a template, we now automatically create 3 test entries for any databases in the campaign. These test entries will give you a preview of what your entries will look like in your Voting Widget. You can add more test entries (which aren’t collected in your database or count toward your entry allotment).
More Entries Display by Default!
If you’ve read the last two Changelog updates, you’ll know we’re on a limit-pushing kick! Why stop now? We’ve increased the limit of how many entries appear in your Voting Widget to 21 per page! (Before, the default was 5.) As always, you can still increase the number of entries displayed on your Campaign to up to 30 per page.
Increased Autoresponder Limits
Our users have sent over 2M autoresponders! Since this feature is so popular, we’ve expanded the threshold for characters allowed in the autoresponder email body. Now, you can include between 8k and 9k characters in your autoresponder, so you can really take advantage of the near 50% open rate those emails receive.
We’re Pushing the Limits for Photo Uploads!
By “pushing” I mean increasing… by a lot! You can now upload a photo up to 10 MB and 8000×8000 pixels in size. We’re pretty sure no phone can take a photo this size, but the intention was to act as a catch-all. Once uploaded, the photo will resize a bit, but to 1280×1280, so they’ll still be crystal clear.
Extreme Makeover: Campaign Builder Edition
The Campaign Builder got an overhaul and the finished product includes innovative updates and a clean new look. Enjoy an uncluttered workspace and new features that put building and testing in the forefront. There are too many Campaign Builder changes to list here, so read about them in this blog post.
Our new concierge is ready to help with all of your needs. #fyrefestival
Hashtag Your Instagram Videos!
‘Cause we support that now! Instagram Videos with a hashtag can be fed to a feed in a hashtag contest.
Import All the Images into Rich Text Editors
The Rich Text Widget image import now lets you choose if you would like your images to be mobile responsive or not. The default is set to mobile responsive, but can be changed in the event you need to use your own CSS to manage your Campaign.
Even More TLC for the Media Selector
The media selector now supports multi-select in all rich text editors, so, if you open a rich text editor, you can select and add all of the images you like from the media selector.
More Flexibility in ShortStack for Teams
In ShortStack for Teams, you can now configure the permissions granted to Team Members to tag resources. The Team members won’t be able to see the permissions granted to them.
The Media Selector Can Do It All
It can’t win at Jeopardy or make BBQ sauce (Google “IBM’s Watson”), but new updates to the media selector (the box that opens when you need to add an image to your Campaign) have certainly elevated its awesomeness status. Those updates include: 1.) You can now delete images from the media selector (if you like to keep things nice and tidy), 2. You can drag PDF files right into the selector, and 3. You can adjust the size of the thumbnails to make selection easier.
Create Custom Thumbnails for your Custom Templates
Now, when you create a Template, you can add a screenshot or image to the template’s settings which will display in your My Templates screen.
One. Million. Autoresponders. (In just 6 months!)
Since kicking off the autoresponder feature just 6 short months ago, ShortStack has sent over a million autoresponders on behalf of our users. [cough, gasp] “How many did you say?!” …over a million!
Add a Company Profile to Your Campaign
Company Profiles are used for CAN-SPAM compliance and can be selected or edited in the Copy Campaign dialogue, the Create New Campaign dialogue, and in the Campaign’s Settings in the general menu.
Adding Media to Rich Text is Easier Than Ever
Any Rich Text Editor within ShortStack (including the Rich Text Widget, rich text form fields, the autoresponder editor, and the form promotion rules window) will now navigate you to the Media Gallery when inserting a photo.
New (Better) Template Instructions
Our goal is to turn every new ShortStack user into a Campaign-building ninja. To realize this goal, we’ve created a pop-up that opens with each new template you open, complete with instructions and a link to these instructions within the Campaign Builder.
New (Better) Template Gallery
Everything you want when searching for that perfect template – including a description, live example, and “how to” video – is available to you right in the Template gallery.
In Skyrim, Ashley became the Arch-Mage of the College of Winterhold
New Mobile-Friendly Sign-up Process
Mobile users, rejoice! You can now sign up for ShortStack on your phone thanks to our new mobile-friendly sign-up pages.
Get a Prompt to Publish Changes
When saving a form, the Form Designer will show you all live campaigns using that form, so you’ll know you’ll need to Publish Changes to all those Campaigns.
Clicks in Autoresponders are now tracked
Clicks are an important indicator of engagement. Understand how your autoresponders are performing by knowing their click rate and open to click ratio.
Quickly Access “My Themes” From the Campaign Builder
Create a theme with the Style Panel, save it, and access it fast and easily with a convenient link.
The Comment/Like Importer Now Has a Search Option
Search up to 500 Facebook posts to import the Likes and/or Comments from.
Style Panel is Live!
The new Style Panel feature is a big deal because it allows you to style the look and feel of your Campaign without having to know any code. You can adjust colors, text, borders, padding, and pretty much any style element you can apply with CSS. This feature update is also a big deal because we’ve completely updated all of our templates to be Style Panel friendly.
New and Improved Chat Client for Customer Support
We’ve upgraded the chat client we use, which now allows you to search for help docs and videos right within the chat window. while simultaneously chatting with one of our super-star support agents.
Override Pop-up Titles
Now, you can override the pop-up title of widgets that are configured for pop-up visibility. By default, the title will still display the Widget’s title.
New Builder and Rich Text Defaults
When building a Campaign in the Campaign Builder, the default width will be fullscreen, whereas before, the default was 960 pixels wide. Also, when adding a URL to a Rich Text editor, the link will open in a new window by default.
Save the Post URLs from Your Hashtag Campaign
If our Design Team builds you an awesome hashtag contest, the URL of the Twitter or Instagram post is included in the database and viewable when exported.
“Save and Activate” Your Autoresponder in One Click
We updated the Save function in the Autoresponder builder to allow you to save and activate it all at once.
See Analytics for Sent Autoresponders
If you’re a sucker for data, then you’ll love that we’ve added Autoresponders to the analytics dashboard. Now, keep tabs on every aspect, including, how many autoresponders have been sent from your Campaign.
The Media Selector Now has Stock Images
ShortStack has always been no-designer-skills friendly, but now, the ShortStack platform is even more equipped to help you build a truly eye-catching Campaign all on your own. Stock Images are now available in the Media Selector!
Jane Won the Muscle Hustle
The Muscle Hustle is our inter-office health/wellness-goal challenge. Jane won because she went full badass.
Edit “You Already Voted” Poll Widget Text
We’ve always touted ShortStack Campaigns as being 100% customizeable. This was 99.9% true, because, until now, you weren’t able to change that “You Already Voted” text in the Poll Widget. We’ve now fixed this to make our Campaigns 100% 100% customizeable.
Add a ‘Reply To’ Email to your Autoresponder
If you’re on a Business/Full Stack or higher plan, add a “reply to” email address to your autoresponder and open up the channels of communication with your users.
Media Selector Make-over
We rebuilt our Media Selector. We made it better… faster… stronger. If you were born in the last 20 years and don’t get the reference, click here.
The autoresponder feature keeps getting better and better. Now, select a template to start with to keep you from having to set up your autoresponder email from scratch.
Analytics Default View is Now 7 Days
When viewing your analytics, the default view was set to “in the last hour.” Realizing you may want to see a more comprehensive display of your Campaign’s results, we changed this to show you analytics for the last 7 days. As always the view can be changed to a wide range of settings including “Last Month”, “Last Year”, etc., but now, you’ll be able to see what’s happened over the last 7 days without having to touch a thing.
ShortStack Can Send Autoresponders!
This is a biggin’! Before now, setting up an autoresponder to trigger when a user entered your Campaign’s form required a somewhat complex workaround that included a form integration and third party software. Not any more! Now, set up autoresponders to trigger right from ShortStack. We’ve even included merge fields for dynamic content as well as email templates to help save you time. Learn more.
Export Refer-a-Friend URLs
Refer-a-Friend is a great way to incentivize users to share your Campaigns. Now, all Refer-a-Friend URLs will be included when you export your database, which you can then send on to the end user for further sharing.
Easier Navigation to the “Full Screen” Form Designer
We recently pushed a feature update that opens the Form Designer in a pop-up right in the Campaign Builder. But if you need access to the Manage Integrations, View Entries, or the Edit Email Template screens, navigating to the “full screen” Form Designer still took a lot of clicks. So, we included a navigation link right in the pop-up. You’re welcome. : )
New Name Display Options in the Voting Widget
When displaying entries through the Voting Widget, you now have lots of options for how you’d like to display the entrant’s name. Choose from any combination of first and last name and first or last initial.
ShortStack Can Hashtag!
Let our team build you a hashtag contest in which vote-able entries are curated via hashtag on Instagram and/or Twitter. Hashtags are a great way to promote your brand and engage your audience. Check out our #shortstackcanhashtag contest and even enter to win a custom-built Hashtag Campaign worth $3,000 plus a $1,000 advertising budget. (Contest ends 10/14) Check it out!
Jim traded his MG Midget for a Honda Gold Wing
And that thing is suh-weet!
Now you can use a Captcha Field in your Form!
If the plot of Terminator ever comes to pass, rest easy knowing that none of those evil robots will be able to enter your contest. Easily add a Captcha field to your form from the Form Designer and verify that every form submittal is coming from an actual human and “not a robot”.
Personality Quiz and Holiday Calendar Templates gated to Paid Plans
We know this may be a bummer for some of our Free Plan users, but in an effort to continue to give outstanding support throughout the holiday season (when our support agents are stretched the thinnest) and all year long, we felt this change was necessary.
Better Mode Visibility
Have you ever submitted a bunch of entries to your vote-only contest, only to realize your Campaign was set to Test Mode the whole time? Now, the mode of your Campaign will be represented in the Campaign Builder’s ruler to help you see if you’re campaign is in Test Mode, Live Entry Mode, or Builder Mode.
New and Improved Resources Page
The new ShortStack Resources Page is like having your very own ShortStack genie. You just type a request in the search bar, say a few magic words (optional), and a list of answers and resources will magically appear. Try it!
Edit Your Form Right in the Form Designer
Now, there’s no need to toggle back and forth from Campaign Builder to Form Designer when building your Campaign. Just click on the “Edit Form” icon and the Form Designer will open in a pop-up window right within the Campaign Builder. So easy!
We Changed Our Plan Names
You may have noticed that your ShortStack plan is now called something that isn’t pancake related. As much as we loved relating the level of plan you were on to an appropriately-sized stack of our favorite breakfast food (i.e. Short Stack, Double Stack, etc.), we found that plan names that better described the plan itself (i.e. Starter, Agency, etc.) is better for business.
New Cold Coke Policy
If you take a cold coke from the fridge, you have to replace it with a warm one. This way, everyone can have a cold Coke.
Toggle the Manage Publication Panel’s Visibility
Zen-out your workspace by clearing the clutter! Now you have the option to “close” the Manage Publications Panel in the Campaign Builder.
Set up Bulk Actions with the Action Widgets
The Action Widget is great for setting up event-based actions, for example, triggering a pop-up based on a form submittal. Now you have the option of including multiple widgets in your if/then event, for example, trigger a pop-up based on the submittal of any form in your Campaign.
The CSS Editor is Now Gated to Pro Plans
In order to provide the best customer support to our users, we had to scale back what we’re able to offer to those on our Free Plan. Although Free Plan users will no longer be able to access the CSS Editor, all of our paid plans will continue to enjoy the platform’s customizing flexibility.
Facebook API Update Notice
We updated ShortStack to use the latest Facebook API version (v2.6), so you may safely ignore any notifications received from Facebook claiming your campaign is using an old version of their API.
In-app Chat Support
When available, a support agent will be standing by to help with your support questions in real-time. Just look for the blue chat button in the Campaign Builder.
Picking Winners is Better than Ever
The random entry picker has been optimized to handle large databases. We also now allow you to pick up to 1000 entries.
Campaign Publish Info is Now More Accessible
The Publish Panel will automatically stay open once a Campaign is published and remain open until it is completely unpublished.
Mobile Login Feature is in Beta
Mobile Login helps brands establish entry restrictions and protect their promotions from voting and entry fraud by linking participation to individual devices. Mobile Login is also available as a Widget, allowing you to display specific content to logged in or logged out users. Read More.
Setting up Instagram Campaigns is Easier than Ever
You no longer need to authorize your Instagram account when adding the Instagram Photo Upload option to your Campaign. To make this update even sweeter, the end-user will now be able to submit photos that are “private” whereas before, only “public” photos could be submitted.
Tags and Permissions Settings Transfer to Templates
When creating a Campaign from a custom Template in ‘My Templates’, or when creating a custom template from a Campaign, you now have the option of also copying your permissions settings and tags from your Campaign or template.
We No Longer Offer a Salesforce Integration
As of now, we no longer allow new Salesforce integrations and existing integrations will stop working after 4/30/16.
Search the Template Gallery for “Getting Started” Templates
New users will be able to find simple templates to help them hit marketing goals faster and easier with the new Getting Started category in the Template Gallery.
Prevent Entry Fraud by Banning Gmail Aliases
The email field in the Form Designer has a new option named “Disallow plus signs in email addresses”. Enabling it will stop entrants from using gmail email aliases – e.g., “email@example.com” – and keep entrants from circumventing your entry restrictions.
Short Stack Plan Users Get More Features
Short Stack users now have email notification templates, field points, and can configure a custom subdomain.
Copy Permissions Between Campaigns
When copying a Campaign, users can now choose to copy the Campaign and database permissions as well.
Forms More Mobile Friendly
Phone and email fields now have field specific keyboards making it easy for users to input information when on a mobile device.
Create Custom Team Members
Grant custom access like creating, editing, deleting, publishing, exporting, and approving Campaigns for your team members. Available to All You Can Eat and higher paid plans.
Create a Copy of Database(s)
When copying a Campaign, users can now choose to copy connected databases as well.
Preview Campaigns in Dashboard and Campaign Manager
Easily preview your Campaign in the Dashboard and Campaign Manager by hovering over the Campaign Name.
ShortStack for Teams
Add coworkers to your account as “Team Members.” Your team members can create Campaigns, manage databases, and monitor analytics, without having to purchase their own account. Team members can be granted full account access or restricted to certain campaigns, assets, or clients. Learn More.
New Monitoring Dashboard
Track how your top Campaigns and forms are performing and instantly access analytics in our new monitoring Dashboard. You’ll see the Dashboard each time you log into ShortStack.
Easily Access Holiday Templates
When navigating in the template gallery select the “holiday” category to see all of our most recent holiday templates.
Set Campaign Entry Limits
Set a Campaign entry limit on your promotions and/or trigger a specific action after a certain number of entries have been received. Learn More.
Increased Max Number of Random Entries that Can Be Selected
Users may now randomly pick up to 300 entries when using the random entry selector. Learn More.
Export Only Visible Database Fields
When exporting data from your database, you can choose to export only the fields your users have entered data into or you can export all fields.
Added Hot Key Support in the Designer
Use your keyboard’s hot keys when you’re building within ShortStack’s designer. To enable hot keys use Alt-s or Option-s. You can access the keyboard menu in the upper right corner of the designer for a complete list of hotkeys.
Create Your Own Country List
Users may now choose which countries get shown in the country list in their forms.
Easily Access the Video Library
When logged into ShortStack easily access our tutorial videos from the help menu in the designer.
Specify Multiple Hashtags for Instagram Campaigns
Users can specify multiple hashtags to require for entry as well as use a defined search start date. Learn More.
Add Form Field Placeholders
Users can now configure placeholder text for most of their form fields.
Require a Verified Facebook Profile for Voting
When running a voting promotion, you can require entrants to login with Facebook before being allowed to vote. This helps prevent fraud. Learn More.
Drag and Drop Images
Users can now drag and drop images straight from other browser windows or other websites directly into ShortStack’s media manager. Once dropped, it will automatically upload, creating an image widget. Learn More.
See Errors in Share Widget Dialogues
The share widget will now highlight each platform that has a validation error. This will make it easier for you to find and correct these errors and continue building your Campaign. Learn More.
It also allows for per-platform title, description and link color configuration. This makes it easier for you to customize what your fans see based on the social network that is being shared to/from. Learn More.
Added Features to Plans
Free users may now test ShortStack’s external embed feature. Users will be able to embed their Campaign on their website (the Campaign will include a ShortStack logo). In addition, we’ve added embed capabilities to the list of features for our ShortStack users. Learn More.
Perform Bulk Actions
Users can tag and delete their Campaigns, assets, forms and templates in batches. In addition, ShortStack’s forms will support bulk copy and you can bulk copy/paste your Campaigns and Templates.
To bulk edit your Campaigns simply use the check box’s located to the left of each Campaign in the Campaigns and Forms/Entries Managers. Select the Campaigns you want to edit and choose from the Action’s dropdown. Learn More.
Copy and Paste Widgets Between Multiple Campaigns
Using ShortStack’s icons or your computer’s hot keys you can copy and paste widgets or containers of widgets from one Campaign to another. Select the widgets you wish to copy, then click the copy icon. Open any other Campaign and click the paste icon. Learn More.
Add Domains to Blacklist
We’ve added an option in Campaign Settings for users to add domains to a “blacklist.” This will help reduce the number of entries from people who clicked on links from contest-aggregated sites. When a site is on the blacklist, visitors will see a Page Unavailable when they visit your Campaign from the spammy site. Learn More.
Easily Access Public Templates
New “link” in the Template Page to take users to the Public Template Gallery.
More Data About Your Plan
Plans and accounts pages now show the user’s current view count for the previous 30 days.
Upgrades to Embed Codes
New responsive embed support lets users choose the responsive version, the old fixed version, or WordPress embed. Extra options added to the responsive embed pop-up include “automatically scroll to pop-up” and “vertical offset.” Learn More.
Streamlined Publishing Process
Once you’re done building your campaign you don’t want to mess around with a complex publishing process. That’s why we streamlined the steps you take to publish your campaigns to be a one-click process. Once you’ve completed a campaign, click “publish,” and your campaign is live so you can immediately start promoting it to your followers. Learn More.
Enhancement to Customer Support
We’ve made it easier to see when you have gotten a response from a support ticket right from within ShortStack. If you’ve submitted a ticket, you’ll now receive a notification when someone on our support team has answered your question. Learn More.
Additional Options for Device Visibility
By default tablet users are treated as mobile users and will see a compressed, mobile version of your campaign. Now you have the option to force tablet users to see the desktop version of a campaign. This setting exists in Campaign Settings -> Mobile. Learn More.
Added Search Features to CSS and Code Editor
We’ve made it easier to find a specific spot in your custom code by adding search features to our CSS Editor and our Code Editor. To search within ShortStack editors, use Cmd-F on Mac and Ctrl-F on a PC. Learn More.