Report Toaster + Mechanic: Peanut Butter Jelly Time
Updated: Jun 13, 2022
Our world has produced a handful of seemingly perfect combinations over the course of history. Mr. Myagi and Daniel-san, peas and carrots, Hall & Oates, and of course, the gold standard of peanut butter and jelly...
Today, we'd like to announce a new partnership, one which will soon be added to the list of the all-time great combos: Report Toaster + Mechanic.
Whoa, Hang On Just a Second...
We understand that's a pretty bold claim. So, to help assuage the legions of Hall & Oates fans out there, we'd be happy to explain - what makes this combo so great?
Report Toaster is the most powerful reporting and analytics platform available for Shopify merchants. Using data from your different sales channels, you can choose from our list of over 80 pre-built reports or customize the filters to create your own. You can then export and schedule these reports so you always have the latest updates from your store.
Mechanic is a development and Ecommerce workflow automation platform for Shopify. Mechanic is here for all those situations where an app doesn't exist, when developing an app would be too expensive, or (honestly) when you'd like to replace many of your existing apps with just one. So what happens when you combine them and create a first-class integration? Peanut butter jelly time.
How It Works
Report Toaster enables merchants to create any number of custom reports, filtered, sorted, and otherwise customized to their needs. These reports can be manually exported to JSON, CSV or PDF or scheduled and delivered via SMS or Email.
But what if you have other needs? Maybe you want to create and print custom packing slips when fulfilling an order? Or you'd like to deliver a report to a third-party via SFTP? Or possibly, you want to track and report on your shipping costs from ShipStation?
Until now, this required extensive manual effort or third-party development... That is, until our integration with Mechanic.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Mechanic, here's a quick primer: Basically, merchants, agencies, and developers can choose from a library of automation tasks or even develop their own. These tasks respond to events and perform automation based on Mechanic's pre-defined actions. Check out the task library of 300+ Ecommerce automations!
Some examples of existing actions are Shopify API calls, generating files, sending email, and SFTP file delivery.
To accommodate the integration, Mechanic has added a Report Toaster action. This action allows Mechanic users to retrieve reports and/or update values in Report Toaster.
So what does this mean?
Combining two of Shopify's most powerful tools has nearly unlimited potential. Here are just a few use cases to help get the creative juices flowing:
1. Eliminate Hundreds of Lines of Liquid Code
While Mechanic is extremely powerful, retrieving data from the Shopify API can be laborious. Learning the REST or GraphQL API, cursoring through results, and managing API throttling in Liquid can make for complicated code.
Instead, users can utilize the Report Toaster action to run a pre-defined report and effortlessly parse the resulting JSON. This can eliminate hundreds of lines of Liquid code.
2. Send Data from Shopify to Third-Party Systems
Maybe you need to deliver order data to a third-party fulfillment company. You can define a fulfillment report in Report Toaster, use a task in Mechanic to retrieve the results in CSV, make any necessary adjustments, and then deliver to the SFTP server of the fulfiller.
3. Schedule Delivery of Reports to Slack
As noted above, Report Toaster supports native scheduling and delivery via SMS and Email. If other delivery mechanisms are required, Mechanic can be used to facilitate them. Just create a task to retrieve a report via PDF and send it to a Slack channel!
4. Create Reports with Calculated Fields
While Report Toaster includes all of your Shopify data, maybe you need something a little extra. One example would be a commission field on a sales report. A Mechanic task could be developed to retrieve a sales report via CSV, add a calculated commission field, and then deliver the report via Email.
5. Track Shipping Costs and Transaction Fees from Third-Party Providers
Report Toaster includes shipping costs and transaction fees when using Shopify Shipments and Shopify Payments, allowing merchants to report on gross and net profit. This however doesn't (currently) address merchants who are using third-party shipping or payment providers.
Mechanic can be used to fill these gaps. You could gather shipping costs from ShipStation, Shippo, ShipHero, and others. You can also retrieve transaction fees from PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.NET, and other payment providers.
We're Here to Help
If you're a current user of either Report Toaster or Mechanic, then you know we pride ourselves on being available to our customers. If you have questions or feedback about the integration, please reach out via one of our respective support channels.
That's it for now. We've given you all the ingredients, and now we just can't wait to see what you create!