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Tutorial - Using Zapier and WebMerge to Automate Document Creation and Communications

WebMerge has a basic integration with Clio that allows for merged documents to be saved back into Clio. For details on how to connect WebMerge to Clio using this integration, click HERE.

This tutorial will show you how to connect Clio to WebMerge via Zapier to take document and communication automation to the next level. For general information about getting started with Zapier, please see the Zapier Support article HERE

WebMerge allows you to automate the generation of documents and communications with data from customizable web forms (such as intake forms) or merged from other sources, including Clio via Zapier, or data exported from Clio in a CSV. Merged documents can then be automatically sent to your preferred document storage solution, e-signature application, or emailed to your client for review.

You can try WebMerge for free to test out the Zaps detailed below.


Creating a Template in WebMerge 
     Building the Template
     Template Settings
     Testing the Template
     Template Delivery Options
Connecting Clio to WebMerge via Zapier
Examples of Useful Zaps and Tips
     New Matter in Clio Generates a Contract in WebMerge, Sends it to RightSignature, and Notifies your Client
     Using WebMerge to Complete a Fillable PDF Form with Data from Clio
     Using a WebMerge Intake Form to Create a New Contact in Clio

Creating a Template in WebMerge

In WebMerge, start at the "Documents" tab to create or upload your template. Templates can be created that will generate PDFs, emails, JPEG images, and Microsoft Office files types that correspond to your uploaded templates (i.e. Word DOCX, Excel XLSX, or PowerPoint PPTX).

Click the "New Document" button to create or upload a new template.

When selecting your document type, you can choose to:

  • Make a template from scratch using WebMerge's template builder, 
  • Upload a fillable PDF form to be converted into a template, or
  • Upload a DOCX, XLSX, or PPT that already incorporates some WebMerge field tags.

In this example, I have chosen "Build Your Own".

Building the Template

Type or copy the content of the letter, agreement, form, or email into the template content editor. Then click into each area of the template where you want a merge field to appear and click the "Merge Field" button. In the "Insert Merge Field" box, enter a name for the field that you want to add. The merge field tag will then be inserted into the template with the proper formatting. Once you are familiar with the merge field tag format, you can also type tags directly into your template. 

The format of merge field tags will look like this:


When creating a template specifically for use with Clio via Zapier, ensure that you add merge fields that will correspond to the available Clio fields in Zapier. For Zaps involving the Clio triggers "New Contact" or "New Matter", remember that Zapier also supports all of your Clio Custom Fields which can be matched to any of the merge fields that you have added to your WebMerge template. 

Once you have completed the template, click the "Save & Next" button.

Template Settings

Next, you will be provided with a number of settings relevant to the file type of your template. These settings will allow you to determine the output format of generated documents, page orientation, and the file name of generated documents. 

Tip: Select PDF if you are creating a letter or document template and select Email if you are creating a template for an email communication.

Again, when you are happy with your template settings, click the "Save & Next" button. 

Testing the Template

Next, you will be provided with the option of manually testing the fields that you have added to your template. Completing the provided fields then clicking the "Test Document" button will generate a sample document so that you can see how the document will look with merged data. 

Click "Skip to Next Step" to proceed with the delivery options.

Template Delivery Options

By default, your new template will have an Email delivery which will send the document to your email address. You can edit the details of the email including who the email will be sent to, the from email, subject line, and message body. 

Tip: If your template includes a field for the client's email address, you can send the document to the email that is entered into that field. 

To add additional deliveries, click the "New Delivery" button. WebMerge supports sending documents via email; to Box, DropBox, and Google Drive.

Tip: If you select one of the document integration deliveries, you will be able to access documents generated from your template in Clio provided that you specify the "Clio" folder.

WebMerge supports any number of separate deliveries so each template can be emailed to multiple recipients, saved to a document integration, AND sent to the client via one of the supported e-signature apps. 

Connecting Clio to WebMerge via Zapier

Once you have added all of the delivery options that should apply to your template, you are ready to connect Clio to your WebMerge template via Zapier. In this example, WebMerge will automatically generate the template created above whenever a new Contact is created. 

In Zapier:

Select Clio as the "Trigger" application and then select "New Contact".
Select WebMerge as the "Action" application and then select "Create Document Merge".

The first time you connect Clio to WebMerge in Zapier, you will be prompted to retrieve an API key from WebMerge. Click on the request link to open WebMerge in a new tab to the API Access page where you can copy the API key to paste into the Zapier request fields. 

Next, you will be prompted to select the WebMerge document template that you want to connect to Clio. 

When prompted to match fields from your WebMerge template to available Clio Contact fields, click the insert button to the right of each field then select the relevant Clio field. 

When complete, click the "Continue" button which will prompt you to test the connection. Once Zapier has tested the connection successfully, turn on the Zap and it is immediately ready to automatically generate new documents and email communications in WebMerge. 

Tip: If you do not want WebMerge to generate a new document or communication every time a new Contact is added to Clio, then be sure to add a Zap filter to specify conditions for when the document should be generated.  

Examples of Useful Zaps and Tips

New Matter in Clio Generates a Contract in WebMerge, Sends it to RightSignature, and Notifies your Client

When a contract or agreement requiring a signature is generated in WebMerge, you can specify that the document be sent directly to one of their supported e-signature applications such as RightSignature. You can even add a fillable signature field that is recognized by RightSignature. Add the following to your template where you want the fillable signature field to be placed:


[                                   s:a:r                                   ]

Using WebMerge to Complete a Fillable PDF Form with Data from Clio

You can upload a fillable PDF form to WebMerge which can be filled with data when you add a new Contact or Matter to Clio. Since many court or industry required forms will contain fields that you may not want to house in Clio as Custom Fields, you can match whichever fields you want to be completed automatically with information from Clio. The remaining, uncompleted fields can still be completed manually at your leisure and saved using Adobe Acrobat Pro. 

Using a WebMerge Intake Form to Create a New Contact in Clio

When you create a document template in WebMerge, you can also create a corresponding web-form connected to your template so that each submission of the form will generate a new document from that template. By connecting WebMerge to Clio via Zapier, submissions of your web-form can also create a new Contact, Matter, and add Notes. 

To create a web-form, first create your document template then go to the "Data Capture" tab and click the "New Data Capture" button. In the "Create a New Data Capture" window, select the document template that you want to create your form from.

You can then build your form by dragging and dropping the fields from your template into the order that you want. You can also add the "Rich Text" control to add descriptive text to your form. 

When you are finished click the "Save" button then determine the access and status settings for the form. Click on the "Publish" tab to get the "Capture URL" which you can share with your clients. 

Next you will have to connect WebMerge to Clio via Zapier. 

Create a new Zap with the WebMerge trigger "New Merged Document". You will then be prompted to copy a URL to be used in the "Webhook" delivery for your template. 

In a separate tab, open WebMerge to the intake document template (not the form). Go to the "Deliver" tab and create a new delivery selecting the "Webhook" icon. In the Webhook delivery settings, paste the URL that you copied from Zapier to the URL field. Next, click the "More Options" button and check the box beside "send merge data (uses the key: fields)". Finally, click the "Save Delivery" button. 

Go back to Zapier and click the "OK, I did this" button. 

For Zapier to test and verify the connections that you create, there must be some data for Zapier to refer to. So while Zapier is "Looking for the document", it is recommended that you jump back to the WebMerge tab and click on the "Merge" tab of your template, then use the "Merge URL" to add some sample data to your template. Once you have done this, Zapier should be able to quickly find your template. 

Once Zapier has successfully found your WebMerge template, you will have to add the Clio action "Create Person". In the Create Person template you should now be able to match the fields from your intake form to the available Contact fields in Clio. 

Once you have completed matching fields to Clio and have turned on the Zap, all submissions of your WebMerge intake form will create a new Person Contact in Clio.

Looking for more examples?

For more Zap ideas with Clio and WebMerge, you can explore example Zaps HERE.

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