Extend Watchful with apps for WordPress

Published by Vic Drover

Extend Watchful With Apps

Watchful is a collection of tools and services that simplifies the maintenance and management of websites. But Watchful cannot solve every maintenance need for every user. Thus, you can extend Watchful with apps that communicate changes on your website to your Watchful account.

What are apps?

Watchful apps are WordPress plugins written or modified to make use of the Watchful API. Typically, apps contain a trigger and an action.

For example, a trigger could be the submission of a form on your WordPress site. The action would be to add an entry to the Watchful logs.

Who makes Watchful apps?

Extending Watchful with apps is a solution for Watchful who have specific needs unique to their sites and clients. Thus, Watchful users typically create apps.

Are any apps available to use as examples?

Absolutely! We wrote the Changed Files app as a practical and usable example app. It is available from the WordPress repo so installation is similar to other plugins.

This trigger for this app is a change in the size or modification date of a file. Once installed, the plugin settings have fields to enter the path for up to 10 files.

The plugin will continually monitor these files for changes. If any changes are detected, the action is to send a notice to the Watchful logs and email the account holder.

Importantly, you may choose to include the data from Watchful Apps in reports you prepare and send to clients.

Changed Files App Settings
Specifying file paths in the Changed Files app.

Ideas to extend Watchful with apps

Your imagination is the only limit to the types of apps you can build with Watchful. But we expect most apps to include an SQL query to help evaluate if a trigger requires an action.

Here are a few ideas from Watchful users for the types of triggers that might be useful to include in the Watchful logs and email alerts:

  • Average revenue (hourly, daily, weekly) drops below a set value.
  • A new post is published that doesn’t meet your style guide (i.e. too few words, no keyword specified, no category specified, etc…)
  • Contact form submissions drop below average daily rate
  • A new comment includes a specific keyword
  • A user logs into your site

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