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๐Ÿ‘‹ Getting Started
Welcome to Softr knowledge base! In this section youโ€™ll find everything you need to get started. Weโ€™re happy to begin the journey with you. Letโ€™s go!

Basic Concepts

Softr's core concept is the building block. You have the freedom of arranging the blocks in any order, grouping them into pages and defining a particular set of links and relationships within your application as well as with external parties.
Another key concept is the database, which allows you to display a collection of data to your users or collect some data from them instead. Softr uses Airtable for that purpose, which is a powerful and easy-to-use tool.

Dashboard

After logging in, you'll be taken to the Dashboard. The Dashboard is where all your apps live. This is where you organize all your projects and invite others to collaborate with you. It is also the starting point for creating new apps.
Dashboard

Creating Your First Application

On your Dashboard, you'll see the New Application button as well as some template suggestions next to it.
Adding a new application
After hitting the New Application button, a pop-up will appear, where you can either select the Blank option or choose from the variety of templates from different categories. We'll discuss creating apps from templates separately, so let's choose the Blank Application option.
Blank Application
In the screen that follows, you'll be prompted to enter your Airtable API key to be able to link your Airtable database when building your app. You also have the option of skipping this step and adding the key later on when you actually need it.
Next, you'll proceed to a screen where you can add a few pre-built pages to your application that include such building blocks as a List, List Details, Form, User Profile and others.
Adding pre-built pages to your new application
So, choose the pages that you want to add hit Create Application to finalize the setup. Then you'll be immediately taken to your new Softr application and can start working on it.

If Airtable API key setup was skipped

If you had skipped the Airtable API key step in the initial application setup, you'll see a Setup Airtable button when you view any of the dynamic block (i.e. a block that is linked to an Airtable database) settings. So, you can just click the button, add your Airtable API key, and start configuring the block. The following gif illustrates this.
Setting up Airtable from block settings

Setup Checklist

Lastly, when you navigate to Studio after setting up your application, you'll see a Follow Me button in the bottom right corner of the screen, which will open the list of tasks you need to complete to have a fully-functional app. Clicking on the task will help you quickly navigate to the corresponding section of your app or will show you how to configure it. See below.
Setup Checklist in action
That's all you need to know to get started from scratch. Next, we'll see what it looks like when you create a new application from a template.

Creating an Application from a Template

When you hit Create a New Application, you enter the template gallery where you can navigate the different categories or use the search bar if you know what you're looking for.

Step 1: Selecting a Template

On hovering the template thumbnail, you'll see a Preview button. Click the button to select the template.
Template Preview
Clicking the button will take you to the template page, which has a detailed description of the template with all of its features and functionality as well as a template image gallery with some screenshots. The gallery also includes an interactive screen with a preview of the template's Airtable database (if the template comes with one), and there's also a button that opens a pop-up with two options:
  • Open Application. This option will open the template preview application, where you can actually navigate the template and try out its features.
  • View Airtable Base. This one (again, you'll see this option only if the template has a database linked to it, which is not always the case), in turn, will open the template's Airtable database, which you can play around with as well.
Exploring the template

Step 3: Airtable Setup

If the template comes with a database, your next step will be the Airtable setup, where you need to add your Airtable API key. You can also choose to Connect Later.

Step 3: Select Base

Lastly, you need to copy the template's database to your Airtable account to make it your own and be able to customize it as you wish. As soon as you copy the base, it will be automatically selected in your template setup, and you can hit Create Application to complete the setup and proceed to your template. The following gif demonstrates the steps.
Copying the base and creating the application

If the "Connect Later" option has been chosen

If the Connect Later option has been chosen when setting up the template, you can connect Airtable at any time from within your application by clicking on any of the dynamic blocks (i.e. those that work with an Airtable base) and choosing Setup Airtable.
Setting up Airtable from your application
After completing the setup and navigating to your application, you can start customizing the template and will also have a setup checklist the same way you did when creating an app from scratch.

Studio

Softr Studio
The Studio is your workspace where you design and build your app. Let's check how the navigation is organized here.
In the left toolbar, you can access Pages, Blocks, Data, as well as the app Settings.
On the left-hand side of the top navigation bar, you see the page you're currently editing and its path. In the center, you have the option to switch to tablet or mobile views to see what your page would look like on smaller screens. In the upper right corner, you have the Preview button, which can be used to preview your app at any moment, and the Publish button.
Please, note that on all the pages you have the live chat button in the bottom left corner, which you can use to get in touch with us whenever you have a question, complaint, or a suggestion.
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Outline
Basic Concepts
Dashboard
Creating Your First Application
If Airtable API key setup was skipped
Setup Checklist
Creating an Application from a Template
Step 1: Selecting a Template
Step 3: Airtable Setup
Step 3: Select Base
If the "Connect Later" option has been chosen
Studio