How to create a bot to automate tasks for you
If you want to automate tasks performed in the browser, you should consider creating a bot. You will be surprised how useful this can be - who wouldn't want an army of AI digital assistants to help handle their workload?
In this guide, we will teach you the basics of creating your own 🤖 bot in just minutes, using Axiom’s no-code bot building tool.
# Why make a bot?
Well, bots can take some of those repetitive, manual browser tasks off your hands, freeing up valuable time for other, more enjoyable things. Besides, watching the bots do your work is pretty amazing! What’s more, you’ll acquire useful 👩🎓 automation skills.
# What can bots automate?
We’re teaching you how to make bots that can be used in the Chrome browser. These bots can automate a wide range of browser actions, from data entry to data scraping. We have users automating a multitude of different tasks, helping them to more efficiently manage their social media accounts, e-commerce stores, data migration, and more.
# How do bots automate in the browser?
Simply put, bots mimic human behavior in Chrome. They click buttons and enter data into forms, except they don't get bored, fed up, or frustrated.
# Can anyone make a bot?
Our no-code, point-and-click bot builder has been created to be user-friendly from the ground up. You don't need any programming skills to make bots with Axiom.ai, but having a clear idea of what you want to automate will be helpful.
# What skills will I learn?
Learning how to automate your browser is becoming an increasingly valuable skill . As more and more work moves to the browser, being able to automate it will be an invaluable addition to anyone's CV.
Learning to automate, instead of being automated, will empower you for the future. Of course it involves a learning curve: you'll have to get to grips with some of the key concepts of automation, from structuring it, to setting up loops and thinking like a programmer.
👨🏾🎓 Once you master it, you won’t look back.
# Start by breaking your bot down into steps
It's always useful to plan before you get started. 💡 A plan helps reduce frustration and speeds up the process.
Start by breaking down the task into steps and then review it, simplifying the process as much as possible for your first bot.
For complex tasks, you may want to consider breaking them down into several steps, to be taken on by more than one bot.
Once you have a plan in place, you're ready to start building.
# Start from blank or pick a template
We offer a variety of templates. to assist you with scraping, data entry, and social media management on platforms like Instagram. You can find all of our templates on our website. However, we believe it's important to teach you how to start from scratch.
We will assume that you have already created an account and installed Axiom.ai (opens new window).
Open the chrome extension and double click ‘Create New Automation’.
You are now in our Axiom builder. Let’s take you through the basics.
# Choose a starting point
Select your first step to add. We suggest one of the following steps:
- If you have data in a Google Sheet, start with the ‘Read data from Google Sheet’ step
- If want to make a web scraper bot, start with the ‘Get data from URL’ step
- If you want to enter data into a form, start with the ‘Interact’ step or, in the new version of Axiom, the ‘Go to’ page
# Combine steps
To make your bot perform tasks, you can combine different steps. For instance, if you need to read or write data, you may consider using ‘Google Sheet’ steps. Or, if you need to interact with a web page, or fill out forms, you can use the ‘Enter Text’ steps and click on the elements you wish to enter data into.
By replicating each step of your task, you can create a sequence of actions for your bot to execute.
Have a browse through the different steps in our step finder.
Here's a neat trick on how to add multiple steps of the same type. By adding '*8' after the step name I can add 8 steps instead of one.
# Some helpful patterns for your bot
If you're not sure where to begin 🤷♀️, try using one of these beginner bot design patterns, and replicate it with the step finder to create a basic bot. 💪🏽
# A simple web scraper bot 🤖
Here we read URLs from a Google Sheet, loop through them, and write data to a Google Sheet.
# Web actions bot 🤖
Here we show a simple bot automating some web actions.
# Data entry bot 🤖
Here we read data from a sheet a sheet and enter it into a form.
# How to loop your bots ♻️
There are loop steps and jump steps. These can be added from the start, or later. The loop step will loop through data from a source like a Google Sheet; the jump step loops for the number of times you set it to. Make sure to add the steps you want to repeat inside the loop.
# How to pass data between steps in a bot
Steps that read or output some form of data like the ‘Get data’ step, make their data available to other steps in the form of tokens. See this example of a Google Sheet token passing a URL into a go to page step.
# How to move steps in a bot
We have made it simple to move, edit and duplicate steps by simply clicking on a tick box inside the step. You’ll find the tick box to the left of the title.
# Test as you go
We highly recommend testing your build by running your bot on the desktop app. Failed or stopped runs won't count towards the runtime limit, so you can test as much as you want.
While testing, it's important to observe the behavior of the bot and note at which point it breaks or doesn't behave as expected.
# Ready to run!
Once you’re ready to run the bot 🥳, you can run it on your desktop, in the cloud or on a VPS. If you’re on a paid tier, you can also schedule your bots..
Please note that if you build a bot on the desktop app when logged in, your session will be shared. However if you run the bot in the cloud, the session will not be shared. Learn how to work around this here.
The screenshots in this guide are from Axiom v4. If you're using v3, your experience may differ but the methods remain true. However, the interact step is being phased out in favor of the loop step.
Would you like to test the latest version before it is officially released? Contact support.
# Need help?
If you get stuck or need help with building more complex bots 💁🏻 , please don't hesitate to contact us via this link. Be sure to share with us your Axiom bot and as much supporting information as possible.