How to receive website updates in a Slack channel

How to receive website updates in a Slack channel

Written on 2020-04-05

Have you ever wanted to avoid opening websites to check for updates, and instead receive them directly in the Slack channel of your choice?

Doing this used to require either a dedicated Slack app for the most common websites/web apps, such as Jira, or for the most adventurous to setup your own scraping infrastructure, and spend some evenings regularly to ensure it works.

This guide explains how to setup Slack with Monitoro to receive website changes directly in the Slack channel of your choice. This data could be anything from new tweets, price changes, new software releases.

Configure the integration with Slack

Monitoro will connect to your Slack channel using an "Incoming Webhook". It's a special URL that tells Monitoro where to send the data it extracts from the website you're watching.

You can get an Incoming Webhook and setup the Slack channel easily by following the official instructions from Slack up to step 3, where you will get a URL that looks like the following. Keep this URL handy for the next step.

https://hooks.slack.com/services/T00000000/B00000000/XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Open the official instructions from Slack.

Create a monitor

Now let's create a monitor to watch the website. Make sure to have the extension installed if you don't have it yet.

  1. Open the website you want to monitor, for example a twitter account or your favorite online shop.
  2. Click on the Monitoro icon in the top right of your browser
  3. In the monitoro app, click "Add selection" to select parts of the webpage you want to extract when they change
  4. Click on "Extract data", and then on "Transform with javascript". At this point you should return an object with a property named text, such as this piece of code. (make sure to replace SELECTION_NAME with what you filled in the previous step)
    return {
    text: 'Product price is ' + data.entries.SELECTION_NAME.text
    }
  5. Click on "Configure webhook", and fill the URL you got when configuring Slack earlier. You can click "Test webhook" to send a message to Slack right away.
  6. Click on "Create this monitor" and you're done!

Do you have any questions? Hit the chat button in the bottom right and we'll jump in to help :-)

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