How to Ban a User (with Zapier)
Tim Tietz avatar
Written by Tim Tietz
Updated over a week ago

This step-by-step tutorial explains how to ban a user in your BuildFire app using Zapier. For more information on Zapier, what it is, and how it works, check out our Zapier Knowledge Base.

In this example, we’re going to use Google Sheets as the data source. But you could easily use another platform if you have user data somewhere else.

Regardless of the system you’re using, the same concepts can be applied. You’re going to be “mapping” and matching the user information from your database source to BuildFire using Zapier as the middleman. The same steps could be followed using a CRM like Salesforce, an ecommerce platform like Shopify, or another source altogether. Alternatively, you could always export your user data into a Google Sheet to follow the exact steps outlined below.

Step #1: Create a Google Sheet With Your User Information

Before you do anything in Zapier, you’ll need to start with your data source. So make sure the spreadsheet is prepared ahead of time.

Everything must be clearly labeled, as it will make the process much easier once you start integrating with Zapier. Label the Google Sheet, the worksheet tab, and the columns appropriately. Here’s a simple ban user template that you can use:

In this example, we just need the user’s email and a column to determine whether or not they’ll be banned from the app. The two columns shown on the “Ban Users” worksheet is sufficient enough for this particular use case.

Step #2: Create a New “Zap”

Jump into your Zapier dashboard and click “Make a Zap” at the top left corner of the screen.

If you’re on a free Zapier plan, you can create 5 Zaps and 100 tasks. If you need more than that, you’ll need to upgrade to the premium version of this software. Zapier is a third-party tool and completely separate from your BuildFire subscription.

Step #3: Start Your Trigger With the Google Sheets App

The first thing you need to do is begin a new trigger. Since the ban user data is located in Google Sheets, we want to start by selecting the Google Sheets app in Zapier. Here’s what that looks like:

If you don’t see the Google Sheets app on the initial menu, just search for it using the search bar at the top of this screen.

Step #4: Select “New or Updated Spreadsheet Row” as the “Trigger Event”

If you’re not already signed into Google Sheets from your Zapier account, you’ll be prompted to do so. Now just locate “New or Updated Spreadsheet Row” from the “Trigger Event” dropdown menu.

Step #5: Find Your Spreadsheet and Select the Corresponding Worksheet

Scroll through the Google Sheets associated with your linked account until you find the spreadsheet that was created back in the first step. If you don’t find it by scrolling, you can always search for it by name.

Then select the “Ban Users” tab from the “worksheet value” field within Zapier.

This is telling Zapier to pull the information from that particular worksheet with your banned user data. That’s why it’s so important to have your spreadsheet and worksheet labeled properly, as mentioned back in the first step.

Click continue.

Step #6: Test Your Trigger

Next, Zapier will find a recent spreadsheet row within that particular Google Sheet and pull the information to test. This will ensure that you have everything set up correctly.

Zapier is really good at letting you know if you have an error or an issue. The system can usually identify what that error is as well to help you diagnose the problem and get everything straightened out.

After you’ve verified that the information is correct, click continue to proceed.

Step #7: Connect to BuildFire

Now you need to set up another app and event. For this specific purpose, we want to take the data from Google Sheets and send it to BuildFire to ban users within the app.

Assuming you already have the invitation from BuildFire, the app will appear in your Zapier menu.

If you don’t see the icon and you know that you’ve already been invited, just search for “BuildFire” in the search bar, and it should appear.

Click the app to continue.

Step #8: Select “Remove or Banned User” as the Event

Similar to what we did earlier when setting up an event within Google Sheets, we need to do the same for BuildFire. In this case, we’re telling Zapier what we want to do within BuildFire using the data from our spreadsheet.

In this particular case, select “Remove or Banned User” from the menu.

Step #9: Customize “Remove or Banned User” Fields

Now you need to tell the BuildFire app where to pull the information from. So select the “email” column from your worksheet that was created earlier.

Now Zapier knows to pull the data from that particular column. Any time a new email is added to this column in the worksheet, that specific user will be banned from your app in BuildFire.

Click continue when these fields have been filled in, as shown above.

Step #10: Turn On and Name Your Zap

Complete the prompts to verify the test between these apps. Once the test has been run and verified, just turn on the Zap.

If you haven’t done so already, name your Zap as well.

Zapier runs on a cycle of every 15 minutes for anyone on the free plan. So if you add a new email to the banned list in Google Sheets, they won’t be banned immediately. Premium Zapier users will benefit from a cycle that runs every 5 minutes, so the user will be banned a little faster in that scenario. But in both cases, it won’t happen instantaneously.

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