Edit an Automated Program

  • Updated

With the Automated Journey Builder, you can easily pause and edit your automated programs. Read below to learn best practices for editing your programs, as well as some considerations you may need to take before making certain edits.

Need more help with your automated programs?


Edit a running program

You need to pause your program before editing steps or changing program settings. To make changes to a running program:

  1. Pause your program in the Automated Programs Dashboard.
    Go to Automation > Automated Programs, hover over the running program (with a green dot), and click Pause program:


  1. Edit your program in the Automated Journey Builder.
    Hover over the paused program (with a yellow dot) and click Edit:


  1. The Automated Journey Builder appears, where you can:
    • Edit steps in the Program Flow
    • Add or delete your program's email messages
    • Change your program's source list and segments
    • Create Early Exit conditions
    • Update your program's Settings

Learn more about these options in our Automated Journey Builder User Guide.

Edit program steps

If you attempt to delete a step that contacts are currently in, such as a wait step, you'll see the following warning:

Screenshot 2024-04-30 at 3.26.08 PM.png

If you see this warning, you have a few options:

Option 1

Manually move contacts from the impacted step to the next step in the program flow. To do this:

  1. Reactivate the program.
  2. Navigate to Report > Steps.
  3. Find the impacted step, expand it, and use the Move Contacts to Next Step option: 

Screenshot 2024-04-30 at 3.24.57 PM.png

  1. After contacts have moved to the next step, pause the program and delete the original step.
  • This is the most efficient option if there are many contacts in the impacted step.
  • This option allows you to keep the contacts in the program.

Option 2

Manually exit contacts from the automated program. Since this is done one contact at a time, it's a better option if there are fewer contacts in the step. To do this:

  1. With the automated program either paused or active, navigate to Report > Steps.
  2. Click the count of contacts waiting in the step you are attempting to delete:

Screenshot_2024-04-30_at_4_37_31 PM.jpg

  1. Hover over each contact record and use the Exit Contact action to exit the contact from the program:

Screenshot 2024-04-30 at 4.40.40 PM.png

  1. After contacts have exited the step and the program, you can delete the step.

Option 3

Allow contacts to move on from the step at the normal program schedule and delete the step once it has no contacts in it. The automated program must be reactivated for this to happen.

Time-based wait steps use the date and time of a contact's entry to determine when to advance them to the next step. For example, if a contact enters a Wait 1 Day step and the program is paused for two days, they move to the next step immediately when you restart the program.

Learn how pausing a program may impact its Program Flow and steps here.

Remove or change your program's list

You can remove a list or segment within the Automated Journey Builder's Settings. If you remove a program's Source List or Segment, the program will remove all contacts from that list as well. If you delete a list from the Contacts page of your Act-On account, the list and its contacts will also be removed from any programs where they're currently in use.

Other best practices

While there are many ways to build automated programs in Act-On, the particular flow of a program or set of programs will always be unique to your goals and business needs. Here are a few strategies that might help keep things organized and efficient:

  • Always stage and test your program, including changes to your program, in a test version before publishing or saving updates to your final program
  • If your Program Flow is getting too long or contains lots of branches, consider splitting it into a set of smaller, simpler programs
  • Keep up-to-date documentation about the programs in your account, including information on the purpose of each program and notes about any changes made to programs

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