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Create and Edit Mini Apps

Provide a Mini App that can contain booklet and agreement elements


What Is a Mini App?

Mini Apps are mobile experiences that don’t require downloading or logging in. In an app-fatigued world, where over 75% of app downloads are not used more than once, Mini Apps make an ideal feature with better accessibility and usability.

 

Leverage Mini Apps to automate and expedite day-to-day processes like identity, verification, security deposit collection, or even contactless check-in.

 
 

How Do I Create a Mini App?

GIF Example

 
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Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Go to the Mini Apps header and click + New Mini App to begin
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  1. You are then prompted to choose your Mini App theme
      • These themes change the appearance of buttons/checkboxes/etc on your Mini App and note that you can change this later on
      • For branding configuration, please click here: Branding
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  1. Choose a theme and decide if you want a cover screen for your Mini App (the grey area would either be blank space or an image you upload)
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  1. After you choose a cover screen, or skip that option, hit Edit in the top right to begin editing your Mini App
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      Similar to guest messaging, only one user can edit a mini app at once to prevent local changes from interfering with one another. Please be sure to save your changes or discard your changes before you exit the page!
       
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  1. After selecting Edit, you’re able to do many things to customize your Mini App:
      • Add bottom bar or side menu pages - Click ADD to create another page and toggle between them in the editor
        • We recommend having a maximum of 4 bottom bar pages so that the text and icons don’t get squished on smaller phone screens
      • Drag and drop elements into the phone editor - In the sidebar, drag one of the elements over to the phone screen to begin creating your Mini App
        • Clicking and holding an element that is already on the phone screen will allow you to move it up and down (if there are other elements on the page)
        • Format
          • Heading - Add a header to the top of the Mini App or for each new section
          • Notice - A yellow notification banner to alert and call out specific information to the guests
          • Text Block - Include single or multi-line text to the Mini App and use the magic wand to add message tokens to the text
          • List - Choose between a bullet or numbered list
          • Footnotes - Add small text at the bottom of your Mini App or underneath another component
          Input
          • Text - Ask guests for a free-form input (optionally pre-fill the value based on the guest’s information) and you can also configure which input type you accept here
          • Date - Guest can either write or use the calendar widget to select an applicable date
          • Time - The guest can write in or select a time with the clock widget
          • Checkbox - Guest can select or unselects to denote yes or no
          • Dropdown - Provide guests with options and they can only specify one (e.g., their payment method)
          • Image Uploader - Have the guest take or upload a photo to the page
          • ID Verification - If enabled, perform ID verification on the guest by requiring them to take a photo of their ID and a selfie
          • Signature - Require the guest to sign their name
          • Initials - Require guests to initial as they go through the mini app
          • Rating - Have the guest give a rating out of 5 or 10
          • Accompanying Guests - Have guests provide information for their accompanying guests
          Layout
          • Separator - Include a line break or visual separation between different components
          • Table - Create a table where you can display reservation and guest information using message tokens
          • Reservations - Add the guest’s reservation information right in the Mini App
          • Cover Image - Add two images with one slightly in front of the other - best at the top of the Mini App with your logo in the smaller image and a unit photo behind it!
          Media
          • Image - A graphical image is embedded on the page (Images will be resized to 500x320 when added to the Mini App)
            • You can also use custom attributes in the image field to make it more customized for the guest. If you select Dynamically resolve image from token and replace the text with the custom attribute token, the system will pull the image link from the custom attribute based on the rule you set previously.
            • To add images to your custom attributes, please refer to this article: Advanced: Custom Attributes
          • YouTube Video - Embed a YouTube video straight into the Mini App so guests don’t have to switch tabs to learn more about your property (Only YouTube videos are supported at this time.)
          Interactive - If you want to include a regular hyperlink, you can use the format: [text](link)
          • Button - A button allows you to direct the guests to a different website or PDF and the color can be customized in your property’s Branding section
          • Button Grid - If you have multiple links, use a button grid to list them all
          • Directory - Use the Directory component to link guests to different places in your Mini App without having to create a list of buttons
          • Carousel - Clickable images with a description and the guest can scroll to the right to view more images
          • Link Cards - Stacked images with links that can be used to display various offerings
          • Expandable Section - Add an expandable section into your Mini App to initially hide information from guests if they’re not interested in learning more
          • Map - Embed a Google Map into your Mini App to make it easier for guests to navigate to your property
      • Zoom in/out of the phone screen preview - Can’t see the entire screen due to a display sizing issue? Click the -/+ to zoom the screen in and out
      • PUBLISH your Mini App! - Remember to save any changes you make by clicking SAVE CHANGES and then Publish in the top right
        • After you have published your Mini App, you can then send it to yourself to view by clicking the green arrow and providing your phone number
 
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View all of the components in a sample Mini App here: https://sys.akia.ai/mapp/3af64c66-5d93-4645-a322-b38bc3cdbd64
 

How Can I Format Text in My Mini App?

We support Markdown formatting in the Text Block component. This allows you to have bolded, italicized, or both within your text.

 
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Markdown allows you to use sms: mailto: and tel: to immediately direct the guest to open their respective app to complete the action to the number/email you provide afterward. Note that for SMS/Tel, you will need the + and the phone’s country code for it to work, and no spaces between any of the elements.

 
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What Should Be in the Bottom Bar?

Think of the bottom bar like your phone’s home screen app dock (the 4 apps you want easy access to) to determine what information is crucial for your guests to always have access to while staying at your property. For some properties, this may be arrival and departure instructions along with local activities; for others, it could be the guest’s door code and directions to their room and how to contact you if they need help - or a combination of these.

 

We recommend only having a maximum of 4 bottom bar pages to make each clickable on narrow phone screens as well as ensuring that the text isn’t cut off.

 

What Should Be in the Side Menu?

You can use the side menu for other easily accessible pages that cannot fit in the bottom bar. Guests can access the side menu by clicking the “═” symbol and they’ll see the list of pages. Some example side menu pages might be a TV Channel Guide, a reminder of the Property Rules, and Restaurant Recommendations.

 

What Should Be in “Other Pages”?

“Other Pages” are pages that can’t be directly accessed via the bottom bar or side menu and are best for miscellaneous pages that a guest might only need in certain circumstances. Common uses may be for AC/Heater Instructions, Pool Rules, and an Emergency Evacuation Plan.

 

How Can I Link to an “Other Page”?

With any URL-configurable component (Button, Button Grid, Directory, Carousel, Link Cards), you can change it to link to another page in the Mini App rather than a URL link. Select your “Other Page” here, so when a guest clicks on the button, they’re directed to a separate page to view their AC/Heater Instructions and can then navigate away by clicking on one of the pages in the bottom or sidebars.

 
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What Are Display Rules?

While editing an element, you will be able to see the toggle between Configuration and Display Rules. Configuration is your main editor, while Display Rules allows you to dynamically show components in your Mini App based on guest information such as their reservation details, arrival date, or personal data like age.

 

Even when you send the guests their Mini App upon booking, configure display rules for each component such that it automatically updates tailored to where the guest is on their guest journey.

 

Some use cases of these display rules could be as follows:

  • Reservation Status is Arrived: only show the pool gate code if the guest is on the property (dependent on Akia can receive Arrived status from your PMS as well)
  • Arrival Date is This Week: show the map component with your address as the guest’s arrival date gets closer
  • Arrival Date Before Today: only show your early check-in Collection if the guest’s arrival date is in the future
  • Departure Date is Today: prompt the guest to rate their stay only on the day of their departure
 
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How Can I Process Payments in My Mini App?

We support processing payments on any screen in your Mini App via Stripe. This can include requiring guests to pay their balance due or placing an authorization hold on the guest’s card.

 
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Our payment processor, Stripe, needs to be installed in Akia before these options show up.
 
  1. Install Stripe in Akia here: https://sys.akia.ai/integrations/apps/stripe. (You will need to make your account in Stripe to be able to process guest payments.)
      • Only Akia Admins can install Stripe, and only Stripe users will be able to view and manage any payments in Stripe.
  1. Click on the Mini Apps header and select the Mini App you want to add the payments to
      • Remember to click Edit in the top right to begin editing the Mini App
  1. Click on the three dots next to any screen click Payment Configuration
 
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  1. Navigate to the Settings tab where you can enable payment on the Mini App, allowing you to also specify Charges or Authorization amounts
      • Capture Payment: Prompt the guest to provide their credit card upon submission of the Mini App
      • Capture Payment Timing: By default, Akia will not charge the guest for their ordered items from the specified Collection until you accept the guest’s order on your Orders page. You can change this to process payment immediately when the order is created or completed as well.
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          Make sure all outstanding orders are completed before changing your Payment Timing to ensure all payments are collected.
      • Flag if Payment Succeeds: Have Akia track if the provided card is valid and if the required payment or authorization hold could process
        • In your automations, you can use the conditions Payment Succeeded and Authorization Held to control when certain messages (e.g. door code) are sent to the guest if their payment could be verified
        • Due to this flag being true/false, we strongly recommend not flagging if payment succeeds in multiple Mini Apps the guest might submit during their stay with your property - try limiting it to just the Registration Card or Rental Agreement
 
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  1. Upsells - Optionally allow guests to tip when they purchase an item from the collection, pay a specified tax amount, or add a flat delivery fee to the collection
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  1. Charges - List items the guest needs to pay for before submitting the Mini App, such as their balance due in addition to a mandatory resort fee
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  1. Authorization - Place a hold on the guest’s credit card that is automatically released after 7 days from when the guest submits the form (you will be able to charge their card even after the hold is released within Stripe)
      • The minimum hold value is $0.50 and Stripe will indefinitely keep the guest’s card information securely in their system
 
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Click Ok at the bottom to save the payment configuration, Save Changes in the top right of the Mini App editor to get out of the editing mode, and Publish to begin processing payments for guests!

 

Collections

On the Mini Apps page, you can create a new Collection. Think of these as a combination of menus and upsells that can be displayed in your Mini Apps.

 
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  1. Click + New Collection to create a collection manually and add items as needed. If you already have a list of items you want to include, you can select Upload CSV.
      • We only need 5 columns for the CSV upload:
        • Name: the name of the item the guest will see
        • Description: the description of the item
        • Image: image link for the item (needs to be an image link, not an image uploaded into the CSV)
        • On Tap URL: the link the guest is redirected to if they click on the item in the Mini App
          • Not required if the collection has Create Order selected
        • Price: the price of the item
      • Selecting Create Order will allow guests to purchase Collection items
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  1. Once the collection has been created, you can add the Collection component to your Mini App (at the very bottom of the right sidebar) and select which Collection you want to be shown.
      • There are different types of Tap Behavior depending on what you’re looking for
        • Load Detail Page (default): tapping the item will take the guest to another screen where the description is fully shown. If you also have Create Order
        • Navigate to URL: the guest is automatically routed to the specified URL
        • Add To Cart: tapping the item adds it to the cart, but it will not direct the guest to another screen like the Load Detail Page
      • Optionally change the layout to Carousel if you want the guest to scroll through the different options
      • Make the Collection required if the current page is intended for ordering that item (e.g. your early check-in screen should have the early check-in Collection required so the guest can make the request)
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  1. Make sure you enable payments in Payment Configuration if you’re allowing guests to purchase items
  1. Save Changes and Publish to make the changes viewable to guests!
 

For more assistance, view our payments article here: Payments

 

How Can I Set up Conditional Redirect in My Mini App?

  1. Click on the three-dot icon of the Mini App screen you want to add the redirect to
  1. Select Redirect on Submission
  1. Specify the redirect you want to do:
      • Screen: Redirect guests to another screen in the current Mini App
      • URL: Redirect guests to an external URL
      • Mini App: Redirect guests to another Mini App in your account
  1. Add any conditions for the redirect to occur. If you do not have any conditions, all guests will be redirected to the specified location.
 
Click on the three-dot icon and select
Click on the three-dot icon and select Redirect on Submission to configure
 
Specify which type of redirect you want to do and if you want to add any conditions
Specify which type of redirect you want to do and if you want to add any conditions
 

How Do I Edit a Mini App?

  1. Go to the Mini App header and click on the Mini App you want to edit
  1. Click on the page you want to edit, which will bring you to the page editor
  1. Click Edit in the top right to begin the editing session
  1. Click on any of the elements to modify the text/style in the sidebar
      • Click and hold an element to move it higher or lower on the page
  1. PUBLISH your Mini App in the top right corner to save
      • Optionally send it to yourself to confirm the formatting
 

How Do I Copy the Example Mini App You Showed Me?

See the screenshots below to view the backend configuration for this Mini App.

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First-page editor. Click on the three dots next to
First-page editor. Click on the three dots next to Home to add the multi-screen flow.
 
Use two separate text blocks to make “paragraphs”
Use two separate text blocks to make “paragraphs”
 
Only one signature component can be used on a page at a time, so if you need multiple signatures, you will need to create multiple pages in your Mini App.
Only one signature component can be used on a page at a time, so if you need multiple signatures, you will need to create multiple pages in your Mini App.
 
The Carousel component allows you to show off multiple images and links without requiring the viewer to continuously scroll down on the page.
The Carousel component allows you to show off multiple images and links without requiring the viewer to continuously scroll down on the page.
 
Use buttons to encourage guests to navigate to other pages in your Mini App or to external websites with more information.
Use buttons to encourage guests to navigate to other pages in your Mini App or to external websites with more information.
 
Use a button grid to direct the guest to different external sites without taking up the display.
Use a button grid to direct the guest to different external sites without taking up the display.
 

How to Send a Mini App to a Guest

In a Scheduled Message

Use the wand icon while you are creating your scheduled messages to link a Mini App. Hover over the Mini Apps section to select the appropriate Mini App.

 
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In a Manual Message

To send a guest a Mini App, you can select it using the wand icon in the message editor in any guest chat.

 
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If you find yourself needing to send Mini Apps frequently on the Mobile App, you can create a Macro and link the Mini App for easy access.

 

Use Cases

  1. 📖 Guest Brochure: Give guests a Mini App that contains their arrival/departure instructions, property information, house rules, and local activities.
      • Separate the information into different pages to mimic an actual hotel booklet/binder.
  1. 📝 Multi-Page Agreement: Have multiple pages to a physical rental agreement guests need to fill out before their stay? Mimic that in a Mini App by adding multiple steps to a page.
      • You can optionally have a Mini App just for Agreement purposes, or you can combine it with your guest brochure and include property information and local activities on other pages.
 

See Related

 
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