If you’re into business on the web whether an online shop, affiliate marketing, or so on… you can’t disagree with the idea of having an advantage when using an email marketing strategy to engage with your community which leads you to a higher opportunity for monetizing your brand.
Recently, one of the largest community on the web, the open-source community released the project that you would want to take a look at if you’re in a situation of searching the right tool for your email marketing. They call the tool Mautic Marketing Automation or Mautic, in short.
Mautic is a Marketing Automation tool as I’ve understood which was commercially released at mautic.com (for the hosted plan products) and mautic.org (for the self-hosted project which is free, one-hundred percent).
This tool is nothing less like Aweber, ConstantContact, MailChimp and many other Email Marketing or Autoresponder tools that could help you engage with your users from your website to their inboxes. It’s richly featured like those were mentioned or maybe better such as the intuitive interface and the good news is that it’s free! What more could you ask for?
So if the information above is enough for you to get started or at least try the tool, you can follow along with the installation process using your cPanel web hosting account.
Installing Mautic using Softaculous with cPanel
To get started, sign-in to your cPanel account and find Softaculous (Script Installer) or any available Auto Script Installer you have in your cPanel.
Second, find Mautic (ready-to-install) application at the search bar on the top left corner of the Softaculous panel.
Third, Install Mautic by hitting the button Install Now.
After that, you will see another screen with all the details you will need to fill up for your Mautic application’s successful installation. Kindly go through and follow the screenshot using your own details:
- Choose your Protocol, Domain and Directory/Subfolder (it can be empty).
2) Fill up the Admin Account details and press the Install button.
Once done, you will see another screen with details of your account administration for Mautic. But before we begin logging in, we should setup first the cron jobs in your web hosting account as one of the configurations for Mautic to work.
Cron Jobs Configuration For Mautic
In this content, I will show you how to setup your cron jobs for your Mautic application manually
(which is quite tricky) and instantly with the help of a plugin.
First is the Manual Setup (which I do prefer if you’re serious about your Mautic technical journey).
Manual Cron Jobs Setting Illustration:
The illustration/image shown above is an example of a Mautic cron jobs setting. The blurred path should be the mautic installation path which were configured in a cPanel hosting account.
Cron Jobs Configuration Details
So if you’re wondering how I get the details above, let me cite about the process in the next context further, but before anything else, I want you to understand first what is a “Cron” and see this video to get familiarize with the interface of Cron Jobs in the cPanel.
As what you’ve learned, a Cron Job basically is a series of tasks that a system runs within from script file. So for your Mautic instance to work automatically in regards to updating contacts, campaigns, sending emails and etc. within a specific time intervals, you will need to configure the cron jobs that is required for the application to work as it should.
If you’re still in doubt, there’s a lot of tutorials on the web to learn more. And I highly recommend that you read the Mautic documentation about it when configuring your Cron Jobs for the first time.
In this walkthrough, I’ll assume you do not know anything about it. So let’s go through the first step about configuring your Mautic Cron Jobs.
Setting up Cron Jobs is quite simple. The only tricky part is getting the right details for your command if you’re getting started, and the simplest way to do this (if you really can’t figure it on your own) is to ask your web host provider.
Five (5) Parts of Cron Jobs
You need to know that there are five (5) parts of the Cron Job you will need to configure with some commands.
Here’s a quick look and descriptions:
- 0,15,30,45 (Let’s call this a Schedule for the sake of this tutorial)
- /usr/local/bin/php (your PHP path or ask your hosting provider)
- /home/your-domain-directory/mautic-folder-if-any/app/console (your mautic path)
- mautic:webhooks:process (sample mautic command to process webhooks)
- /dev/null 2>&1 (to disable the email notifications when running a cron job)
I know it’s quite tricky as I’ve said earlier but you don’t really have to understand everything. Just try to figure out the pieces above.
So how do you get these details?
Let’ start with the Schedule. This is the time interval schedule when running a task or a cron job where you can get from the article of Cron Jobs from the Mautic Documentation).
Let’s see how it looks:
As you can see. The left part with red boxes are the schedules and the right corner, the related Mautic commands. The above image illustrates specific Mautic commands for each specific schedules.
These schedules are the ones recommended by Mautic Team, available on their documentation. Kindly navigate to it to get the latest update. But of course, you can still configure whatever you want (if you know what you’re doing) but I highly recommend to use the ones shown, especially if you’re running your Mautic application in a shared hosting platform, like us on our Premium Hosting.
The PHP Path
Next is the PHP path. The PHP path is usually the sample path I showed in my illustrations but to make sure it’s right for you, kindly contact your hosting provider.
It should look like this: (/usr/local/bin/php) or this (/usr/local/cpanel/3rdparty/bin/php), but if you’re using a VPS, it might be like the one shown on the Mautic Documentation which is only this “php” without the quote.
The Mautic Path
The next one is the Mautic path. This the home path where your Mautic application was installed at. If you’re not familiar with it, you can get the path from your Mautic Account on the Configuration Settings.
Kindly follow the steps below:
- Log in to your Mautic Account and hover over the gear icon setting on the Dashboard at the right top corner.
- Click that and navigate to the Configuration Settings.
- Copy the “path-value” under the “Path to the cache directory” setting as shown below and replace the “cache” text into “console”.
It might look like this: /home/your-domain-directory/mautic-folder-if-any/app/console
So if you just did this quick steps, you should literally know already your Mautic installation directory console path or what we do call, Mautic path for the sake of Cron Jobs tutorial content for Mautic.
Disable Email Notifications Command
Now, the last part is the command to disable the email notifications when running the cron jobs. Because if you do not set this up, it would surely hurt your server every time your cron jobs triggers. So we need to tell our server that we do not allow the default setting of notifying us about any of these tasks.
It should look like this: /dev/null 2>&1
So if everything should be ready, assuming you noted all of the details on a piece of paper or a notepad like mine below:
The sample illustration above is the configuration setup of my personal cron jobs in my cPanel account for Mautic.
I’ve selected the required and some optional set of commands based on the Mautic documentation. For more details about these, please check on their site in regards.
Setting Up the Cron Jobs Configuration
When you setup the cron jobs, all you have to do is to search or navigate the Cron Jobs icon in your cPanel account.
Click the Cron Jobs as illustrated above (with #2) and then you will see this interface below:
Slowly scroll down until you find the section of Add New Cron Job as shown below.
Remember the five (5) parts of our of set cron jobs we noted earlier? This is where you will input those.
Please follow along with the screenshots.
To get started, go ahead and input all specific Schedules for each Mautic commands into the Minute text-box.
But I like to do it this way before anything else to get the default configuration for the other settings under the Minute text-box and let me save my time editing all of it, one by one.
Now, after selecting Once Per Five Minutes (setting) under the Common Setting (drop-down box), you will see an interface which looks like this illustration below:
This is the time you will input all your Cron Jobs configurations from your note, and as for me, you find it illustrated below:
First, find and replace this value “*/5” under the Minute text-box with the schedules you would want to use for your Cron Job and then also typed-in the Cron Job command along underneath the Command text-box (which has an empty value at the moment). In this tutorial, I will use the recommended configurations listed on Mautic Cron Jobs Documentation.
After adding all the configurations or your Cron Jobs based on your note, it should look like this:
If it does, you’re nearly in a good shape for having a successful installation of the Mautic Marketing Automation (self-hosted free).
In the next post, I will blog about how to configure your new Mautic Account to sending your first Campaign using this awesome Email Marketing Automation tool.
By the way, I’d like to know your thoughts about Mautic or this post. Please share your encounter while installing it in the comments section below or join the community forums.
P.S. We recently setup a new Meetup Communities for learning and coaching within Facebook Group, as well in person. In behalf of Kind TechGroup, I would like to invite you to further your knowledge and share your thoughts with the like-minded individuals.