Replacing the Contact Export API

Nathan Begbie Updated by Nathan Begbie

At Turn, we know how important it is that you get insights in to your users. In order to facilitate this, we built the contact export API, which could export all user data in an excel sheet or JSON file.

However, we run in to a number of issues with the way we had implemented this feature.

  • Timeouts were an issue for organisations with large numbers of contacts
  • There was no way to allow for redacting certain user information
  • There was no way to filter based on when a contact joined the organisation

In order to resolve these issues, we used a similar approach to our messages export as part of the Data Export API. This new contacts export API endpoint has some distinct differences from the old contact API.

  1. Before requesting the data itself, you must first describe your request to Turn, i.e. what data you wish to be scrubbed and when you want the contacts from, by date of creation.
  2. Secondly, you must make multiple requests, as the API will only allow you to pull 1000 contacts at a time
  3. Finally, while the old API allowed you to get the data as JSON or in an Excel file, the new API only allows for JSON.

We're planning on removing the functionality for the old contacts API at the end of March 2022. We'll be monitoring and getting in contact with those organisations that are still using the old contacts API and helping them to shift over to the new API.

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