Merge fields allow you to personalize your assets by adding your contacts’ names or other information.

Merge fields serve as placeholders that Ontraport fills with information from your contact records. For example, if you use the merge field [First Name] in an email message and send it to 10 contacts, all contacts will see their own name in your greeting.

There are also special merge fields and formatting available.

Table of contents

Populating merge fields
Add merge fields to assets
Set up default merge fields

Populating merge fields

For your merge fields to display and pull values from visitors’ contact records, your page needs to be able to identify who is visiting.

There are a few ways Ontraport can tell your pages who is visiting:

Cookied data

Contacts are cookied when they:

  1. Click an email link
  2. Fill out a form
  3. Log in to a membership site
  4. Click a tracked link
Membership sites

When a visitor logs in to your membership site, the site knows exactly who is visiting your pages.

Personalized URLs (PURLs)

PURLs pass your contacts’ information through the URL. PURLs only work on HTTP pages and not HTTPS. This type of personalization is best for thank you pages that don’t contain sensitive information.

Add merge fields to assets

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When you’re editing text elements on Ontraport Pages or messages, you’ll find merge fields in the dropdown menu merge field dropdown icon.

For the most part, merge fields appear as the name of the field you’re merging surrounded by brackets. For example, when you select the First Name field, it’ll appear in your content as [First Name].

Find details on formatting merge field dates and text stylization here.

Set up default merge fields

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You can use default merge fields to ensure you don’t display blanks on your pages and emails. This helps with contacts whose records have values that are missing.

If you add a merge field to an email and your contact doesn’t have a value saved for that field, your email will still make sense with filler content from default merge fields.

For example, say you have an email that says, “Hi, [First Name]!”

If your contact doesn’t have a first name saved, and you do not have a default merge field, your email will start, “Hi, !”

But with default merge fields, you can choose a word or phrase to fill in the blank when your contact doesn’t have a value saved.

You could add “friend” as your default merge field for the first name field, and it will read, “Hi, friend!”

Here’s how to set up your default merge fields:

    • Go to contactsSettingsDefault merge fields.
    • Type a default value into the fields of your choice.

  • Click save.