All business owners know that time is the most valuable resource. With an ever-growing list of tasks to complete and only twenty-four hours in a day, finding time to juggle all your business demands can be exhausting. Especially if you intend to scale your ecommerce.
So, how is a full time business owner supposed to fulfill 24/7 orders, process payments, dispatch shipments, stock inventory, manage employees, oversee marketing campaigns, oversee customer service, and read customer reviews all at once?
Simple: automate your ecommerce business.
Automation is laying the groundwork for future technology, and now it’s being implemented in tools designed specifically to support ecommerce businesses like yours. Ready to put all your meticulous, time-consuming tasks on autopilot? Here is an overview of ecommerce automation, along with the top 5 ways you can automate your ecommerce business.
How Does eCommerce Automation Work?
Essentially, ecommerce automation uses software to take manual tasks and turn them into automated workflows. You can designate workflows to do things like trigger notifications, automatically send internal and external emails, generate support tickets, and a variety of other tasks. Workflows can also be customized to require multiple conditions be met in order to run, allowing you to create highly specific automations for whatever your business demands.
On the surface, automation might sound like a threat to your employees, but this is an inaccurate perspective. Automated systems do not replace workers; rather, automation frees up your team so that you all have more time for customer interaction, creativity, big-picture thinking, and positive team building. In other words, automation allows everyone to do the work they’d much rather be doing.
Some popular examples of automated online business systems for ecommerce include:
- Shopify is one of the most well-known ecommerce platforms, and offers powerful applications designed for automation like Stock Sync, Shop Workflow Automation, and Arigato Automation.
- WooCommerce is great to power stores on WordPress, and offers a huge variety of extensions and automation options.
- Shift4Shop is the leading free ecommerce platform, and it comes equipped with tons of automation options, like email autoresponders, customer groups, and some of the best marketing automation for ecommerce.
5 Ways to Automate eCommerce
1. Track Customers and Reward Engagement
Customer retention is crucial for business success, especially in ecommerce. Data shows that increasing retention rates by just 5% can boost your ecommerce sales from 25%-95%. Rewarding loyal customers with free gift cards or free delivery on orders over a certain amount incentivizes customers to continue shopping with you. Active Campaign is an automation tool that can track customers, segment customers based on shopping history, and automatically email loyal customers with gifts.
2. Gather Feedback
In the world of ecommerce, honest feedback is the most valuable thing a customer can give you. Encourage customers to leave reviews with automated emails each time a purchase is made. Automated follow-up emails are sometimes the best way to ensure your ecommerce business receives helpful reviews. Include a link in the email so that when customers click it, it takes them back to the review page on your ecommerce website.
3. Return Customers to Their Abandoned Carts
Abandoning a shopping cart in public is awkward. But abandoning an online shopping cart is as simple as putting your phone down—in fact, 75% of ecommerce customers end up abandoning their shopping carts, never to return. But email reminders are a great way to bring customers back to their shopping experience with your ecommerce store. You can automate abandoned cart emails by integrating your ecommerce software with a mailing provider so that the reminder emails send themselves.
4. Schedule Automatic Social Media Posts
For many people, it’s easy to get sidetracked and waste time with social media. Fortunately, there are many tools available to streamline your business’s social media processes so that you rarely have to log in yourself. Post Studio – Auto Posting on the Shopify app, for example, can automatically post products to your Instagram, Facebook, and/or Twitter pages on a daily basis.
5. Automate Inventory Management
One of the most frustrating experiences for an online customer is when an item of interest is out of stock. But you can curb this issue by automating your inventory management to keep track of low-stock items. This way, you can always stay one step ahead of business and maintain an efficiently stocked inventory at all times. On Woocommerce, you can determine the thresholds yourself for when the low-stock notification gets triggered.
Staying up-to-date in the software industry is a full-time job. And learning how to automate your ecommerce business can be a challenge. That’s why many companies turn to business partners like KitelyTech, INC. for assistance. At KitelyTech, INC., we work with companies to develop and implement new software solutions and marketing strategies. Call us at (800) 274-2908 to discuss your business’s software needs and find out how we can help.