Managing an online store is a massively laborious affair that depending on your business practices, can well exceed over 40 hours every week. Discovering simple tips and tricks along the way can help you shave off a few minutes here and there, especially as you learn the ins and outs of your industry, eCommerce platform, and utilized software.
But when it comes down to brass tax, there's really only way to significantly cut back on your daily work load: automated processes. In today's technologically advanced age, new services and apps are emerging on a daily basis, serving to alleviate merchants of the tedious, tiresome work associated with nearly every aspect of running an online store.
Take a look at the following five areas that can be easily automated to save you invaluable time and energy better spent elsewhere.
An online store is only as successful as its marketing efforts, and if this is an area you've yet to automate, it's the best place to start. Numerous apps offer merchants an easy way to send automated emails based on a shopper's preferences and shopping habits.
Sending these emails in a timely manner is critical to your marketing efforts effectiveness. Quickly reengage customers who've abandoned your cart or use a customer's purchase history to start a campaign. The possibilities are endless with automated email, and can only lead to increased conversions and sales.
There are numerous aspects of shipping that can be automated. Perhaps you're tired of listing, packing and shipping inventory? If so, a dropshipper may be the best solution for your business. An automated dropshipping solution leaves all the physical, strenuous work to vendors, distributors or fulfillment centers, so that you're never left holding the box.
If you're looking to ship your inventory from your own warehouse, however, there are still countless shipping tasks that can be easily automated. Printing labels, emailing shipping notifications, and updating order statues are just a few shipping related tasks that can be managed by automated shipping software. If you'd to cut back labor costs and get orders out faster, an automated shipping process is the smart and efficient solution.
If you're like 99% of the world's population, the word “taxes” doesn't incite a feeling or sense of positivity. Taxes are a tedious, extremely time-consuming affair that unfortunately, is an obligatory component of running an online store.
Managing and updating taxes is a real nightmare, particularly since rates and rules change every year across thousands of jurisdictions. States tax, county tax, city tax, special taxes – for the average business owner, there are just too many complex taxes to stay on top of.
Automating your taxes will not only eliminate unavoidable human error, but it will save you an untold number of migraines too. A full service tax solution will ensure orders are always processed with real-time tax calculation for every jurisdiction in existence, and can even manage your collecting, filing and remittance processes as well.
If you're not a fan of social media's growing popularity, but would still love to market this massive sales channel, an automated social media process is the way to go. Numerous solutions exist that will allow you post content and updates on platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, LinedIn, Google+ and more, regardless if you're napping or away on vacation. Some apps even offer analytic tools so that you can see which of your posts are garnering the best response.
As online shopping continues to skyrocket and reshape the commerce landscape, more and more incidents of cybercrime are emerging, costing merchants billions of dollars every year. As an online retailer, your store is at risk of fraud on a daily basis, but even more so during the holiday season when many merchants let their guard down.
Using an automated fraud detecting program will allow you to identify potentially fraudulent orders before they're ever processed, saving you an untold amount of lost revenue. Typical information assessed includes IP address, banking information and mailing address, factors that would take hours, if not days, to check manually. Automated fraud protective programs can ensure your store isn't eCommerce's next victim, and can provide you with some much needed peace of mind.
Managing an online store is an exciting adventure that can yield big rewards for you, your employees, and your business. Finding ways to reduce your workload, increase efficiency and improve conversions is just as essential to the long-term success of your business as is choosing the right eCommerce platform. Start finding ways to automate your most dreaded eCommerce tasks and you may soon find your business is on an even faster path to success.