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The e-commerce industry is booming. According to statistics, at the end of 2019, it was worth $ 3.535 billion. It is year-on-year growth that increased revenue of $ 1.356 billion recently in 2014. There are no signs that the slowdown in growth – let alone the leveling off – will come in years.
In a growing sector, companies have plenty of opportunities for development. By learning about its processes, an e-commerce company can gain a more significant segment of the market. Workflow automation is a smart way for a company to improve its end result.
Websites that work 24 hours a day. You can pick up orders every hour of the day and every day of the week. Only very large companies can have staff working at the same time. For everything else, automating key processes keeps business signifying when your employees are present.
If that sounds like something your brand needs, we really want to read on. It will always cover e-commerce automation from all angles. You learned how workflow automation is and how it could benefit you. Then we share a selection of the most useful ways you might be able to automate your business processes.
What is workflow automation?
Workflow automation is a way for companies to simplify their processes.
The central premise is to identify repetitive tasks or any manual process that software, applications, or technology can better withstand. Then you take those tasks out of the hands of your employees. Instead of spending valuable staff hours, you do the same jobs automatically.
There are processes in all departments of your business that can be automated. From inventory management to email or human resource marketing, e-commerce automation can improve processes around the world.
I share a lot of ideas on how you can join a flowing party. First, though, talk about exactly why you want to do it.
Why use workflow automation for your e-commerce site?
As a small business owner, you need to understand and become an expert in growing business processes. There are three main ways workflow automation can help you.
Many e-commerce tasks are everyday and repetitive. This makes them less important.
What this means, however, is that if that human being has to do it, they incredibly need a lot of time. Take, for example, order management. This area of your business will require a lot of data entry. You may also need to send shipping emails to customers and print shipping labels. Order management software can automate the entire process.
Repetitive tasks create bottlenecks in your work. Instead of the work progressing smoothly, it slows down to creep while time-intensive work is done. A workflow automation solution can open up these bottlenecks. Everyday tasks are automated and completed in much less time. That’s when you started to see the effect of efficiency in your organization.
2. Accuracy of data and task.
In e-commerce, a lot of data is generated. Order details, customer data and stock numbers are just a few examples. To keep things running smoothly, your company needs to enter and store data in various systems. Prior to e-commerce automation, all data had to be entered and shared manually.
Where people are involved, so is human error. Even the most competent and careful worker will make occasional mistakes. These simple mistakes can create significant problems for snowballs. For example, improper stock recording can see that you are not fulfilling vital orders. With workflow automation, such errors are removed from the equation.
With the best automation tools, the likelihood of negative customer service due to human error can be reduced by as much as 65%.
You may feel a little worried about how a way to lose your employees from work has been described so far. That went beyond the truth.
Automation tools make the most of employees and use them as productively as possible. Workflow automation refers to superior business process management (BPM), not layoffs.
When you automate critical but repetitive processes, staff can focus on other things. They can turn their attention to tasks that require intelligence and personal service. Automation gives them more time to design new products. It frees them up to nurturing relationships or interacting with customers. The productivity of your business, therefore, will increase significantly.
E-commerce tasks for workflow automation
Online retailers have plenty of choices when it comes to automation technology. This latest report on the technical retail package provides a detailed breakdown. Poor ones will help you better understand how to automate repetitive processes or manual tasks. Here are seven business areas to which our workflow automation ideas apply:
- Customer experience and support
- Order approval
- Supplier and supplier on board
- Order management
Automate user experience and support
Many companies in the niche for e-commerce – and in other fields – are looking for ways to stand out from the crowd. Many turn to the customer experience (CX) as a differentiator. Improving customer interactions is a great way to boost loyalty. Here are five workflow automation ideas to improve CX.
1. Track and reward your most active customers.
For all types of businesses, customer retention is crucial.
The probability of selling to an existing buyer is much higher than that of selling to a new potential buyer.
One of the best ways to strengthen retention is to reward customers for their loyalty.
You can use some simple automation to track and reward engaged customers. Smart workflow automation tools allow you to tag customers based on what you buy. You can then set business rules for sending targeted marketing to people who reach a certain order value or number of purchases. For example, you can automatically email a discount code to a customer who has spent more than $ 200.
2. Sync clients to your email list.
Email marketing is essential for e-commerce business. Strategic, targeted email campaigns are a great way to drive more sales. Most companies use a dedicated email marketing platform. If you do, it’s easy to automate workflows to make the process treatable.
The best way to automate the process this way is to synchronize the email client with your CRM system. This way, you can ensure that you segment your email list as efficiently as possible. Take for example a potential customer who shows interest in a particular product. You can automatically add them to the relevant email list.
These customers will then find targeted marketing material relevant to their interests. This type of content increases the conversion rate from a potential customer. We talked a bit about general marketing automation.
3. Collect feedback after purchase.
If you want to improve CX, you must first understand the customer perception of your products. The best way to assess this is to simply ask questions. Seeking customer feedback is how successful brands recognize their weaknesses. Only then can they work to improve.
You can streamline workflows to automatically collect feedback. Once again, this involves creating automated email. You can use the Workflow Automation tool to send subsequent emails. They came out at a certain time after the sale. These automated emails show customers that you value their feedback. Over 40% of customers leave feedback because they believe the business cares.
4. Reach for negative criticism.
Customers who leave feedback inappropriate are more likely to offer negative reviews. Persek human nature to register dissatisfaction more willing than satisfaction. When your company gets a negative review, it is a very important response that you need to respond to. This shows the complainant and other customers that you care about solving the problem.
Control during operation of automation ensures that no mere criticism will go through the cracks. Let’s say, for example, that reviewers rate your brand with five stars. You can set up an automated process that identifies all reviews with two or fewer stars. You can then automatically view the members of the user team.
5. Mark and segment customers based on shopping behavior.
Analyzing and tracking customer behavior will help you customize CX. An important element of tracking customer behavior is segmenting the list. This means dividing your protectors according to their characteristics. You can segment them, for example, by age, gender, or order value.
Segmentation helps improve service to different types of customers. He has developed a process that you can fully automate using intelligent workflow tools. The requested data is located in the order management system or in CRM systems. Automation tools can use them to segment customers in a variety of ways, all without the need for staff input.
Work automation and marketing
Improving CX with automation means retaining customers. Another thing that online stores need to focus on is procurement. Only by winning new customers can a company grow and prosper. Buying customers is a central marketing priority of any brand. There are ways to improve that vital area of your business through work automation.
1. Automatically schedule posts on social media.
Social media is a powerful marketing channel for e-commerce. The number of global users of social networks is huge and growing. 54% of social media users research products through their preferred platform.
It is not surprising, therefore, that internet marketers devote so much time and attention to social media marketing. Effective social media marketing is an ongoing process. You need to constantly create and share content that appeals to your audience.
By automating processes in this area, your company can bring rewards to your social media presence without having to devote so many hours of work time. There are a multitude of web applications or other tools for automating social media. You can create posts en masse and then use them to schedule when and how they are distributed.
2. Education leads with continuous marketing.
The customer’s journey contains many points of contact. Not all customers will visit your website, find the product and buy it right away. Some may return several times. In between, they can spend time researching and considering buying.
If you have their contact information and contact permission, you can help make their decision. She led the main idea behind nurturing lead.
Automated lead care works in a similar way as customer retention via email. You can set up a process to send useful, compelling content to potential customers. Change the content properly and submit it periodically, and you can turn a fussy potential customer into a customer.
Things you might consider including marketing content can vary. These could be discount codes or informational posts that would beat objections. The best way to decide is to collect real-time data on customer behavior and get out of there.
Even what may seem like a more complex area of your business can benefit from automation. Think about how to order supplies from suppliers. At some point, you decide you need more stock. You then pick up a purchase order with your preferred supplier and arrange for its delivery. Despite no reason to automate the whole process.
With automation, you can receive orders raised according to incoming sales. When a purchase reduces your inventory to a predetermined level, an order can be generated automatically. You can even create rules about first-choice suppliers for different products.
Order tracking is also more pronounced with automation. You must switch between sheets, emails, and other documents. Everything takes place within one management system.
Boarding suppliers and suppliers
Change is something that can always lead to disruption in the business world. The primary example is when you need to switch vendors or add a new vendor. Lots of information to share between your company and those you work with all the time. You have started to need to share payment and tax information. Often we also need to get a new vendor to speed up your systems and procedures.
It all takes time. If you dedicate a team member to this, you lose out on what the employee usually does. An automated vendor portal can take that burden away from your employees. You can share and receive all details related to the vendor relationship through the website. Better faster, more accurate and allows your team to stay productive in other areas.
Workflow automation for order management
Order management is a key phrase for a vital element of online store operation. Advance the process by which customer orders are tracked and progressed from start to finish. A business process that overlaps project management, customer service and many other areas. From placing orders to sales, many business processes can be automated.
1. Shipping labels.
Shipping and delivery of orders is an important element of any e-commerce business. Failed delivery can be a big expense in the long run. Often distribution problems come down to small mistakes along the way. The worker may enter the address incorrectly on the shipping label or the order could be incorrectly recorded in your system as complete.
Workflow automation simplifies this part of your business making it much faster and more efficient. Implementing automation means you can do multiple tasks with a single click. This includes printing your shipping labels and properly marking orders as shipped. It can also include tracking delivery numbers.
2. Send reminders to customers to place an order.
Your customer contact should end after one purchase. After-sales support and continuous marketing are vital. If you also sell certain products, you may want to consider another important process.
How can you encourage customers to order their items after they spend? If you know when a customer will need more goods, you can automate the workflow for sending reminder emails at the exact exact time. That way customers will again be pushed into buying from you. You may even consider including a discount code or a job stamp offer.
3. Send abandoned emails with shopping carts.
Most people who add products to e-commerce shopping carts continue to buy them. According to the Baymard Institute, nearly 70% of wheelchairs are abandoned. We lost a lot of customers who disappeared. Abandoned shopping cart emails are a proven way to recover some of them.
Many tools can register when a customer leaves the cart on your site. After the period of your choice, the email automatically receives an attempt to return the customer. The great thing about this process is that the messages can be personalized. The email address can point to the products they have been added to and explain to you why they still want to buy them.
Automated inventory management
Inventory management is vital in all online stores. Proper inventory tracking and management can change everything. Underground, and you will be able to fulfill critical orders. Excessive inventory and depletion of valuable storage space. By automating inventory management, you can store and fill the breeze.
Inventory automation tools can make the following workflow a reality:
- Your sales system is receiving a new order.
- Inventory management software allocates inventory to order. You can even set rules to ensure it comes from the most convenient warehouse or store.
- The “ready to ship” label is attached to the order in your system.
- Order details, shipping labels and all other relevant information are sent to those in charge of warehouse management.
- Warehouse team members can select supplies, pack and ship out.
- Inventory recording was recorded and a new, accurate volume of inventory was recorded.
- If the inventory level reaches a predetermined low level, this triggers a notification that, in some cases, may even automatically trigger a purchase order from your vendor.
Not so much outbound sales are included in e-commerce. Most online stores rely on visitors to find their site and buy products. If your company has a sales team, automated workflows can simplify their lives.
1. Re-sales tasks.
Think about the seller. You’re probably painting a professional running bids and closing bids. Poor how it should be and how sellers would want it to be. In reality, repetitive and lengthy tasks can often be disrupted.
In addition to relationships and other tasks, such tasks can mean that sales staff spend only 24% of their time actively selling.
Automating everyday tasks can free up your sales team to do what works best. Automated workflows in CRM systems simplify processes, so all vendors need to do a click. For example, if new potential is added to the network, for example. Automation tools can instantly record your details, schedule a sales call, and assign that call to a sales agent.
2. Automate job tracking.
Making a sale requires a lot of work. The seller may need to contact the guide several times before finally turning them into a buyer. Automation is a great way to ensure that important events occur at the right time and run smoothly. Depending on how interactions with potential customers go, the seller’s next step changes.
You can set up automated workflows that reflect these different procedures. For example, if a sales call goes badly, an immediate job chance may be lost. An agent can mark a potential customer or business as lost in their automation tool. The next email or other communication can then be scheduled at a convenient point in the future. When that time comes, the tracking is sent automatically.
3. Automatically track your calls with potential customers.
When a sales team member makes multiple calls to potential customers, those calls must be tracked. The reps must stay at the top where they are at each contact. Work automation also plays a role here.
Vendors can establish processes to record all data and call data. This information is then at the agent’s fingertips when an investigation follows. By following the call properly, sales staff can avoid the wrong steps that could make them lose their jobs.
5 steps to integrate workflow automation into your business
By now, you should understand how useful business process simplification can be. Applying workflow automation software could significantly affect your productivity and, as a result, your end result. How should you incorporate workflow automation integration into your business? Easier than you might think.
1. Identify recurring tasks.
We’ve talked for a long time about the types of business processes you can automate with automation. Your first step towards automation in your company is to identify the most suitable ones for you.
Take a step back and look at current operations. Find bottlenecks in your daily workflow that are detrimental to your productivity. They raised the issue in order to avoid introducing the right automation solution.
2. Define business goals.
Once you identify the weak points of your business, you can think about how you can improve them. Consider the degree to which you want to improve efficiency, and the following effects they may have.
For example, if you find that employees spend time manually selecting inventory for orders, your goal could be to ship 20% more orders per day by automating inventory management or warehousing.
3. Choose the right workflow automation solution.
With that in mind, you know what to look for in a workflow automation solution. Extend the example above, for example, by looking for software focused on inventory management, order execution, and other logistics.
Then you can start intelligently analyzing and comparing your options. Check out the features and functions of the various automation tools on the market. Also look for testimonials or examples of existing use cases of any software. That way, be sure to choose the ideal solution for your business.
4. User training.
Even the best technological solutions are less effective if end users try to know how to make the most of them. Once the software is selected to be used, invest time, effort and funding in training your employees to use it.
Some owners or decision makers are saving in this area. They learn new software on their own and then try to teach their team how to move forward. Suffering looking for trouble. Train everyone in your company who uses a new solution from the beginning. This is the only way to ensure that the tool gets used to the maximum.
5. Measure. Measure. Measure.
Nothing in the business is static. When you introduce a new automation tool, you simply forget about it and move on to other things. Examine and evaluate the impact that the solution has. Did the changes in business processes help you achieve these goals?
If the answer is no, try to find out why. You may want to do something simple to solve all the problems. You may find that employees continue to use the software properly. On the other hand, you can learn that you can add or activate a different tool function to make it more effective.
As an e-commerce business, you have a lot of competition. It has never been easier for bad customers to shop online, and for them it has never been such a choice. To beat your rivals, you need to correct all your business processes. Why workflow automation is something you buy afford to be ignored.
Simplifying and automating workflows helps both efficiency and productivity. Software, bots and other technology can perform everyday tasks much faster than humans. They also create various types of small bugs that can become significant problems with a snowball.
When these jobs are automated, your employees can spend their precious time elsewhere. They can complete tasks that require human intelligence and attention. The above workflow automation ideas give you insight into ways you can unlock your company’s full potential.