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If you’re running a small business and the rest of your life at the same time, it can be truly difficult to do everything your eCommerce business needs to keep growing. It can be especially difficult to perform all the autonomous, uninteresting, day-to-day activities that your business asks of you.
Luckily there are some amazing tools online that will help you automate your business and free up that time you were spending doing menial business tasks. We’ve curated a list of 5 simple ways to automate and boost your dropshipping business, while you’re busy doing other things.
Why Use Automation in eCommerce?
Automating your eCommmerce business frees up your time so you can spend it on the things that really matter. If you have a program that saves you 15 minutes sending emails, that’s 15 more minutes you can spend building your business plan or optimizing your online store.
Knowing that: Here is how to Automate your eCommerce business!
1. Abandoned Cart Emails and More: Klaviyo
A staggering amount of customers browse online and never buy anything. Even if a customer adds a product to their cart, they might not check out. Estimates say that almost 75% of carts are abandoned online, so what can you do about it?
A lot of business owners may reach out to high ticket carts and get in contact with them, but this is something that can and should be automated. Many of the eCommerce platforms online like Wix and Shopify have built in tools for sending abandoned cart recovery emails, so if you’re using one of those all you’re need to do is add that personal touch to the email.
If your platform doesn’t offer abandoned cart emails, then we’d suggest you take a look at Klaviyo because of its intuitive design and the powerful things it automates.
You can even build A/B testing into your abandoned checkouts so you can iterate and optimize your business’ communication without wasting too much time pouring over analytics.
Klaviyo can also take care of your entire email marketing strategy and be your mainstay for reaching out to customers across multiple sites and platforms. Klaviyo itself costs $20 to start and gets a little more expensive as you add more subscribers to your email list.
Other email automation services are similarly priced.
2. Customer Loyalty: Smile.io
There is a theory by Kevin Kelly that an artist only needs 1000 true fans that are willing to spend $100.00 a year to make a steady living.
The same is true within eCommerce. Repeat customers are infinitely more valuable as brand ambassadors and steady sources of income. In fact, 8% of eCommerce website visitors account for 41% of revenue. This means that recurring customers are incredibly valuable.
The difficult part is that customer loyalty is a traditionally high investment. 80% of eCommerce marketing spend is used for acquiring new leads. Relationships take a long time to build and sometimes business owners like you don’t have time for that. That’s where tools like Smile.io come in.
There is a reason that huge corporations like Starbucks have loyalty programs and Smile.io (and similar tools!) offer a powerful loyalty program right off the bat that will automatically track and reward customers for buying products, referring friends and liking you on social media. Better yet, it’ll do all of this without asking you to lift a finger.
Ensuring customer loyalty and saving time is an unbeatable combination.
3. Shipping and Fulfillment: Shipstation/Spocket
If you’re tight on time and looking to start your eCommerce business with as much eCommerce process automation as possible, then we’d suggest starting with Spocket.
Spocket is a dropshipping app that automates dropshipping in a much more hands-off process than building or stocking your own physical products. If you’re starting your business while working on your full-time job, Spocket will give you the best chance at success.
For business owners who stock their own products, we’d suggest using Shipstation to automate the shipping process and take away the headache and hassle. Shipstation allows you to ship multiple products at once, print off shipping labels at home, and offers heavy discounts off shipping labels, so you’re saving time and money.
Additionally, Shipstation has powerful integrations with some of the biggest names in the eCommerce game, like Shopify and Wix, that will ensure Shipstation is a great option for you and your business.
Finally, Shipstation is only $9.00 a month for up to 50 shipments. Even past that point, you’re never paying more than you’ll likely save on labels, and if you’re shipping 50 products a month the jump from $9.00 to $29.00 will be well worth it.
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4. Customer Tracking and Emails: Privy
Everyone who visits your site is a potential customer, even if they are only on your website for a moment, they may come back at a later date and buy something. It takes over 4 impressions to get a customer to trust your brand and buy from you.
This is why it’s important to grab their email so you can market to and convince them later. This is where Privy comes in. Privy (and other apps like it) offer free popups or banners that can trade the customer their email address for a discount code that they can use on their next purchase.
With Privy, you can design and integrate beautiful popups and banners for absolutely free. There are paid plans that also include elements like emails, but the best part of Privy is the on-site email gathering, and you can’t beat the price for that.
5. Social Media Updates and Posting: Hootsuite
Posting on Twitter might not seem time-consuming at first glance, but once you have six different social media profiles for your eCommerce business it can be quite time consuming to post on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and more. Additionally, social media is a game of consistency, if you want to stay front of mind with your customers, you need to post quite often.
Enter Hootsuite. Hootsuite is a powerful social media management tool that lets you post to multiple channels from one dashboard and allows you to schedule posts. Instead of spending an hour every second day to ensure all of your social media is updated, you can spend one afternoon to schedule every post you know you need during the month.
Hootsuite is also doubly powerful when it comes to promoting sales and product releases. Instead of posting on each Social Media platform one at a time, you can have it post on all of them simultaneously, so your fans will all learn about the promotion at the same time.
Get started with automation and build a store that runs the boring stuff by itself. Make the time to focus on converting aspects like marketing, strategy and outreach a priority.
With these simple and cost effective tools, you’re bound to save some time and really dive into the fun and exciting world of eCommerce.