With the world’s economy on decline, eCommerce has become more desirable, and many people realized that it is a much better way to conduct business. It has been estimated that by 2022, eCommerce sales will go up to as much as $6.54 trillion from the projected $4.13 trillion this year.
But while there is a positive projection on sales, emerging online industries and eCommerce shops are also growing. This means that the competition is also getting tougher and it can be challenging to start your own online business.
So how will you be on par with pioneering competitors and emerging eCommerce business owners?
The best solution is to be knowledgeable, fast, and most especially, resourceful. There are thousands of reference materials about how to start an eCommerce business. But the best are the ones that will teach you how to automate your business.
What is eCommerce Automation?
eCommerce automation refers to using software that is built to intelligently execute eCommerce processes and tasks. By integrating technology to sales fulfillment, marketing and customer services, eCommerce business is expected to run smoother compared to traditional, and complex business processes.
Automation intends to reduce the tasks that are done manually in the eCommerce business process while providing ease and security. It systematizes and secures the flow of data between your systems to ensure efficiency and accuracy.
10 Steps to Automate Your eCommerce Business
1. Automate inventory management
It can be tricky and time-consuming to manage inventory in the traditional way. This is even more difficult when stocks are in a different location other than the main office. Integrating automation tools can let you keep an eye to your inventory remotely and in real-time.
2. Marketing automation
Online marketing is crucial in promoting the business. Using modern marketing tools is a strategy that is effective at achieving customer retention up to 90% and increasing the purchase rate at up to 250%.
3. Automate accounts
Centralizing the date makes it easier to manage accounts that are related to the financing side of the business. This would allow seamless data sharing where you can easily find important data anytime.
4. Content production workflow
Captivating content is very essential in lifting your status up in the industry. There are various ways to automate content production and these two processes are highly significant:
Product Photography Automation. Product photos are the face of the business and it is only proper to mind them at all times. Because of the redundant tasks involved with product photography, automating the process will cut the workflow more than half, giving you more time for more vital tasks like editing.
Image Processing Automation. Photographing products is only a chunk of the whole content production process. Image processing automation is a great way to make a good impression using product photos. Some tools, like Removal.AI are powered by AI technology that makes image processing fast. Before this technology, entrepreneurs only rely on either Photoshop or an expensive photo editing service to prepare images for content production. Now, it is easy to automatically remove background from image, make banners, create imposing advert materials, and more. Removing background is essential with effective eCommerce marketing so it is a must to look into it.These tools can even batch process images so it is never a problem to edit thousands of images all at once.
5. Automate sending out emails
Cart abandonment is a common problem for most online businesses. With automation, the system can identify visitors who did not add items into the cart and those who are yet to check out their carts. Various steps can be done to follow up these visitors and you can program the system to automatically send emails in order to encourage conversions.
6. AI for automating customer services
Business interactions can be automated to manage the customer services better. It is also a way to improve the customer experience when they are able to get immediate answers for their concerns.
7. AI for automating customer services
Automate reviews- Customer reviews are powerful convincing factors. Sending out automatic emails that request reviews for the post-purchase process is one of the best ways to ensure that products and services are getting reviewed by actual buyers.
8. Automated invoicing
Another way to easily keep track the business finances is through automated invoicing. This is very important if you want to keep records of transactions.
9. eCommerce fulfillment automation
Streamlining the whole process of sending tracking information, printing shipping labels, and packing orders will help save time and effort. Mistakes are also eliminated since all the data is kept in a secure, organized, and centralized server.
10. Handling refunds and replacements
It is inevitable to have refunds and replacements but how you handle it will make a big difference in enhancing the customer service. Automation lets you handle these things with ease as the system will identify eligible returns, replacements, and refunds.
What Are The Benefits of Automation in eCommerce?
The general purpose of eCommerce automation is to make the business processes quicker and easier. More than these, there are plenty of other benefits that arise from using modern technology.
1. It Saves Time
Managing an eCommerce site is time consuming as there are a lot of things to do. You need to manage your products and product images, write content, strategize and plan marketing campaigns. It might seem endless, and in truth, you will not be able to fit them all to your schedule if done manually.
Through automation, you can reduce repetitive and complex tasks and you won’t need to track everything on your own. This means that you will have more time in improving your business and plan your marketing strategies.
2. It Reduces Business Costs
Another good thing about automating your eCommerce business is that you don’t need to have a lot of employees working for you. Through the systematic process flow, automatic data storage and retrieval, and innovative solutions of software applications, you can do many tasks in seconds that could take hours if done by one person.
Aside from cutting the labor cost, costs due to human errors will also be reduced if you have a dependable and reliable software to manage different tasks.
3. It Improves Productivity
By leaving other tasks to automation software, you can increase your focus and take on more important tasks that need to be accomplished. While you save time from doing repetitive tasks, you can manage more areas in your business that are also great factors for your success.
Automation brings about a structured business process and better system flow. It is a key factor to maximize the potential of your business as it gives you a bigger room to work on improving your it constantly, overtime.
4. It Improves Business Intelligence and Operations
As mentioned, automation provides greater opportunity to improve your business. It is a must that you must always be in search of ways to provide better customer experience and be available when they are in need of assistance.
It is also important that you remain flexible and always informed of new trends to continue growing. It is good to take advantage of the data gathered by automation tools and analyze it to make better decisions for your business and source out more tools to help you out if necessary.
5. It Boosts Your Marketing Campaigns
eCommerce Marketing automation can also help in your marketing campaigns. Specific SaaS tools can assist in building your email marketing templates, and send them out to multiple recipients. There are also automation tools for social media and SEO that will boost your shop and help your brand gain exposure.
Automation is a huge factor in enabling your eCommerce business towards success. With all the different business processes that are involved in the business, having automation tools make the workflow more efficient, convenient, and cost-effective. This is important if you after competing against bigger and more established companies.
With automation and various eCommerce business tools, you have a way to elevate your business.