Automation for Your Shopify Store
As a Shopify store owner, there is a never ending stream of items on your to-do list. From marketing to operations to customer service, it can be a struggle tackling all the tasks that come with running your own business. If you’re at the point where your store is looking to grow but you’re being spread way too thin, this might be a good time to look into ways you can automate aspects of your business.
Automation can be integrated in a wide range of your business activities, from marketing to order fulfillment. Luckily, the Shopify app store contains a lot of great plugins that you can easily install and start automating certain tasks right away.
What is Automation?
In eCommerce, automation is the use of software applications that create a sequence of processes to streamline a task with minimal human assistance. In other words, you can use automation to replace tedious tasks that you were once doing manually, leaving you more time to focus on marketing and growing your business.
Below are some examples of how you can utilize automation for different aspects of your Shopify business.
Automation for Merchandising
For online fashion retailers, it’s common to display recommended products on product pages to drive conversions. If you have a large product catalogue, manually assigning recommendations for each product can be extremely tedious and time-consuming. Using Shopify apps like Simile Upsell allows you to utilize their AI technology that analyzes your product images to find visually similar items as recommendations. Upon install, Simile will automatically sync your products and create recommendations for each product without you needing to lift a finger.
Simile Bundles can create product bundles for your product pages based on your store’s data and an Amazon-like algorithm. Like the Upsell app, Simile Bundles will automatically sync your products upon install and generate smart product bundles to help increase your customer’s basket size.
Automation for Marketing
With the growth of eCommerce, customers now have a lot of options when shopping online. This makes marketing all the more essential to differentiating from your competition and growing your business. You can use email automation marketing tools to instantly send out communications upon triggers like abandoned carts, new subscribers or birthdays. Having these processes automated allows you to scale your business and grow your customer base while still maintaining a personalized marketing approach.
Although Mailchimp is no longer offered as a direct integration with Shopify, the Shopify App Store contains other tools for marketing automation like Privy that offers a set of conversion and marketing tools, including abandon-cart emails and exit-intent popups and banners. Marsello provides customer retention automation through retargeted marketing campaigns and loyalty programs that will automatically reward customers with points for spend, referral, product reviews and more. Kit acts as a virtual AI assistant for Facebook marketing, suggesting and actually creating marketing campaigns for your business.
Automation for Order Fulfillment
You can utilize apps like ShipMonk to automate order fulfillment by sending products directly from your suppliers to be stored in ShipMonk’s warehouses. When a customer makes a purchase on your store, ShipMonk will receive the information directly and ship out the order without any action required from you.
Many print-on-demand services like Printful also automate order fulfillment for your Shopify store, enabling you to save inventory costs as well as time from manually packing your orders. Orders are synced automatically and processed right away so that your customer can receive their items as soon as possible.
Choosing the Right Automation Tools
With the abundance of apps available on the Shopify App Store, it can be difficult deciding on the right one for you. First, we suggest conducting a time audit so you can see the breakdown of your tasks and identify the most time-consuming and repetitive ones. Label these tasks as high-value or low-value, depending on the impact it has on the growth of your business. Focus on automating the low-value tasks so that more of your time is spent on business activities that offer more value to your eCommerce business.
Once you know which tasks you want automated, you can start researching into the available apps to find the best fit for your needs. Reach out to your trusted network for recommendations, dig into expert resources online and make sure to thoroughly read customer reviews. Many apps on Shopify offer a free trial period, allowing you to test drive numerous apps before committing to purchasing.
If you’re interested in visual merchandising automation, check out Simile Upsell and Simile Bundles and see how AI technology can help free up your time and boost sales.