5 essential tasks to automate on Shopify now for better operating your online business

Most of the successful business will often tell you “every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.”  so ask yourself…are you organizing your business to the optimum? 

Especially if you’re into dropshipping then you need to go the extra mile in organizing your orders since you are dependent on the third party for delivering a product to your customer.

Research shows that nearly 83% of small-scale business owners believe that being organized is an essential part of their business. 63% of dropshipping businesses correlate organizing with business profitability.

Would you believe it if I told you that most of the businesses still rely on the papers, files, and folders for organizing their business? Check out these numbers given by the same research:

85% | File Folders

69% | Shelves and Drawers

68% | Calendars

64% | Storage Containers

61% | Sticky notes

Now, I am not saying that there’s anything wrong with it but do you think that it’s a good practice to use these old methods in this era of technology?  

So if you want to achieve success and earn good profits, you need to be organized but the bigger question here is, HOW?

Automation is the answer to your question.

It’s time to scale-up internal methods for growing your business in today’s volatile market. You need to invest in eCommerce automation tools that can help you save time and keep you organized.

If you’re using Shopify for conducting online business you’ve made the right choice, to begin with. After all, Shopify is the third top e-commerce platform with a market share of 9.97%. However, it can get a bit confusing if you are not familiar with the platform or if you are having multiple stores from one account.

Integrate your Shopify account with an all-in-one web app that can handle warehousing, inventory, orders, purchases, shipping, returns, accounts – all from one place. A centralized platform to help you manage your entire business from a single dashboard. Better still, you can also manage multiple stores/marketplaces as well from there. 

Here are a few of the essential tasks you can run smoothly by integrating your Shopify account with a powerful eCommerce automation system.

Synchronize Orders and Inventory

Up-To-Date Stock availability is a top priority for all online sellers. Usually, the sellers manage the stock through excel sheets or manually updating the stock count in software at the end of the day. This is not a feasible option when your business grows bigger. 

Automation can help you scale-up so that you can cope with the demands of your growing business. Automated syncing of orders and inventory is possible with cloud-based software that updates the inventory as soon as a sale takes place in the online portal. 

This results in both saving time and effort needed to manage inventory manually. With a collaborative and automated software in action, you can avoid unnecessary back-and-forth run over multiple portals and dashboards, 

Inventory data gets regularly updated on all your marketplaces automatically. Just set the automation once and reap its benefits every time you get an order. you can also set automation for the following tasks.

  • Low-stock and out-of-stock alerts 
  • Set reorder levels for each product
  • Online and offline inventory sync
  • Multi-channel sales orders and inventory sync
  • Push stock quantity across channels
  • Automate order approvals

Re-order products automatically

The key to successful online business is to never go out-of-stock and an automated system helps you in maintaining your stock from time to time.

For a continuous and smooth flow of orders, you need to be in constant touch with your suppliers regarding your orders. Furthermore, you need to work with multiple suppliers as one to ensure timely deliveries. Most businesses ignore the fact that manually managing communication and approval of orders with multiple suppliers can be an arduous and chaotic task. 

Only by automating your orders through software, you can efficiently manage to place orders through multiple channels. You can make the process faster by prioritizing your supplier according to the type of SKU your place your dropshipping orders quickly.

For eg. 

  • Automatic purchase order creation as the inventory drops of a certain item
  • Auto email the PO to your supplier with specific SKUs, reorder quantity

You can set up an automation to place orders for the products as soon as it hits the preset re-order level. The system will automatically generate a purchase order and when prompted it will send the same email to the concerned supplier without any manual intervention. Isn’t that great!

Automate Shipping orders 

In order to complete the cycle of order fulfillment, it is crucial to ensure that you have all the required resources on board. Therefore, it goes without saying that you will need to integrate with multiple shipping partners to fulfill all your orders. 

Furthermore, automating your shipping management makes it effortless to make your product deliveries accurate and fast. You can set automation to ship your orders from a particular shipping service if the order is received from a particular location or use another service if the order is placed from a different country. 

Setting up such various automation enables you to ship your products without much manual intervention. For eg. set up a condition like, when the invoice is created and the payment status is paid, ship the order directly to the shipping provider previously selected such as FedEx, ShipBob, UPS, USPS, etc.

Also, you can reap the benefits of affordable shipping, since the software also has a shipping calculator which gets you the details of shipping charges. Here are some of the things you can automate for managing your shipments

  • Bulk import and export order and shipment details
  • Generate and print batch orders label
  • Print shipping manifests
  • Generate order-wise picking and packing list
  • Create and print packing slips
  • Generate shipping labels automatically

Automate Product Listing across multi-channels

One of the biggest tasks for a seller selling products across multiple online portals is to create the product listing for each one individually. An automated product listing software eliminates this laborious task by pushing the product(s) listing from one portal to the other various portals. 

You can save nearly 50% of your time in uploading the products including their descriptions, images, and pricing by automating the process, while also maintaining uniformity across all your sales channels.  

  • Customize templates as per sales channel requirements
  • Multi-variation listing
  • Push listing
  • Bulk product listing
  • Data mapping
  • Import & export listing data/catalogues

Manage returns efficiently

By now we all that returns are an inevitable part of doing online business. No matter how hard we try, returns are bound to happen and when that does happen we need to be prepared for it well in advance. 


Image courtesy byInvesPCRO

As the statistics show, returns and returns policy determine whether the shoppers will buy something from the online portal or not. In such a scenario, don’t you think it will be a great help if the returns can be managed automatically without much effort. 

Automation helps in managing the returns efficiently in the following ways:

  • Speed up the cash recovery cycle with quicker and more efficient returns approval, pickup and transportation processes
  • You can create, confirm or cancel returns from a unified platform
  • Assign the desired return warehouse
  • Create and download a custom returns label
  • Sync tracking with a shipping partner
  • Automated notifications upon status change
  • Automated refund processing

Conclusion

Apart from the above mentioned, there are several other important tasks that can be automated using a robust eCommerce automation software. You might want to explore more possibilities by trying it out. Meanwhile, hoping that the above points help you to at least get started with automation on your Shopify account for better managing your online business.  

This is a guest contribution from Krishna Jani. As a Sr. Content Writer at Orderhive, Krishna helps online vendors to learn about the latest technological advancements in managing inventory, warehouse, orders, shipping and order fulfillment. Her articles give meaningful insight into how to leverage these new technologies to their advantage and optimize overall eCommerce operations.


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