Ecommerce Automation: 5 Ways to Increase Your Sales Speed and Streamline Your Marketing Workflow

Alison Groves
Alison Groves / November 3, 2015

Zaps for Ecommerce

The holidays are coming. And if you sell anything online, you know that the "most wonderful" time of the year can be the most stressful, too. Gift-giving season translates to long hours for you and your team, and fewer hours with family and friends.

Adding automation to your ecommerce strategy can help you spend less time fulfilling orders, and more time with the people you love. Tedious tasks like keeping up with new customers, sending emails, and cataloging orders can be handled in the background so you can get back to the important stuff.

Here are five Zaps that our customers use to stay on top of their ecommerce efforts, cut out time-consuming tasks, and make more sales. Consider them an early gift, from our community to you.

P.S. Return the love in the comments: How do you use automation to simplify ecommerce?


Add New Customers to Your Email List

"Zapier has enabled us to do this in a completely automated way, so we can focus on our business rather than manual additions of data on a daily basis."

When someone purchases your product, they're giving you a digital high-five. They believe in what you're doing, and they want to be a part of it in the future. Is there anyone better to add to your email marketing lists?

But adding new customers to your email lists one-by-one is the definition of tedious. And in the hustle and bustle of the season, do you want to take the time to sit down and do it? This is the part where you shake your head "no."

Instead, let a Zap do the work for you. That's how men's clothing company Mizzen+Main built relationships with their customers, without wasting a minute on copy/paste.

"Mizzen+Main is constantly adding new fans," says CEO and founder Kevin Lavelle. "We think it is imperative to stay in communication with them as often and efficiently as possible. In order to do that we needed to find a solution that integrated with Shopify, our ecommerce platform."

Using Zapier as the glue, Mizzen+Main constructed an email-based system for staying in touch with their biggest fans.

"We wanted to be able to welcome our new customers via email to thank them for subscribing to our mailing list. We also needed to communicate with them anytime they pre-ordered a specific product, in order to ensure they received notice on delivery times," Lavelle says. "Zapier has enabled us to do this in a completely automated way, so we can focus on our business rather than manual additions of data on a daily basis. It has made our operations and customer service far more efficient!"

Create New Customer Records in Your CRM

Your work isn't done when someone makes their first purchase. If you want to make repeat sales, you need to create a connection between you and your customer.

A CRM app can help you track each person's purchases, contact information, and ineractions with your brand. It allows you to take customer relationships to the next level.

Right now you might be creating contact records by hand, adding a lot of extra work to your day for no good reason. Zapier is connected to more than 30 CRMs, meaning chances are you can cut this tedious job out of your day once and for all.

Turn Orders Into Tasks

"This is a flawless system and gives our team all the order details in each task on Asana in no time."

You made a sale—great! But now the real work starts: fulfilling and shipping everything to your customer. If you streamline that process by using a task management app, that means manually creating a task for every order, copy-and-pasting the order details into your to-do app, and moving it through your fulfillment process.

Unless you're using Zapier. A Zap can automatically add new orders, and any relevant details, to your favorite task manager. That means you can focus on keeping your customer happy.

Zeke Murphy uses Magento to host his online eco store, Sustainable. And thanks to a Zap, he can automatically create to-dos in his team's task management app, Asana, based on the details in an order from Magento.

"This is a flawless system and gives our team all the order details in each task on Asana in no time," he says. "Orders can be tracked, updated and commented on in Asana seamlessly. We really look forward to exploring Zapier further to give us more functionality and automation in our business processes."

Send Personal Emails to New Customers

Many ecommerce platforms allow you to send some sort of email—like an invoice or a confirmation—to anyone who purchases a product. But if you really want to build a relationship, you should send welcome and thank you emails, too. Even better if that message comes from your personal email address, whether that's via Gmail, Outlook, or another service.

Connect on a more intimate level with those new customers by automating an email that comes directly from you. It's an easy way to welcome people, to gain feedback, and begin to build an important relationship with that customer. Saying a simple and personal thank you has never been easier with just one automation.

Back Up Sales to Spreadsheets or Databases

"A manual process would be error-prone and eat up substantial staff time—a non-starter for a small business like ours."

The very essence of ecommerce is knowing exactly what you have sold, how, and when. Unfortunately, that can take the form of a messy, exported spreadsheet full of merged data. That's a recipe for human error.

One of the simplest automations you can set up is a Zap that sends every new sale to a spreadsheet or database. Something like Google Sheets or Smartsheet can easily catalog each new sale, and will always keep a running account of everything that's been purchased from your store.

At Raaka Chocolate, Matt Keesan helps run a limited-edition chocolate subscription program called First Nibs. He uses Zapier to track every order in a spreadsheet.

"Every month, our head chocolate maker creates two brand new flavors and mails them to our subscribers," he says. "When someone orders a gift plan through our Shopify site, we need it recorded in our master spreadsheet for both shipping and business intelligence. Zapier made it totally trivial to drop every new Shopify order into Google Sheets. A manual process would be error-prone and eat up substantial staff time—a non-starter for a small business like ours."

Ryan Detwiller, Senior Designer from Open Mesh had a specific problem he needed to solve with a sales promotion, and turned to a Zap to handle the heavy lifting.

"We first used a Magento to Google Sheets Zap when we needed a way to track orders related to a buy two, get one free promo we were running," he says. "We set up Zapier to send any orders with that specific promo code into a Google Sheet, so at the end of the campaign period we had a report with the details of every customer and order ready to go. The team could check the Google Sheet at any time to see how successful our campaign was.

"From there, we had to set up a customer with custom pricing, but only on a certain number of units. Every time that customer places an order, Zapier tracks it in Google Sheets and sends us an email so we can keep an eye on it."


New Zapier Apps, Triggers and Actions

New Zapier apps, triggers, and actions

During October, we welcomed 18 new apps to Zapier, including tools for team chat, email marketing, and ecommerce. We also made notable updates to our integrations for ActiveCampaign, YouTube, Promoter.io, and Campaign Monitor.

HubSpot CRM

HubSpot CRM untangles the process of staying in touch with your customers. It helps you create a central database of your contacts and track your conversations with them. And when you connect it to Zapier, you can automatically add contacts to your database from 500 other apps.

See our HubSpot CRM integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Azendoo

Keeping the lines of communication open is a crucial part of collaboration. Azendoo brings together everything you might need to collaborate with your team in one place: chat, task management, document sharing, and immediate access to teammates who are working and available when you have questions.

See our Azendoo integration for available Triggers and Actions.

MediaSilo

Organizing and sharing video assets is a headache-inducing task that can leave files strewn across different devices. MediaSilo is your relief. It's a video-management platform that works with your existing workflows. Their suite of tools makes it easy to search, access, and share your video assets, so your team can work in harmony.

See our MediaSilo integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Ecwid

Small business owners generally have tiny margins and even less time; they can't put in the effort to set up a complex online storefront. Enter Ecwid, which offers a simple solution for anyone to add an online store to their website, social media sites, or marketplaces. Within a few minutes, you can have your storefront up-and-running without help from an expensive web developer.

See our Ecwid integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Scoop.it

Discovering and curating content to share with your audience and community can be a time-consuming task. Scoop.it can give you an edge by delivering quality content that's relevant to your audience based on the keywords you choose. When you find something you like, you can share it with a few clicks.

See our Scoop.it integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Ryver

As the workplace changes rapidly, our team may be spread out across different offices and time zones, making communication and context extremely important. Ryver aims to bring all of your team communication under one roof with team chat, file sharing, and search to find any conversation with teammates you may need to reference or catch up on.

See our Ryver integration for available Triggers and Actions.

SimplyBook

If you run a business that requires appointments and bookings, you might find it difficult to keep up with them. SimplyBook helps you make bookings, both on the web or mobile. It can be used anytime by your customers, and will even send them an email or SMS confirmation. Don't worry about keeping multiple calendars or stress if they up to date, SimplyBook will handle that for you.

See our SimplyBook integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Direct Mail

Many of us know that email marketing is one of the best ways to communicate with customers. When you acquire a new list subscriber, you've really got their attention. Direct Mail helps you create, send, and track all of those email campaigns. It also gives you access to tools like mailing list sign-up forms, autoresponders, and more, while working both offline and on.

See our Direct Mail integration for available Triggers and Actions.

AnyMeeting

Virtual meetings, seminars, training sessions are a must with today's global workforce. AnyMeeting brings a complete online meeting and webinar platform to everyone, putting the power to host video chats for up to 1,000 participants in your hands. Anyone can share their screen, distribute files files, record sessions, and easily interact with participants.

See our AnyMeeting integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Boingnet

When dealing with marketing, setting up landing pages, crafting email messages, and microsites for specialized projects means there are a lot of moving parts. Boingnet can help bring all of that together in one marketing automation platform. Create easy landing pages and microsites that are mobile friendly, drip email marketing campaigns with lead nurturing, and analytics and reporting to tie everything together for you.

See our Boingnet integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Pusher

In the mobile-first world, your customers expect up-to-date information to land on their phones at any second. Pusher has a platform that delivers real-time messages to any app you're building, so you can move information around rapidly as your users have come to expect.

See our Pusher integration for available Actions.

Biztera

The approval process: a very easy place to make mistakes or authorize a spend that you shouldn't have. Biztera, gives you the power to set up teams and organizations to work together on approvals. It handles attachments, links, and comments, so you never need to worry about missing crucial information again.

See our Biztera integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Act! Essentials

Are you in need of a simple way of keeping up with all of your contacts? Act! Essentials provides an easy platform for tracking you contacts and customer conversations. You can also create email marketing messages right inside Act! Essentials, and build lists of your most engaged contacts so you'll always know who you should follow up with next.

See our Act! Essentials integration for available Triggers and Actions.

Fyrebox

Quizzes are an engaging way to interact with your audience. Whether your goal is to teach, capture leads, or do market research, Fyrebox gives you the power to create custom quizes. They're interactive, easy-to-use, and allow you to take user engagement on your website to the next level.

See our Fyrebox integration for available Triggers.

Unisender

Unisender helps you communicate with your customers, wherever they are. Not only can you via email and SMS, but you can also receive statistics and reports on just how well your campaigns are performing.

See our Unisender integration for available Triggers and Actions.

SparkPost

Hit "send" on an email, and move on, right? We don't normally think about whether or not it is going to make it to it's destination, we just assume it will. But when do that thousands, or even millions of times a day, you'll need something reliable. SparkPost is a developer-friendly email delivery service, which allows you to scale your email platform with your company. Don't worry about the number of emails you need to send, SparkPost can put your mind at ease.

See our SparkPost integration for available Actions.

Tribecube

Teamwork begins and ends with communication. And Tribecube makes that part easy: it brings your team together online to collaborate through text conversations, shared files, and video meetings, all packaged in an easy-to-use platform.

See our Tribecube integration for available Actions.

QuickFile

As a small business owner, you are the marketing, sales, and HR departments. And when you need to put on your accounting hat, QuickFile is here to help. It's a simple platform for managing custom invoices, where you can see when clients view them and connect them to some of the most popular payment systems in the world.

See our QuickFile integration for available Triggers and Actions.

App Updates

New Trigger for YouTube

New Zapier trigger for YouTube

Many content creators have started YouTube channels to showcase their work, but, it can be difficult to keep up with all of the things you love. You'll either need to remember to look for new videos, or wait to be alerted via social media. Using the latest Zapier Trigger for YouTube, you can keep up with any new video for channels.

See our YouTube integration for all available Triggers and Actions.

Updated Trigger and Actions for Campaign Monitor

Updated Zapier trigger and actions for Campaign Monitor

Campaign Monitor recently added transactional email capabilities to their email marketing platform, and now you can kick off those emails with Zapier. Check out the new Trigger for bounced transactional messages, and new Actions to send transactional email or update a subscriber on a list.

See our Campaign Monitor integration for all available Triggers and Actions.

New Action for Promoter.io

New Zapier action for Promoter.io

Promoter.io enhanced their Zapier integration, and you now have the ability to automatically unsubscribe contacts from a list. With this, you can keep the contacts in your NPS tool in line with lists in other apps like your CRM, email marketing platforms, or even from spreadsheets.

See our Promoter.io integration for all available Triggers and Actions.

New Action for ActiveCampaign

New Zapier action for Active Campaign

ActiveCampaign's new Action adds contacts to a specific automation within your account. When you have an automation set up, this Action send contacts to it automatically from forms, ecommerce platforms, or event management apps.

See our Active Campaign integration for all available Triggers and Actions.


A Look Inside Zapier

Adam, Paolo, Eileen and Vicky

Zapier is growing by leaps and bounds, adding three new people to the team this month. Eileen Ruberto and Adam Kaplan join the product team, and Paolo Papa and Vicky come to the support team, giving us almost 24 hour support. We are excited to have them on board as they help us make Zapier even better for everyone.

Want to join the new three and the rest of the remote team at Zapier? We're hiring!


Go back in time! Read our September edition of the Zapier Monthly: "Five Simple Ways to Improve Team Collaboration".

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