How to fully automate your store functions
As a seller, you’ll know the beauty of e-commerce is that you can run your business – and sell your products – from anywhere, and to anyone, in the world. While that creates accessibility and flexibility, it doesn’t necessarily make business any easier.
Automating your store functions is the best way to streamline your e-commerce business, removing the manual busywork, so you can concentrate on more valuable tasks – the ones necessary to growing your business.
We’ve put together a list of top Shopify apps you can use to automate back-office functions, logistics, tracking and marketing.
Back office functions
- For accounting: A2X for Shopify
As your Shopify store grows, importing each order into your accounting system will not only clog up your system – you’ll also waste hours reconciling your bank account.
The accounting connector integrates with Xero or QuickBooks, automating that manual process. It summarises statements tied to each payout, ensuring penny-perfect reconciliation each month. A2X bridges the data gap, so you know you can rely on your bookkeeping to make future financial decisions.
Director of Goodsprings, Matthew, shared this review on Capterra: “It’s easy to use and mostly automatic. If you have any experience with accounting then you will have no problems using A2X, or if you are like me: your accountant will go through it with you in about 30 minutes. There are also plenty of tutorials online if you would prefer to do it that way, or just need a little reminder. I also have my Xero account connected to make things even easier.”
- For payments: Shopify Payments
Shopify Payments is the simplest way to accept payments online. It eliminates the hassle of setting up a third-party payment provider. You’re automatically set up to accept all major payment methods as soon as you create your Shopify store.
A note, Shopify Payments is only available in certain countries. If it’s unavailable in your country, look at Partial.ly Payment Plans – an app that provides the option for standard checkout or a payment plan.
- For label printing: Order Printer
Printing packing slips, invoices, labels or receipts is manageable…until your business grows. As the number of orders increase, printing will become your worst nightmare.
This app is free and easy to set up. Quickly print custom packing slips, invoices, labels, or receipts for all your orders, and print documents in bulk. Note: to customise templates, you – or your friendly web developer – will need experience with HTML and Liquid.
This is what e-commerce seller Pirate Nation Ltd had to say about the app: “The app is great but what is impressive is the support. I needed modification of the invoice to match specific requirements and the team were all over it and had it customised in no time. Very impressive. Well done!”
- For orders processing: TradeGecko
Your time is valuable and better spent focusing on your customers and products. TradeGecko lets you free up countless hours and manage your entire commerce and supply chain ecosystem from one central, integrated platform – from production through to fulfilment.
“TradeGecko is the best multichannel store and inventory management platform we’ve ever used. Makes managing multiple Shopify stores and third-party marketplaces very simple and straightforward. I would highly recommend this app,” says Nogu Studio.
This tracking app automatically integrates with hundreds of carriers across the globe, so your shoppers can see exactly where their package is, 24/7. Your customers can track their orders in real-time, view their order status on your store with or without an account, on your store using their order number and email, or get automatically emailed tracking links.
This app has great reviews on Shopify App Marketplace (4.7/5) including this one from Azure Health: “I would rate everything about this company, app, experience with a 5.0. The app does what we need, it’s responsive, it has a clean interface for our customers to check shipping status, it’s easily configurable…and it’s reliable.”
- For marketing recommendations: Kit
This is a great app for sellers who don’t have the time to learn or implement marketing strategies. Using product, visitor and customer data, Kit’s AI recommends the activities most likely to drive sales in your store.
It will help you:
- Create Facebook and Instagram ads that drive sales
- Create and promote discount codes as a sales and retention tactic
- Send personalised emails to generate repeat purchases
- Generate quick reports to provide insights on sales and marketing performance
CapCapers left this review on July 19, 2019: “The internet has become more refined and core to business. It’s also become complicated. It’s necessary to stay with cutting edge apps and techniques to be competitive. I’m confident KIT helps us be there – and they have a fantastic support staff.”
- For SEO: Plugin SEO
For any e-commerce store, optimising and growing your SEO rankings is an effective – and relatively inexpensive – marketing strategy. It can also be time-consuming to do well.
Plugin SEO offers a super-easy way to manage and optimise your SEO according to Google best practice, helping you to improve rankings and increase organic traffic.
Using its advanced templates, you’ll have help with the following:
- Meta Titles
- Meta Descriptions
- Advanced Structured Data
- 404 Broken Links
- Multilingual SEO
All That Glitters Fine Jewelry shared their experience: “I started using this app about a month ago and my SEO was not bad – but it needed help. When I began using this app, I was on page 6, second to last. In the month I have been using this app I have gone from page 6 to page 1.”
- For capturing emails: Privy
Privy’s free suite of conversion and email marketing tools, including exit-intent driven pop-ups and banners, help you grow and sync your email list, reduce cart abandonment and automate your email marketing.
With Privy, you can
- Build beautiful pop-ups that push people to join your mailing list with easy-to-use targeting and triggers
- Use targeted pop-ups and discounts on exit, to close sales before people go away. Use automated recovery emails to bring them back.
- Send newsletters, cart recovery, and order follow-up emails.
Mars and the Wolf says they’ve had great results from using the app over a year: “I’d highly recommend it.”
- For stock counting: Sold Stock
Encourage sales and increase revenue by creating scarcity and urgency with sold quantities and available stock on product pages. If something is in limited stock, customers are more likely to make a purchase – just in case they miss out. It also helps customers make better buying decisions because they can see product demand. This app will help you lower your risk of overselling – never good from a customer service prospective.
From The Face of Music: “I’ve been a systems engineer for 25 years and I can tell you the app works great. I asked for a couple of tweaks and their support team was swift, and everything works perfectly to my needs. I highly recommend this great app!”
- For creating social proof: FOMO
Display recent orders and product reviews on your product pages as your prospective customers browse your store, to increase conversions by creating FOMO aka ‘fear of missing out’.
This gem of an app will help you automate these tasks:
- Show live traffic, i.e. ‘50 other people are looking at this product right now’.
- Suggest similar products based on what your customer has been browsing with a direct link.
- Enable location-based or just-purchased messages, i.e. ‘10 people bought this in the last 24 hours’.
Here’s how FOMO has helped one e-commerce seller: “We definitely see the value in FOMO for both social proof and tracking analytics that show sales have resulted from this app. There are a lot of features that make this app stand out from its major competitor – pricing is better, the ease of use of the dashboard is better, and the code seems to have less of an impact on our page load times. FOMO has resulted in a fair number of successful purchase completions. But more important, in my opinion, than the sales is that it is a powerful motivator for visitors to our website when they see all of the sales happening.” Chaz E. (source: Capterra)
Now’s the time to automate
Automation is the key to allowing your business to reach its full potential. These apps won’t just automate everything – they’ll also free you up for more future-focused activities, such as new marketing and growth strategies, and way better customer service.
Now’s the time to automate work that is bogging you down, and streamline order tracking, marketing, logistics and back-office functions. That way you can focus on more valuable jobs that scale your business. Put your energy into developing a new product, expanding into other countries or collaborating with another business.