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How to Use Workflow Automation to Benefit Online Retail Businesses

Workflow Automation

A workflow implies all of the business activities from start to finish. An eCommerce company manages data to sell goods, increase customer loyalty, and succeed in SEO promotion. But that means a lot of manual input and task coordination by salespeople. Workflow automation removes this roadblock, and it streamlines repetitive tasks, reduces costs, and optimizes resources. What else does a business achieve with workflow automation?

Any employee, even the most experienced one, can make mistakes. But fatigue is not the case with automation. It improves speed and accuracy and doesn’t let data go missing. To provide an example, synchronization between a CRM and an eCommerce platform or when you integrate faxing in Salesforce is workflow automation. 

This article will discuss workflow automation and coordination in eСommerce and how online merchants can benefit from it.

5 Effective eCommerce Workflow Automation Examples

1. Inventory Control

You can’t thrive without a well-designed inventory workflow. Is it sensible to manually enter data for each purchase when you can leave it to specified tools? Integrate your eCommerce business and an inventory management system, such as:

  • ZOHO Inventory;
  • Quickbooks;
  • Cin 7;
  • among others.

It should be two-way sync, meaning:

  1. someone orders an item in your store;
  2. an inventory management system creates a sales order;
  3. the machine automatically updates the status of this item;
  4. the new stock quantity appears on your website.

Moreover, workflow automation and coordination in eСommerce simplifies the refund procedure and supports your marketing efforts. It will allow you to create incentives depending on your clients’ buying history.

2. Customer Onboarding

Suppose visitors leave their contact details on your website. What do they expect next? Such action indicates their interest in your company and willingness to take communication to the next level. Your next step should be sending them compelling welcome emails.

While the interest remains warm or even hot, such emails have an open rate of 91.43%. Compare it to regular promotional emails with an 18% open rate. Of course, mere subscription confirmation is not enough. Consider using marketing automation software to answer the following questions:

  • What is the customer’s path?
  • Which page draws their attention the most?

You can improve your open rate metric by addressing the reader by their first name and providing some value. For example, if the client buys something for the first time, include a discount code in your welcome email.

3. Collecting Feedback and Dealing with Negative Reviews

As the cost of attracting new customers grows, retaining existing clients becomes one of the top priorities. But first, you need to know their perceptions about your products.

How do you get this information? You won’t believe it: all you need to do is ask them. Or you can make your request more meaningful by suggesting some bonuses for leaving a review.

Customer feedback is effective like no other way for successful companies to detect their flaws. They show the big picture to take steps to improve them.

You can streamline feedback collection. As with onboarding, this entails the creation of automated emails. You can send follow-up emails after a sale at a specific time.

For example, you won’t ask for a review immediately after order confirmation, will you? Also, you won’t ask for the client’s opinion upon delivery, as they need some time to test the product. Automatic emails will wait as long as you need and demonstrate that you value your consumers’ comments.

Unprompted feedback represents negative comments in most cases. How do you deal with customers’ disappointment? An unfavorable review requires a quick response. Automated workflow management guarantees that all issues are in the appropriate department.

Let’s take a five-star rating as an example. An electronic set-up system detects all reviews with two stars or less. And your customer support staff receives them automatically.

4. eCommerce Automation and Social Media

What’s one of the best eCommerce marketing channels? This section dwells on social media. And there are numerous social media platforms for you to choose from. But their abundance is what it’s all about. Where should you direct your efforts? What are the ways to market on each of them?

That’s where marketing automation platforms come into play. These tools allow you to simultaneously curate, post, and track your social media engagement across many platforms. It will make you more engaged and consistent on social networking.

Machine learning-based solutions can assist you in attracting continuous social network traffic.  AI technology powers tools like Sprout Social and HootSuite. The best part is that AI assesses your content and identifies the most successful posts to see what works best.

You can schedule your posts to publish after business hours or on weekends. So the target audience sees them at the right time.

5. Identifying Customers

A customer journey consists of stages. These stages define your future action towards a particular customer. However, specifying and targeting clients manually may lead to mistakes. So you can eliminate human error with automated solutions, such as Mautic or ActiveCampaign, in various tasks:

  • creating different stages;
  • dividing leads according to their place in the sales funnel;
  • assigning tags to clients.

Let’s take a look at the example of subscribing to a newsletter. As soon as a person leaves their address, you can identify them as a “New Subscriber.” You can create content particularly for “New Subscriber” customers and send it to this segment.

Wrapping Up

Workflow automation and coordination in eСommerce usually entail replacing a human with a computer. But we don’t mean the complete replacement of people with machines and their dismissal. Instead, eCommerce automation does the heavy lifting while employees can focus on analytical tasks.

Moreover, duties become more complex over time. So, firms need to implement a customizable workflow automation engine to increase their productivity in email automation, lead nurturing, and inventory management.

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