How to Automate (Almost) Everything on Your Website
Managing a business website can be a time-consuming endeavor. In order to grow and scale your business operations, you should be looking at ways of automating website management tasks.
Setting up automation tools will ensure that you are prepared to meet the changing demands of consumers, and will also give you more time to invest your overall business strategy.
Here is some advice on how to automate (almost) everything on your website to save yourself time and hassle.
Compliance & Security
There are loads of security and development tasks that help keep your website safe — and many of them can be at least part-automated.
Here are some of the tasks you can save time on:
- Automating privacy policies & terms and conditions using generators
- Automatic security and database updates
- Autosaving database backups
- Auto-syncing data from your site into your CRM or email database.
Install security plugins and apps from verifiable sources in order to help you fight comment spam and DoS attacks in a more efficient way. You should also set up extra hosting arrangements that automatically help keep your site up during a sudden spike in web traffic and server requests.
If you are selling products through your website, the process of converting currencies and paying the proper amount of tax for your sales is a crucial area to automate. You can find tools that will calculate sales tax per transaction and record the data for your books. Make sure you stay compliant and accurate by auto-generating your tax return data as you go.
However, you must also bear in mind that you will also need real-life advice on legalities and taxation from licensed professionals.
Building an email list of prospective clients and leads is often the #1 job of any business website.
Email marketing, despite the popularity of social media, is still an excellent medium for bringing in sales. In fact, email subscribers have been found to spend on average 138% more than customers who visit websites through alternative channels.
Make sure you are using tools that cleverly opt your visitors into your newsletter. Create automatic pop-ups, scroll bars, download buttons, even sponsored social media ads — everything you can to start a permission-based marketing funnel.
GetResponse is an industry leader in the list building space, and can help you create a wide range of ‘sticky’ features that keep users engaged:
Read more in this previous post on beefing up your newsletters with conversion-driving content. Use your email marketing as a means for upselling and linking to bundles of products on your site.
Meeting SEO Requirements
Any brand worth its salt will be adding new content to their website to boost their SEO potential. SEO plugins can help you create search-friendly content as you are uploading blog posts through your site’s CMS. Something like Yoast on WordPress can help you scale back the time when it comes to optimization — allowing you to quickly and efficiently update title tags and meta descriptions, and even create site-wide rules.
If you’re in the ecommerce space, you should consider investing in an online store builder that automatically optimizes your site as you add new product pages — updating your sitemap.XML files for every new item uploaded onto your site and auto-generating initial metadata.
Search engine optimization is a long, multi-disciplined process. It requires your creative input, as well as a checkbox list of enhancing requirements. Make sure you are investing your time in the former and automating in the latter.
Your reputation as a business owner can be enhanced with review automation tools.
A study from Deloitte and Touche found that businesses are 60% more profitable if they take a customer-centric and social proof approach to their sales — reviews are essential tools to help you sell your business.
Website customer feedback services provide business owners with an easy way to organize consumer comments, and they also prompt customers to leave reviews. You won’t have to dig around for emails and be for reviews — they will just automatically come in.
A tool like Yotpo uses AI in order to help you gather intelligent and compelling UGC (user generated content). This can be a great way for ecommerce brands particularly to supercharge their sales.
Customer review automation also simplifies the process of generating and sending customer post-purchase surveys. This is one of the best ways of getting honest opinions on where your services might be currently lacking.
Fulfilling Orders, Smarter
If you are sending anything out to customers, you need to look at investing in a comprehensive order management systems (OMS) that hooks up with your website. Together, these tools can manage inventory updates across all selling channels. Some can also connect with supplier warehouse management systems to make picking and packing tasks easier.
In meeting demands in peak seasonal shopping periods, order management automation can make a huge difference to your profit margins. It will also make your website management during the sales a lot more efficient, and ensure that product listings are 100% accurate. An out of stock product page or an unfulfilled order can lead to a really negative customer experience.
Social Media Management Tools
Social media marketing is a vital channel for bringing in sales, regardless of your business model. Getting your head around automating the processes will help you optimize your social funnel, and ensure that it’s working well in conjunction with the rest of your website.
Firstly, it’s a good idea to automatically pull in your social feeds to your website — it will instantly bring it a bit more to life, and give clients and customers more context about your business.
In order to keep your social media pipeline full, you will want to part-automate and schedule out your social media calendar.
Social media automation tools offer affordable price plans for small business owners. However, major brands like Buffer and Hootsuite also provide free plans you can access to help you schedule:
- Buffer will suggest the optimum time for posting within their post scheduling dashboard.
- Hootsuite will let you run three separate profiles on their free subscription plan.
Your website needs automated tools to help you keep up with the developing needs of your customers. There is a vast array of A.I assistance you can seek to save time, communicate efficiently with your suppliers, and enhance your online marketing presence. Make sure you are setting up the right web infrastructure well in advance of seasonal selling peaks. These preparations will help you reap the full benefits of automating your business.
Victoria Greene is a writer and branding expert. She runs a blog called Victoriaecommerce. Her site offers tips for new business owners looking for help with marketing and automation.