A big part of running an ecommerce business is finding ways to get a variety of apps, services, and people to work smoothly as a cohesive unit. As your company grows, the trickier this proposition becomes. There’s more of everything: data to analyze, employees to manage, information to share, invoices to track, leads to follow, and tasks to complete. Odds are, you have a slew of unique applications and systems in place to keep everything running smoothly.
That said, all of this takes time and resources. The more complex your workflows become, the more plugins and APIs you wind up needing to synchronize and coordinate.
It bears mentioning that we at SellerCloud take pride in our efforts to support clients with their automation needs. We routinely help customers build out custom digital features like workflow business rules and plugins. However, we have jumped at the opportunity to put more of that customization directly into the hands of our customers.
As part of our mission to help our clients grow, we have recently rolled out an invite-only integration with the automated productivity tool Zapier (pronounced zap-ee-er) to make all of the various elements of your business work together more seamlessly and creatively. This intuitive tool removes much of the complexity surrounding your business’s digital workflow without the need for programming expertise.
As a SellerCloud user, you already have the power of Zapier at your fingertips. Using our REST API, we have built a Zapier integration that is ready for you to take advantage of. Simply click this link and you are ready to start!
How Zapier Works
Zapier is an automation platform that connects an ever-growing list of over 1,500 apps. Users can create “Zaps” that quickly and easily synergize the functions of their favorite web-based tools.
The process relies upon a network of “Webhooks”- automated messages that push useful data from one application to another – to trigger entire sequences of time-saving actions.
For example, when an event happens in SellerCloud, it can trigger other applications to do things like record data, issue notifications, and even adjust inventory records. It also works in reverse: Zapier can be told to use events in other apps to trigger actions in SellerCloud.
Let’s take an e-commerce example; say someone places an order through a Google Form. Zapier can then instantly trigger the following actions:
- Creation of a new order in SellerCloud
- An appropriate note is placed on the order
- The customer’s contact information is automatically added to the appropriate fields in your email marketing app.
- An email receipt is created and sent to the customer.
- A notification is sent to your warehouse or 3PL provider to begin the physical order fulfillment.
- A SMS reminder is created for the customer and set to trigger whenever the status of the order changes.
- A customer appreciation email containing a survey is triggered to send once the status of the order changes to “delivered.”
This is just the tip of the iceberg. Zapier’s list of webhook integrations is both deep and versatile. As a result, there are countless ways that can streamline some of your most tedious workflows and help you to innovate powerful new ones.
A Little Creativity Goes a Long Way
As with all automated productivity tools, there is an inherent degree of trial and error. You will obviously need to test out your commands and conditional logic routines before relying upon them in your business’s workflow. Nevertheless, with a little imagination and tinkering, you may find ways to turn this initial time investment into massive time savings.
To make things simpler, Zapier has created their Paths tool as an intuitive way to create complex, powerful automations through long chains of rules and if-then conditions. Ordinarily, this could be quite an overwhelming process, but Zapier streamlines things with a series of pull-down menus that are pre-populated with the triggers, rules, Boolean terms, commands, and application functions required to compose the customized workflows you dream up – no complicated programming knowledge required! The end result is a series of paths that trigger different workflows depending upon if and how certain conditions are met.
Here are some examples of some Zapier “Zaps” you could create:
- A file is uploaded to queue a large, new job in SellerCloud. You can set automated status updates via email or a messaging platform like Slack to notify appropriate team members of the progress of the job as it is processed.
Taking things a step further, entire portions of the job may be automated. For instance, the actual queueing of the job itself could be initiated by a Zap.
- A customer is due to reorder from you, but has not yet done so. You can create a path to trigger when a customer has not ordered for a set period of time. One way to do this would be to create a Zap tied to first time a new order is placed. You can have Zapier Zap the customer’s information to Klaviyo so that this app is prepared to send future followup emails (Even though Sellercloud doesn’t have a native integration with Klaviyo, Zapier makes this option accessible.). After a stretch of customer inactivity, Zapier can trigger Klaviyo to generate and send a unique coupon code to the customer. If no order is placed within a few days, a Slack or Gmail message can be triggered to send to whomever is in charge of corporate outreach to schedule a follow-up call with the customer. If an order is placed, a Zap can add an additional row to a Google sheet to help you track the success rates of your Klaviyo campaigns.
- A customer responds to a follow-up survey. Not only can you populate survey responses into a Google sheet and extract contact information into a mailing list, but you can also set Zapier to trigger a series of tasks depending upon the nature of the responses. If positive, a thank you email can be sent with a discount offer and a link to post a public positive review. If negative, a customer service representative can automatically be notified and a follow-up call can be scheduled automatically.
Specific response values can further direct the notifications. For instance, if a customer complaint contains the word “shipping,” the complaint can be directed to your logistics manager. If a customer mentions an employee by name, the employee and/or the relevant supervisor can be automatically notified through Gmail or a Slack message.
- You have several social media channels, but you are not using them to effectively drive more business. You could use Zapier to trigger a promotional post on your social media channels for a specific product when you receive new inventory. Once the purchase order is marked as received in SellerCloud, the posts can go live to announce to your customers that you are ready to take orders.
Depending upon your business, there are likely any number of tasks that could be streamlined with Zapier. By integrating the versatility of SellerCloud’s ecommerce growth platform with Zapier’s intuitive automation tools, you can optimize your company’s workflows in a seemingly infinite array of new ways.
For more on our Zapier integration and other ways SellerCloud can increase the efficiency of your ecommerce business, contact us directly.