10 Things You Need to Automate in Your Business Right Now

Business

TGR Staff | Photo by Adeolu Eletu - 09/22/2022

You have a lot on your plate running a business, and you know that time is money. After all, who will do all the hard work when you have so many behind-the-scenes jobs to take care of? Luckily, you need plenty of things to automate to save time and energy, whether you are running your business alone, have a few staff members, or have multiple locations and hundreds of employees.

But where do you begin? Well, if you're ready to take the next step in the growth of your business, then it's time to start automating. After all, with so many time-consuming processes weighing you down, it's not just about staying afloat; it's about swimming as fast and efficiently as possible. Here are 10 ways to automate your business so that every cog within its workings is fully optimized.


Marketing Emails


Automated marketing emails are a great way to regularly stay in touch with your customers. This is especially useful for services-based businesses where maintaining consistent communication is vital for long-term success. Whether you choose to send weekly, monthly, or quarterly newsletters or even offer an email course, setting up automated emails will save you time and energy, allowing you to focus on other parts of your business. For best results, ensure you have a clear call to action with every email and set them up for regular intervals, new launches, promotions, or even abandoned carts to support sales pushes.


Live Chat for Customer Queries


Live chat software is a great way to reduce the time it takes to respond to customer queries. It's also great to build customer relationships and improve customer retention. If you're looking to automate a portion of your support process and get back some of your precious time, then a live chat function on your website is a great place to start. Once you have the software installed, there are plenty of ways to customize and personalize it to best suit your brand and customers' needs. You can also automate your live chat function, so your team is not bombarded with unnecessary communication. For example, you can automate replies and answers to common queries by having customers type in their issues. Anything else can then be directed to a live agent, be it a member of your team or a third-party company handling all live chat conversations. Many live chat services for business purposes offer various options to support your business how you need them.


Social Media


Creating a social strategy is incredibly important for businesses. In this day and age, you need to have a visible presence on as many of the significant platforms as possible that your audience can be found on. For example, Gen Z is mostly on TikTok or Instagram, and Millenials are drawn to Twitter or Instagram. At the same time, Facebook has a large Boomer audience, and LinkedIn is strictly for professional networking posts only. Still, with so many platforms to actively monitor, it can be time-consuming to stay on top of it all.


Thankfully, there are a few ways you can automate social media, cutting down on the time and energy you need to invest. Curate your feed to save time and energy. 


With so many posts to create and manage, it can be overwhelming to create every social media post by hand. Luckily, you can use tools like Sprout Social, Hootsuite, or Buffer to help you curate and manage your feed. This way, you can spend less time creating and managing each post and more time creating content and engaging with your audience. A/B tests your posts to discover what works for your audience. A/B testing is a great way to discover what posts work best and which ones should be cut. You can find the correct times to post from here, the type of posts your followers want to see, and what kind of engagement you get.


Data Analysis


Depending on the size and structure of your business, data analysis may happen regularly, or it may only be conducted when needed. Many business owners will gather the required data, then transfer it manually to a different program to analyze. This can take a lot of time and can quickly become disorganized. To save yourself time and energy, automate data analysis by gathering the data once and then transferring it to your preferred program for your team to analyze. This way, you can spend less time gathering data from various sources and more time analyzing the results.


Lead Generation


Depending on your business type, you may or may not need to generate leads actively. If you do, you should definitely consider ways to automate the process. You can schedule social media posts that direct visitors to a landing page where they can sign up for your newsletter or request more information about your product or service. This way, you don't have to spend time actively searching for leads and manually adding them to a list. You can also set up automated emails as soon as someone signs up for your newsletter. This is a great way to ensure that you stay in touch with your new customers and have a clear call to action.


Repetitive Tasks


Any time you find yourself doing the same thing repeatedly, it's a good indication that you can automate the process. Even if it's something small, like scheduling social media posts, you can save a lot of time by doing it once and then letting the software run on autopilot. There are a lot of apps and software available that can help you automate repetitive tasks. Some examples include Zapier, IFTTT, and Process Street. You can also create your own automated tools using a tool like Trello. Once you have everything set up, your new tools will make the repetitive tasks much easier and more efficient.


Sales Funnels and Processes


Depending on your business type, you may or may not have sales funnels and processes in place. You should consider automating the process if you don't have any sales funnels or strategies. This will allow you to create a repeatable and scalable sales process, which will help your business grow exponentially. Plenty of apps and software available can help you automate your sales process and create funnels. Some examples include Click Funnels, Leadpages, and Shopify. You can also create your own automated tools using a tool like Trello. Once you have everything set up, selling and growing your business will be much easier.


Processes you can automate can include;


  • Abandoned cart emails

  • Similar products or services

  • Requests for more information

  • Special offer alerts



Internal Communications


Depending on the size of your team, you may have a dedicated employee communication platform, or you may rely on email. If you're using email, you're missing out on many great features that can save you time and energy. You can use an employee communication platform to schedule meetings, send important information, and keep track of everything that's going on in your company. This is a great way to save time and stay organized. 


Using tools such as Asana, Slack, and Microsoft Teams can enable you to reduce the time spent communicating tasks and delegating work to all employees and provide a much more effective way to communicate at once, ensuring nothing gets lost, and everyone is on the same page. These tools also reduce the need for copious meetings and excessive emails as you reach everyone at once, and any feedback and comments can be left in the same place.


Accounting and Expenses


If you're crunching numbers by hand and entering them into spreadsheets, you're taking up a lot of your time and putting yourself at risk for mistakes and errors. If you automate some of your accounting and expense tracking processes, you can save time and ensure that your numbers are 100% accurate. Plenty of apps and software available can help you automate these processes. Some examples include Freshbooks, Xero, and Quickbooks. Alternatively, you can also create your own automated tools using a tool like Trello. Once you have everything set up, keeping track of your expenses and profits will be much easier.


Bill Payments


Setting up automated payments in your bank can help you ensure you do not miss any important bills and default on agreements with vendors and suppliers. Missing payments can increase your costs, damaging your credit score and leading to breakdowns in your supply chain. Avoid all of this by ensuring you have set up your payments with your bank to be paid on the due date where possible or right away as the situation dictates.


Conclusion


In order to grow your business, you need to put your best foot forward at all times. It can be easy to get caught up in the business's day-to-day operations and lose sight of the big picture. Automating certain aspects of the company can help you focus more on the larger picture and be better prepared for what's coming down the road.