Managing an online store can be very time-consuming. As an entrepreneur, you know that any business’s development takes time. But what if there was a way to do some activities Automatically? Taking a moment to set up to gain time later?
E-Commerce Automation is the answer to your needs. Mainly when it involves such sensitive processes as orders and customer support, this article will introduce 8 ways to automate WooCommerce, leading to increased sales for your online store.
What is eCommerce Automation?
E-Commerce Automation is using software to automate as many e-commerce-related tasks as possible. You can use automation, for example, to send emails and notifications in-house and to customers or to create new support tickets at a helpdesk automatically.
However, although e-commerce automation can reduce the time spent on tasks, it certainly does not eliminate the need for human labor. Instead, automation allows you to effectively use your free time to better communicate with your customers, think creatively, and have a bird’s eye view of the things most important to your business operations.
Why do you need to Automate WooCommerce?
Automation in e-commerce can be introduced whether you are working solo or head a large team. When you work in this way, you can scale your operations better and faster and grow your business systematically.
With e-commerce automation, you can do many things, for example:
- Keep in touch with your customers;
- Save time for your team by cutting down on repetitive tasks;
- Deliver relevant content to the right users’ thanks to customer segmentation;
- Perform A/B testing for both communications and pricing policies;
- Create personalized communications by having access to demographic and behavioral data;
- Develop remarketing campaigns for abandoned shopping carts;
- Recognize new target groups or cross- and up-sell opportunities;
- Perform analysis of the results and effectiveness of ongoing activities in both performance, content, and landing page areas;
- Make users and customers always feel special, taken care of, and appreciated.
Top 8 Ways to Automate WooCommerce for More Sales
So far, we know what e-commerce automation is and how it can help your WooCommerce online store to increase sales. In the following, we will talk about 6 ways you can automate WooCommerce and increase sales.
1. Automate WooCommerce and Social Networks
To automate WooCommerce and social media, you should download and install Facebook for WooCommerce plugin, which will connect your WooCommerce with Facebook and Instagram.
Using this plugin, you can connect WooCommerce and automatically create the Facebook catalog on your Facebook page. The catalog, also known as the Facebook Store, will allow you to sell the same products on your website through your Facebook page.
- Automated creation of the Facebook catalog with the WooCommerce products.
- Automatic installation of the Facebook pixel, including e-commerce events (example of events: product displayed, product added to cart, checkout initiated, payment initiated, purchases, etc.).
- Automatically update products in the Facebook store (catalog) whenever you modify something in your WooCommerce store.
With this plugin, you can synchronize:
- Prices (regular and on sale).
- Images (main and gallery).
- Product Description (long or short).
- Simple or variable products and attributes.
- Automatically resync at a time of your choice (daily resync).
- Manual resync of the entire Facebook store.
Just like in the previous case, we can link our WooCommerce online store with Instagram Shopping so we can tag products and attract buyers from this social network.
Automatic synchronization: Instagram utilizes the same catalog of the Facebook page to collect product data (prices, descriptions, images, etc.), which means that it will be automatically synchronized every time we make a change in our WooCommerce.
🔶 Dynamic Remarketing Ads
Dynamic remarketing is the ads that display the same product we were interested in but abandoned the purchase, for example.
Through social media ads, we can configure Facebook or Instagram Ads to dynamically re-display the same product to the same user.
Here we can show remarketing ads on Facebook, Instagram, Third-party partner networks, and other companies Facebook may acquire. To do this, you must create the product catalog described in the previous section.
2. Automate WooCommerce Promotions and Discounts
One great way to boost your sales seasonally (low season) or to leverage key holidays (Christmas, Boxing Day, Cyber Monday, Black Friday) is to create marketing campaigns with promotions and discounts.
🔸WooCommerce Native Discounted Pricing
A native feature in WooCommerce enables you to work with both regular and sale pricing. Few people know or use the option to schedule the dates (from… until) during which a particular product will remain on sale.
In the following, we will discuss some plugins that solve this disadvantage by expanding the native function and giving new automated marketing features to your WooCommerce website.
Finale XL Plugin
The Finale XL plugin lets you greatly enhance your WooCommerce store, as you can add:
- Dates: dates “from / to” with intervals. Duration by hours. Deactivate and automatically reactivate campaigns.
- Web Features: Countdown on each product on promotion, sticky header with countdown generating a sense of urgency. Stock bar of products on sale to create a sense of scarcity.
- Inventory management for promotional products
YITH WooCommerce Wishlist
Using the YITH WooCommerce Wishlist plugin lets your users create wishlists with the products on your online store and share them with friends and family. In doing so, you will be able to increase the average purchase value and thus your online store’s sales.
On top of that, letting your users add products to their wishlist will give you some insight over what are your most popular products and your customer’s interests.
3. Automatically Increase the Average Order Value
As the official Netflix technology blog says, 75% of what people watch on Netflix is a result of some automatic recommendation from their powerful personalization algorithm.
Furthermore, when we find out that 70% of Amazon’s “home page” is focused on personalized recommendations, it is safe to assume that using automated recommendations in WooCommerce will boost our online store’s sales.
In the following, we will discuss ways to increase the average order value in online shops, focusing on how to automate WooCommerce to increase average purchase value. To do this, we will need a recommendation plugin.
🔸WooCommerce Recommendation Engine
Using the WooCommerce Recommendation Engine plugin, you can do precisely that and automatically display:
- Products that are related to the ones currently viewed by other users in the past.
- Related products which other users purchased over time from your online store (not necessarily bought together at the same time).
- Products related to those other users bought together in the past (bought in the same purchase order, in a specific purchase).
🔸Beeketing personalized recommendation
This WooCommerce plugin provides a similar solution through its artificial intelligence algorithm, which analyzes the data and user behavior of an e-commerce website to automatically suggest:
- Products are purchased together frequently.
- Products most frequently purchased in the store.
- Recommended products according to the contents of the cart.
- Automatic popup with up-sell recommendations.
A further advantage of the Beeketing plugin is that it enables the manual selection of related products and not only the automatic one.
4. Automated Customer Service Using Chatbots
Nowadays, perfect customer service is a must for any online store that wants to retain customers and increase sales. According to a study by the consulting firm Gartner, in 2020, 25% of customer service was performed by virtual assistants or chatbots.
We all know the importance of having perfect customer service in an online store with the help of chatbots and how it can boost sales. To better help you with this, below, we will discuss how to automate customer service by using chatbots within our WooCommerce website.
With this plugin, you can deploy a chatbot on any WooCommerce website. The unique feature is that we can connect WooCommerce products to be used directly as part of the answers that the bot sends back to the user.
This plugin lets us have a virtual assistant in our online shop and allows us to connect WooCommerce to use the products as part of the answers it provides.
- With the free version of this plugin, you will have a functional chatbot for small multi-language online stores.
- The paid version raises the bar and provides us with natural language processing using Google Dialog Flow.
🔶 Alternative: ManyChat
An alternative for using chatbots in a WooCommerce online store would be to connect ManyChat with WooCommerce so that they can work together.
This alternative is perfect if you are already working with the well-known ManyChat and do not wish to change your chatbot service.
By connecting both services through Zapier, you can have ManyChat or WooCommerce triggers and ManyChat actions.
5. Automate Upselling and Cross-Selling with Artificial Intelligence
Upselling and cross-selling are similar to what we discussed in the increase average order value section. In this case, we do the upselling by showing recommendations at checkout or on the cart page.
Cross-selling is also done on the checkout or cart page, and on this occasion, we offer the possibility of buying the same product with other products at a better price to the customer.
Both these techniques are well known, but they generally remain a bit on the back burner because you must make recommendations or create the product bundles manually. However, upsells and cross-sells can now be automated thanks to artificial intelligence.
🔸Beeketing for Up-Selling and Cross-Selling
As mentioned earlier in the ‘increase average purchase value’ section, Beeketing is a perfect e-commerce platform for WooCommerce. It offers many features, including upselling and cross-selling with the help of artificial intelligence.
What makes Beeketing great is that the system will do everything from creating related product groups to offering them to customers on its own, and you will not have to do a thing.
🔸YITH WooCommerce Frequently Bought Together
Another great option to automate WooCommerce to increase sales through upselling and cross-sell is the YITH WooCommerce Frequently Bought Together. It works by adding a section to your online store which shows usually bought together products to the customer. This plugin can also show related products to the customers to help you generate more sales.
For example, when a customer wants to buy a PlayStation 5 console, the plugin will show PS5 games and accessories to them. All these make YITH WooCommerce Frequently Bought Together a great plugin to automate WooCommerce when it comes to upselling and cross-selling.
6. Automatically Recover Lost Sales
We have already discussed how to do remarketing ads on Facebook and Instagram. Now let’s talk about abandoned carts in e-commerce.
According to a study by Statista, 75.6% of users abandon their purchase; therefore, you should focus your WooCommerce marketing on recovering those lost sales.
Here we’ll look at how to recover those potential sales over email and through popups on the website.
🔸Abandoned carts recovery via email
Suppose a user visiting our online store adds a product to the cart and ends up with an unfinished purchase. In that case, we can automate an abandoned cart email sending.
What does it do? It sends an email notification to users who started the checkout process but abandoned it.
We must remember that for our system (internal or external) to email the user; they must be registered or at least have entered their email address on the checkout page before leaving the purchase process.
There are at least two ways to automate the sending of abandoned cart emails:
Through WordPress/WooCommerce (internal)
Several plugins are available, free and paid, from basic to more complex. For example, you can use Abandoned Cart Lite for WooCommerce (freemium) or WooCommerce Follow-Ups (premium) plugins.
Through a third-party service (external)
We will use Mailchimp for WooCommerce for this example since it is highly recognized among WordPress users. However, we could use almost any other external service with plugins or automation with Zapier.
🔸Abandoned cart recovery with popups at checkout
In addition to the previous example, we can display popups if our potential customer takes a long time to complete the purchase. To do this, we can use the OptinMonster.
You should try to convince the user by showing an offer, discount, or message that creates a sense of urgency or scarcity to encourage them to decide to buy at that moment and not later on.
One setup we could use in the OptinMonster plugin is as follows:
- If the user is on the page that contains /checkout/ in the URL,
- And he/she spends more than 120 seconds (2 minutes) on that page,
- And an attempt to exit that page is detected
Then, show the popup with the discount.
7. Automating recurring payments in WooCommerce
Suppose you sell a service, product, or digital product with recurring payment or have a membership site built with WooCommerce. In that case, you can automate the recurring payment very simply.
🔶 WooCommerce Subscriptions
This is the most recommended plugin as it has the advantage of being well-updated with each WooCommerce update and having good support.
WooCommerce Subscriptions allow recurring payments through Stripe, PayPal, Amazon Pay, Authorize.net, and many other payment gateways.
- Features automatic recalculation support for unsuccessful subscription payments, ensuring you don’t miss out on revenue
- Enable your subscribers to self-manage their subscription, which includes upgrades and downgrades with no need to wait for your help
- Availability of different billing schedules to satisfy your store’s needs
- Integrated renewal notifications and automatic emails will inform both you and your customers – whenever subscription payments are processed, ensuring zero surprises
8. Automate customer loyalty and tracking with WooCommerce
In this section, we will discuss some ideas for building customer loyalty and following up with your customers.
We can use WooCommerce plugins (internal) or third-party services (external) to connect and automate our WooCommerce store, especially regarding CRMs.
🔶 Automate with WooCommerce Follow-Ups
The WooCommerce Follow-Ups plugin lets you perform many of the necessary tasks to engage and retain your customers, for example:
- Send an automated welcome email.
- Send an automatic email upon the first purchase.
- Automatically send an email to ask how the purchase experience has been (follow-up).
- Send automated promotional emails to customers who have not purchased again.
- Send promotional emails according to customers’ purchase history.
In the plugin, there are several triggers that indicate in what situation the system should send a certain email to the user. You can also combine the triggers with other conditions or filters, for example, by product, category, or type of product.
🔶 Automatically ask for reviews in exchange for discount coupons
It is well known that users tend to leave negative comments most of the time. For this reason, we must encourage them to leave positive comments if our product has fulfilled their expectations.
A simple way is to automatically offer WooCommerce discount coupons in exchange for a review for the time the customer spent writing the review. YITH WooCommerce Reviews for Discounts is a good plugin for automatically asking for customer reviews.
Using this plugin, you can, for example, automatically email the customers who bought a product from you and ask them for a review of that product. You should let the customer know that in return for their review of the product, they will get, for example, a 20% coupon on their next purchase.
🔶 Automated WooCommerce user tracking using external services
To provide multichannel customer tracking that integrates networks, chats, emails, marketing campaigns, websites, apps, and more, you should use a CRM.
You can easily connect and automate the data exchange between your WooCommerce online store and your CRM of choice. One good CRM solution for WooCommerce is HubSpot for WooCommerce.
What this plugin does is sync your WooCommerce data with the HubSpot CRM. Using those data, you can later do many things related to marketing automation, user tracking, and abandoned cart recovery on the HubSpot CRM platform.
In this article, we discussed 6 different ways to Automate WooCommerce and how you can implement them in your online shop. Automating WooCommerce will increase your sales and save a lot of your time by eliminating repetitive tasks.
We suggest you start by increasing your average order value through the ways we discussed. To increase sales, you should also focus on automating upsell and cross-sells in your WooCommerce shop. Through increased sales and thus more money available, you can implement other ways discussed above much better.
Be it sending follow-up emails to the customers or offering related and frequently bought together products to the customers, you should try automating WooCommerce.
Do you know any other ways to automate WooCommerce that we did not discuss here? Let us know in the comments below.