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4 Tasks Merchants Should Not Be Doing Manually

Whether your eCommerce store is brand new or well established, there are tasks that you should not be wasting your precious human resources on. There are plenty of tools that can automate the time-consuming busywork that merchants get bogged down in. Let’s have a look at four of the tasks you can automate with ease.


1. Running Retargeting Ads 

Retargeting ads have an impressive ROI, hitting 200+%, so they’re a must-do for any modern merchant. That said, running retargeting ads well can be a huge drain on your company’s time. Between building audiences and creating and iterating on ads, retargeting ads are quite literally a full-time job.

These days, though, there are more than a few systems that can automate your retargeting ads, and automate them well, like Shoelace, Rontar, and AdScale. Shoelace even has a team of real retargeting experts who can pay attention to the automated campaigns for you.


2. Sending "Thank you" Notes

Thank you notes are a smart post-purchase gesture to delight your customer and encourage future purchases. Thank you emails can be easily automated from your email marketing system. Set up an email with some dynamic tokens to personalize it a bit and have it send a day or two after the item is delivered.

However, a generic thank you email isn’t nearly as delightful as a handwritten thank you note. Handwritten thank you notes convey that you were grateful enough for the purchase to take time out of your day to write something unique for that customer and place it in snail mail. And guess what? You can actually automate these too! There are a number of apps available for Shopify that will automatically mail handwritten cards for you, like Thankster.

Personally, I would recommend a combination of these two approaches. Use email thank yous for most customers and send handwritten thank yous to large purchases.  


3. Emailing When an Order Has Been Delayed

Shipping delays happen, and if they’re not handled well, you’re nearly guaranteed to lose a customer. Historically, “handling a shipping delay well” means providing some sort of compensation when or if the customer takes the time to notify you about the delay. Being pro-active would require hand-auditing shipments regularly to discover what’s been delayed.

In the past few years, though, tools have been developed to automate the auditing of shipments, as well as the sending of an apology. Pro-active support can be used to turn a bad situation into a delightful one instead.

Your solution will depend on your tech stack. If your order tracking system is integrated with your marketing automation system, you can likely set up an automation within the marketing system to monitor for delays and send out an email to the customer. If that’s not the case, Shopify stores can use a general automation app like Mesa. You can audit your shipments within a workflow. That workflow can then trigger an email from your email marketing system.


4. Reordering When an Order Isn’t Delivered in Time 

Shipping delays can cause more than just frustration - they can compromise your products, as well. Perishable goods often have a small window they can be shipped in, and nearly any delay will ruin them. For stores using a general automation tool like Mesa, reordering the items can be added as another step in the apology flow. 

This task could also be partially automated with your order tracking system. Some tracking systems can flag orders that have been in transit for a particular period of time. Once flagged, someone can easily go through and reorder the items.



These simple tasks may not seem to take much time out of your day, but when you add up the minutes spent over a week or a month, you’re losing a lot of time. By automating them, you can free up hours to work on the projects you can never seem to get to.

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