If you’re a business owner, there’s no doubt that you’re well aware that running a business takes a lot of time, work, and energy! As your company grows and you connect with more clients and potential customers, it’s only a matter of time until some routine tasks – like email, blogging, and maintaining relationships – become a bigger part of your workload! If that’s where you are with your business, I have great news – you don’t HAVE to do all those tasks manually! You can take work off your plate and free up time by automating your website, and in this post I’m going to tell you all about how you can make WordPress workflow automation work hard for your business.
According to a recent Zapier poll, almost 45% of people said automation tools helped reduce stress, nearly 40% said their overall mood improved, and almost 30% said they were more likely to take a vacation. I think all of us would love to have less stress and more good moods in our lives – not to mention more vacations 😎! That’s precisely the kind of progress I want to see in my business and help others get for their businesses!
So, what IS website automation, exactly? Automating your website means using software to turn the things you’re already doing manually into automated workflows. These tasks could be simple (like sending an email once a client has subscribed to your newsletter list) or more sophisticated (like sending an email only to clients with a specific marketing profile, based on their activity on your website). Automations can also publish or send pre-scheduled content to a blog or social media profile, making maintaining client relationships easier with less effort!
Without further ado, let’s get to the good stuff: all the details on how to automate your website to save time while doing less work and increase your company’s bottom line! Once you’ve set up a few handy automation tools, you’ll have more time to dream big, grow your business, or spend less time working and more time doing whatever you want to do!
So, how do you set up site automation to help you step away from manually doing each step for your business and get out from behind the keyboard? In my own service-based small business and while working with clients, I’ve learned which website automations really make an impact on streamlining workflows! There are four key automations to really focus on when you’re setting up your website:
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) & call scheduling
- Scheduling blog content
- Automate email marketing & responses
In this post, I’m going to share ways you can automate these parts of your workflow on your WordPress site – so you can get your website working for you, not the other way around!
Automate Your CRM
Customer Relationship Management, or CRM for short, is software that keeps track of your company’s interactions with potential and existing clients. Instead of maintaining a spreadsheet or file to record points of contact, call logs, and marketing information for each customer, CRMs allow for real-time updates in a centralized location that your whole team can use. And, of course, you can automate a lot of these functions!
From the first call you schedule with a client to signing a contract (and maintaining a client relationship), CRM automation can save you a TON of time! For example, instead of emailing or playing phone tag to find a meeting time that works for you and your client, you can set up an online calendar with your availability. Once people have the link to your scheduling calendar, they can choose which meeting time is best. As part of booking a meeting, you can also provide a pre-call questionnaire, so by the time you get on the call with your client, you’re in the know about their business and unique needs!
You can also set up many CRM systems to auto-generate a Zoom or Google meet link when a call is booked. After scheduling, all the details can automatically be synced with your Google Calendar or iCal, and both you and the client will receive an email with the meeting details. It’s a super easy process to make booking a meeting a seamless process – all you have to do is show up to the meeting on time – but don’t forget to do your regular meeting prep! 😉
Another great way to use CRM automation is for making offers, sending contracts, and billing. Many CRM systems have client onboarding, contract, and invoice templates to get you started – just customize them for your business and add in any common forms you like to use for your brand. After you’ve set up these templates, it only takes a few clicks to automatically fill in a company’s information and send copies to clients for signature, approval, or payment. You can also automate sending email reminders to clients, so you never lose track of an open offer or unsigned contract!
Tracking client relationship histories, scheduling meetings, and sending documents is just the beginning of what CRM systems can do to help you manage client relationships! It’s also possible to set up marketing tracking and email contact sequences to fit your company’s needs (just keep reading this post to hear more!)
You may have heard of some of the most popular CRMs, like Dubsado, Honeybook, and Calendly. Dubsado is my personal favorite – it’s like having a superpowered assistant on hand all the time! If you’re ready to get started with a CRM, my tried and trusted is Dubsado!
Automate Blog Posts
Adding a blog to your website is a great way to build a content database that will get your site showing up in search engine results (I’ll be doing a blog on this soon)! But it’s also an excellent way to build brand know, like, and trust with your ideal clients. Did you know that people are 90% more likely to recommend a brand they trust to someone else and 88% more likely to make a purchase with them?
But building trust through blogging on your site is about more than just posting blogs whenever you can write and post them – it’s about consistently showing up. When site visitors know when they can expect you to post new content, it elevates the trustworthiness of your brand. Posting new content to a blog on a regular schedule can actually be more challenging than it sounds! Once life (and business) get going, it’s not always easy to find the time to write and manually upload a post every few days, every week, or even every month.
The easiest way to guarantee consistent blog posting is to automate the process! You can write several blogs ahead of time, upload them to your blog, and schedule a posting time. Once you’ve decided on a blog schedule and written a post, this is so easy to do in WordPress! If you open the post in your WordPress editor and check out the right-hand menu, you’ll see a “Status & Visibility” section under the “Post” options. If you look for the “Publish” section, you’ll see its initial setting is “Immediately” – once you click on that, a calendar pops up, and you can choose the exact date and time you’d like to publish the blog. And voila! You’ve automated your blog posts!
Automate Email Autoresponders
Email is vital to maintaining and nurturing great client relationships, whether it’s keeping in touch with newsletters, reminding clients of an upcoming workshop, or letting someone know when they can expect a reply from your business. Of course, you don’t have to type every one of those emails by hand! autoresponders – simple scripts that automatically trigger an email reply – are a great way to get started with email automation in your business. You’ve probably received hundreds of emails from autoresponders, even if you didn’t realize it! Some typical times a company might use autoresponder emails include:
- When readers sign up to receive newsletters
- Creating a customer service support request
- When a customer purchases an item or signs up for a workshop
- Promoting events and webinars
- Setting an “out of office” email
You can also use autoresponders to send a series of emails to every new subscriber, familiarizing them with your brand and offerings. For example, when someone signs up for your marketing emails, they’ll first get a welcome email to introduce your business and brand, ask them to verify their email address and tell them how to set up an account. A week later, they’ll get an email to let them know where they can find & follow your brand on social media. Next, they might receive an email with a promotional offer to make a purchase on your site.
Once you’ve set up a series of emails, each new email subscriber will experience a consistent sequence of messages to guide them toward learning more about your brand! 59% of marketers say email is their biggest source of ROI – but that isn’t something you have to do individually for each client! Autoresponders are a fantastic way to tap into that ROI for your business!
Automating Email Marketing
While autoresponders are a simple and dependable way to deliver a consistent marketing experience to all customers, you can really level up your brand’s sales game by automating your email marketing! If you want a one-two punch that is sure to hone in on the best ways to communicate the right products and offers to your clients, autoresponders, and email marketing automation are a dream team! Autoresponders send emails out automatically when a customer takes certain actions, but email marketing automation digs deeper into customer behavior to customize the promotional process for individuals.
Email marketing automation is a way to segment users into different groups and then meet those groups with a focused message that will get powerful results. Including personalized recommendations in your email campaigns can increase sales per email opened by an average of 150%! You can be confident you’re reaching the right person with the right message at the right time. Together, autoresponders and email marketing automation can maximize your brand’s impact on potential clients!
Over the years, increasingly sophisticated and incredibly powerful tools have been developed to help businesses grow leads into full-blown customers. By using data about subscribers’ specific actions – like joining a particular launch email list, making a purchase, or clicking a link in an email – email marketing automation can provide customers with a targeted marketing experience and journey with your brand.
You’ve probably also received targeted automated marketing emails before! Some examples of email marketing automation might be:
- Recommending similar products from a website once a customer has made a purchase
- A reminder that you left something in your cart but didn’t finish a purchase on a website
- Alerting users to membership expirations and promoting renewal options
- Reconnecting with users that have been stagnant for a set amount of time
- Reminding someone that they haven’t finished filling out their profile on a site
Automating the email marketing process is a great way to personalize the customer’s experience with your brand and take the work out of evaluating data to customize client contact and sales pitches! It’s also an ideal way to scale your marketing strategy – a person doesn’t have to be behind the keyboard to make sure clients receive the right messaging, and product offers. This can all happen automatically and consistently, driven by user data!
There’s truly so much that automation of your WordPress website can do to work for you! Helping your business keep up with the essential housekeeping functions of tracking and managing customer relationships, communication records, and scheduling with a CRM system is just the beginning! Scheduling your blogs helps customers know where and when they can find your best business advice and connect with your brand. autoresponders get your fingers off of the keyboard and keep your company responding consistently to emails that current and future clients depend on to communicate with your company. Email marketing automation makes personalized customer experiences and pitches easier and more effective. All of these website automations ultimately help you build stronger relationships with customers, make better product offerings to the right potential clients, and increase your brand’s revenue!
There are so many great ways to automate your workflow and marketing functions that will keep your brand at the front of customers’ minds, build trust with them as they get to know your business, and (best of all!) give you back more time! With all that free time, you can spend time doing what you love, dreaming big, and growing your business to the next level.
As I’ve helped brands build and automate their custom WordPress sites, I’ve gotten to know the best ways to automate a site to make it do more of the hard work for you; schedule a call to chat through ways we can craft a site that works for you and your business – not the other way around.