It’s no secret that running an online business can be a boatload of work.
From creating beautiful products and answering customer questions, to selling and shipping orders, the daily to-dos can feel never-ending. Add in less glamorous tasks like bookkeeping and inventory management, and you may find yourself forgetting the joys of working for yourself.
Luckily, you can minimize the time you spend on small-but-necessary tasks by automating data entry, subscriber emails, invoices, and project updates. One of the simplest ways to get started with automation is by connecting your Big Cartel store to Zapier, a workflow automation tool that does the tedious stuff for you. With Zapier, you can automate all of your business’ routine tasks by linking your Big Cartel store directly to over 750 business apps including MailChimp, Google Sheets, QuickBooks Online, and many more.
Here are some of the ways you can use this handy tool to create simple automations called “Zaps” to help your business run more smoothly. (Big Cartel was even just named one of the fastest-growing apps in 2017, which means there’s now a huge community to draw inspiration from.)
Here are just three ways the Big Cartel community is using Zapier. Better yet, we’ve included the automations these store owners use to get their work done - so you can steal their time-saving secrets for yourself.
Share Wins With Your Team
Whether you just won over a new client, signed a hefty order, or hit a sales milestone, it’s fun to take a pause and celebrate with your team.
For Italian publication company Lahar Magazine, that celebration happens in Slack. Zapier watches for new orders in their online store and shares the news via a celebratory bot announcement. The team’s “Moneybot” shares the details of any new order with the entire team, detailing the product sold, the customer’s name, and the amount of the sale.
The result of this integration? More time spent on the creative work that builds their brand and a boost in team morale to boot. That’s something everyone can rally around and celebrate.
Start a Sales History from New Orders
St. Kilda Mums, an Australian charity focused on supporting families in need, quickly recognized how hard it can be to track customer purchases, contact information, and support interactions over time. Even if you do collect all this data, loading it into specialized software can be time-consuming and expensive. So they turned to Zapier to find a solution.
Today, its founders use over a dozen different Zaps to keep their team running efficiently and their donor data organized. One of their favorites is an integration that connects their Big Cartel store, used to sell event tickets, to their Salesforce account. This automation centralizes all of their donor and customer data with Salesforce. That way, the team can focus on what they’re really passionate about and leave the tedious work behind. It’s a win-win.
Build Your List Automatically
The people behind Big Cartel practice what they preach. Not only do they help folks like you build beautiful stores to showcase their work - some of them run their own online shops, too.
Community Coordinator Sarah Anderson is the creative force behind City of Industry, which sells enamel pins that double as badges of honor for passion projects like writing, knitting, and crafting. Because she also values her community, Sarah makes it a priority to connect with her customers through a personality-packed monthly newsletter.
Sarah discovered Zapier as a way to automatically build a subscriber list from visitors to her store. Now, whenever a new customer places an order, a Zap subscribes the customer to a list in MailChimp.
This automation helps her keep her online audience intact and connected. As for updating her subscriber data by hand? She put a pin in it.
Create Automations as Unique as Your Business
When running a creative business, you can’t afford to get bogged down in to-do lists, tedious data entry, or bookkeeping. The heart of your business is your unique craft, not your paperwork. Simple automations are a way to unlock more time to master your craft and spend less time on the mundane (but necessary!) day-to-day work of running your store.
It takes just a few clicks to connect your Big Cartel store to other apps. Here’s how you do it:
- Sign-up for a Zapier account
- Visit the Zapbook for Big Cartel
- Select a popular integration or create your own
- Follow Zapier’s instructions for linking your store to other apps
Hayley Campbell is a freelance copywriter working with startups and other businesses from her living room in Athens, Georgia.