10 productivity strategies for eCommerce pros
The eCommerce industry is demanding, requiring even casual entrepreneurs to spend countless hours and significant effort polishing their websites to perfection. There are plenty of articles providing tips for how to get higher conversion rates, increase engagement, and make your products visible to your target audience. But sometimes we focus too much on the desired end results and not enough on the paths necessary to get there. You need to invest some time in productivity strategies.
Microsoft Office 365 from GoDaddy offers a plethora of tools, like Outlook and Excel, to keep you organized and productive.
If you can get more done in the span of fewer hours, or accomplish your goals with more efficiency, you’ll increase your total return, especially over the long term.
10 productivity strategies to supercharge your eCommerce business
Consider giving your productivity a massive boost with these 10 important strategies:
- Make a plan for the next day.
- Automate everything you can.
- Take control of your email habits.
- Establish separate periods for communication.
- Outsource what isn’t worth your time.
- Have themed days.
- Take more breaks.
- Create a consistent morning routine.
- Set time limits for your tasks.
- Take the Kaizen approach.
Let’s get productive!
1. Make a plan for the next day
Because the world of an eCommerce pro can be chaotic — and because you wear many hats — it’s tempting to address a day’s challenges as they come up. However, it’s much more efficient and productive if you spend the night before making a proactive plan for the next day.
Even if you don’t stick to that plan precisely, it will help you establish your priorities and stay focused as you jump between tasks.
Related: Long-term planning strategies to make dreams come true
2. Automate everything you can
Next, try to automate everything you can — and thanks to today’s technology, there’s a lot you can automate. Every automatable item you pursue is one less task you’ll have to manually accomplish.
Chances are, some of these features are already available to you. For example, you might be able to automate your blog publishing schedule with your current website builder, or set up automatic alerts and reminders through your calendar. For other functions, you might have to look for a third-party app such as Zapier or IFTTT to get all your devices and apps to work together.
Editor’s note: Looking for a simple solution to your eCommerce woes? Check out GoCentral’s Online Store from GoDaddy. Not only can you easily build your eCommerce site, but you will also benefit from automated marketing emails, online scheduling and the ability to take payments.
3. Take control of your email habits
Let’s face it — your email inbox is probably a mess. Fortunately, there are some easy productivity strategies you can use to get organized — and stay that way.
For example, you can come up with a system to label, star or mark your emails according to different categories. Everything starts with awareness, so use an email analytics tool to monitor your habits as a first step.
Related: What is Microsoft Outlook in Office 365 and how can I use it?
4. Establish separate periods for communication
Communication likely takes up a big chunk of your day, whether it’s a phone call to a vendor or responding to an email from one of your subordinates.
Communication can be inherently productive, but it’s problematic when it’s distracting you from your other tasks. To resolve this, establish dedicated periods for communicating — such as 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. — and shut down communication outside those periods.
Editor’s note: Looking for an easy (and affordable) way to separate your business calls from your personal calls? Check out GoDaddy’s second phone number app, SmartLine.
5. Outsource what isn’t worth your time
Take a moment to think about how much your time is really worth. You might use your previous salary as a baseline, or calculate it based on how much productive work you can get done in an hour when you’re at your best.
Now, take that rate and compare it to rates for outsourcing various needs. For example, if you’re worth $100 an hour, but outsourcing your social media work will only cost you $25, it’s probably worth pulling the trigger. The more you outsource, the more time you’ll have to focus on what matters the most.
Related: Should you consider outsourcing customer service for your eCommerce business
6. Have themed days
It’s inefficient to be pulled in several different directions throughout a given day — though admittedly, it keeps things interesting.
Instead of adopting a free-for-all approach, establish specific theme days.
For example, you might spend one day working on new content, another day creating a new line of promotions, and another day working on your internal processes. This will minimize distractions and help you set better priorities for each day.
7. Take more breaks
Most eCommerce pros try to work as hard as possible as long as possible to get more done in a day. But, counterintuitively, it’s actually better to take frequent breaks. Breaks give your mind a chance to decompress, reducing the stress you experience, improving your focus, and allowing more idle time you can use to create new ideas. Make sure you’re walking away from the computer at least once every couple of hours, and take a vacation at least once a year.
Related: How to take a vacation when you’re a solopreneur
8. Create a consistent morning routine
Routines are powerful tools that prevent us from deviating too far from a productive norm.
Establishing a firm morning routine can help you get a productive start — and hopefully preserve that momentum on a daily basis.
Consider starting your morning with some exercise or mindfulness meditation. Then work on something predictable, like sorting through new emails or checking your website analytics.
Once you get into a consistent groove, you won’t be able to break the pattern.
9. Set time limits for your tasks
The adage of Parkinson’s Law states that the time it takes to complete a task tends to increase to fill whatever time was allocated for its completion.
Though not a true law in the scientific sense, you’ve likely experienced this in your own life. One-hour meetings tend to take an hour, no matter what. To combat this, set strict time limits for all your tasks. It will keep you at your best.
10. Take the Kaizen approach
The Kaizen approach is a philosophy that revolves around continuous, iterative improvements. While there’s a great deal of flexibility in how you specifically employ this approach, the core philosophy should help you successfully adopt new productivity strategies.
Rather than wiping the slate clean and coming up with a brand-new way of working, turn your attention to little things you can improve, one by one, to make your work more efficient.
Go to work on your productivity strategies
Working in eCommerce is tough, but it doesn’t have to take over your life, nor does it have to be a constant slog. With these productivity strategies, you can accomplish more each day, minimize the strain on your mind, body and personal life, and still improve your website’s results faster than ever before.