6 Office Automation Tools to Help You Streamline Your Small Business

As a small-business owner, do you ever find yourself working on essential yet tedious tasks that eat into time? While these tasks are a crucial part of running a business, your time could be better spent concentrating on work that generates income. Fortunately, there’s a vast array of office automation tools that can allow you to do just that.

These tools, which range from bookkeeping to meeting scheduling, can save you hours by fully automating repetitive tasks, allowing you to spend more time interacting with customers, crafting handmade products, creating services that your customers want, and even relaxing.

While the possibilities for automation are endless, below are six office automation tools to get you started.

1. Bookkeeping

With money consistently coming in and out of your business, finding a way to track exactly what’s going on will make it easier when the time comes to pay your quarterly taxes. Bookkeeping software, such as Quickbooks, allows you to connect all your financial accounts, including your business credit card, PayPal, and point of sale system. Every time you make a sale or purchase supplies, this software automatically pulls in your expenses and income, which it can later use to generate financial reports.

2. Appointment scheduling

Ever written several back-and-forth emails with a potential partner or customer trying to find a mutually good time to meet? If you have a WordPress.com plugin-enabled plan, save yourself the hassle and use a booking plugin. You set your availability so others can choose a time that works for them. These programs can also sync with the digital calendar you use so the meetings are automatically added to it.

3. Social sharing

Social sharing applications such as Buffer or Hootsuite let you automatically schedule social media posts to all your channels. Whether you’ve written a new blog post or have a product or service you want to highlight, these automation tools help you get the word out across all your social accounts with no need to manually post to each channel. Many social sharing tools are available as plugins, so you can seamlessly integrate them with your WordPress.com Business website.

4. Marketing

Use pop-up forms to automatically capture customers’ contact information and integrate it with your email marketing service provider, such as ConvertKit, MailChimp, or Constant Contact. Setting up email campaigns instead of using individualized emails will allow you to welcome subscribers to your list, let them know how your business can help them, and address common concerns and questions. You can even prompt customers to get on the phone for a call using your appointment scheduler.

5. Accept payments

Rather than manually sending an invoice every time someone wants to purchase a product or pay for a service, set up Simple Payments, which is available for WordPress.com users with a Premium or plugin-enabled plan. It can also be integrated with PayPal to give you instant access to your money.

6. Chatbots

Have you ever been on a website and noticed a speech bubble appear asking how it can help you? There’s a good chance it’s a chatbot, and even the smallest businesses can use one as an office automation tool. As Forbes explains, chatbots can provide customer service, make product recommendations, and even complete marketing campaigns.

With these automation tools, time-consuming duties can be streamlined to make more time for the important tasks that will help you grow your business.


Bev Feldman

Bev Feldman is a Boston-based jewelry designer, blogger, and freelance writer specializing in eCommerce, blogging, small business, and parenting. She's passionate about eco-friendly living, which you can read about in her personal blog, bevgoesgreen.com.

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