Before you get started on your e-commerce adventure, it’s always important to consider the available apps that are out there to help streamline your process as much as possible. Whether you’re looking for a shipping or inventory tracking apps, customer relations apps, fulfillment apps, or other options, there are plenty of them out there to choose from. Here are five of the best Shopify apps to consider when you launch your online business.
1) Shipping & Fulfillment
ShippingEasy is a shipping app that integrates with Shopify and makes it easy to create shipping labels. The app handles all your rates, as well as automates customs declarations on international shipments. Whether you are a one-person shop or managing multiple warehouses from a single account, ShippingEasy has you covered with unlimited carriers and flexible billing options. The fee is $10 per month after your 30-day free trial expires.
2) Accounting App
Xero is an all-in-one accounting app, which can be set up on your phone or downloaded as a desktop app. It automatically categorizes transactions, you can invoice clients and send receipts via email. You can also customize reports to see how your business is doing financially and what areas you might need to focus on next. A free trial is available for those who want to test out some of Xero’s features before deciding whether to pay monthly fees.
3) Inventory App
Since we’re talking about eCommerce, let’s dive into one of your best bets when it comes to managing inventory. Now, you may be thinking: Can’t I just use Excel? The answer is yes. But then you have to take every single change back into Excel and make sure everything syncs up in time for your next order. With any inventory app, all changes are automatically reflected on all other connected devices—which means no double work.
4) CRM / Communication App
If you’re using an email service like Mailchimp or Constant Contact to keep in touch with your customers, stop right now. I used these services early on, and they weren’t built for business. You don’t want to be sending a mass email out every time you need something from your customers—your emails will get buried, and people will forget who you are. A CRM app like Salesforce gives you more control over managing your contacts, tracking sales deals/opportunities, and communicating with leads and customers. Instead of spending an hour each day prepping an email newsletter, you can spend that time finding new ways to grow your store instead.
5) Ordering & Payroll App
Unless you’re a bookkeeping wizard, you don’t have time to manually run payroll for your small business. Fortunately, there are tons of great apps out there that will help you do it without hiring someone else to handle it all. Paychex is an online payroll service and one of the most popular in America. They charge a monthly fee based on how many employees you have, with additional charges based on company size and what your employees receive (e.g., commissions). They also let users import existing pay stubs so they can quickly get their staff up and running—not bad considering how expensive traditional accounting firms can be.