Before leaving for a vacation, make sure to automate your Amazon business. This is important so you won’t have to deal with stressful emergency phone calls or emails from assistants and customers. To have a truly relaxing vacation, you need to put your mind off from work. Many busy business owners tend to have poor vacation experiences because they are taking the stressful demands of work with them. Don’t let this be you.
As an entrepreneur, you might feel that you can’t take time off from work because of the need to maintain or increase your sales performance and metrics. And there are just simply too many things to juggle, such as processes, obligations to clients, and communication with suppliers. How can it be impossible to have an uninterrupted, stress-free vacation with the family if this is the world you live in?
Facing these responsibilities on a daily basis, along with some challenges with customers and sales, you can’t hope to take a relaxing vacation. But you can automate your Amazon business beforehand. To avoid worrying about your Amazon business while you’re away, prepare to automate your Amazon business by properly setting up virtual assistants to take over while you’re away.
The Number One Rule for All Amazon Entrepreneurs – Communicate With Freelancers
Never ignore the fact that even when you are on vacation, you may still have to deal with phone calls and emails from freelancers asking for clarifications, permission, approval, etc. This is especially true if an unexpected Amazon or Seller Central issue comes up. But this does not mean that you will need to be glued to your inbox – which would defeat the purpose of going on vacation.
Here are some useful communication automation tips you can apply with freelancers:
- Use a scheduling tool, such as Trello, to organize the tasks of each member. This allows you to check their work or communicate with them whenever you’re available.
- Be sure to brief freelancers ahead of time that you’re leaving for vacation. Specify the time of your departure and the time of your return. Also, tell them that you’ll only be available during specific times. Make all the necessary adjustments and communicate this with them, especially if you’ll be in another country with a different time zone.
- Encourage freelancers to communicate amongst themselves about what they have worked on before the work week ends. Assign someone to summarize in a document what they have discussed and accomplished so you can check on their progress. That way, you’re still updated on each members’ contributions.
Communicate with Key Stakeholders Ahead of Time
Talk to your suppliers, clients, partners, etc. before you leave for vacation so that they won’t have to bother you with miscellanies during your time off. Effective communication is always the key to business success. You certainly do not want to leave your key stakeholders hanging, so it’s best to update them regarding your plans – where you will be going and how long you will be away. This will keep them from wondering why you can’t respond to them promptly.
You can create an out-of-office email that looks like a FAQ page and contains links to specific information that can possibly answer the most common questions. Include your website contact page or relevant blog posts. You can also create generic autoresponder emails. These, however, can be utterly frustrating for clients, suppliers, and partners. It is not the usual prompt service that you deliver, and it cannot effectively resolve issues or answer queries.
What you can do to really automate your Amazon business is to leave this task to a Virtual Assistant. Even if you have taken care of all the pending issues before your vacation, this will maintain a high level of service in case other issues come up while you’re away. Create an autoresponder with the email address of the VA you are leaving in charge, or a common email address that this freelancer can access. If your suppliers, partners, or clients need an immediate response for a particular issue, this representative will be available to take care of them in the meantime.
Automate Basic Financial Tasks Using Accounting Software
Software is available in the online market that functions to make repetitive financial tasks easier. Payroll and accounting tasks, for example, as well as sending invoices, tracking transactions, and generating financial reports are some of the features of modern software such as QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Pastel.
Accounting software allows you to automate your Amazon business so that you don’t need to worry about these kinds of repetitive tasks. Preparing for your vacation will also be less stressful since you will have less to clean off your plate before you leave. When you get to your destination, accounting automation will keep your financial activities running smoothly in the background. When you return, you won’t have to spend a lot of time catching up on the books.
If you still need adjustments made to purchase orders and similar manual tasks, hire a VA to take care of it for you. You can hire short-term freelancers from marketplaces like FreeeUp who can step in and take over when you need them. And who knows, they might do so well that you’ll want them to stay on when you get back so you can spend your time on other things.
One More Thing
Automating your Amazon business using these three tips will help you have a great vacation. It will not, however, mean that you won’t have any catching up to do at all once you’re back online. Your key stakeholders will expect your return and may demand facetime. You will also want to meet with freelancers to get updates and get back on the same page with everyone. Always anticipate post-vacation backlog and be prepared to deal with it systematically – on top of possible jetlag and holiday hangover.
This article was contributed by VA Central. Raise your game further by providing Amazon and Seller Central training to Virtual Assistants. We at VA Central provide a complete training guide to make your life simpler and Virtual Assistants’ tasks easier.