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Christmas is just around the corner, and for everyone in e-commerce that means time is in short supply. So we have time-saving tips from three e-commerce pros who have survived the seasonal rush before. Hopefully these will help you prepare for a more efficient 2014!

Streamline your process from the get-go

When you are first launching a new store — or even just a new campaign — it can be tempting to throw something together and launch in a hurry. While this strategy may work in the short term, it can lead to unnecessary hassles and stress later on. As Daniel Rensing of TheSmartBaker.com, said, it’s a lot easier to expand and grow if you have efficient processes from the early stages.

Focus on building a strong SEO foundation

When it comes to streamlining the process, a big area of focus should be your store's SEO foundation. Having your SEO built correctly is a surefire way to get a steady stream of new leads trickling into your store.  As Dan P. of All Play Kitchens points out, this means setting up 301 redirects and using Google Webmaster Tools from the get-go.

After creating your Google Webmaster Tools account, the first thing you need to do is submit your sitemap to Google. Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to do this.

If you have migrated from another platform, such as ProStores, Volusion or Shopify, you will also want to make sure you set up 301 redirects for any pages that were not brought over. This ensures that your customers don’t get any 404 errors. Fortunately we make it really easy to bulk import your 301 redirects.

Streamline your shipping processes

Ask 10 store owners what their biggest hassle is and I guaranteed at least seven will say something related to shipping. To save time, it’s critical that you have efficient shipping processes. If the order details are wrong, shipping addresses are incorrect or the shipments are constantly late, I don’t care how awesome the rest of your store is, your hard-won customers won't be back.

One great tip from Jonathan Rench, who runs ForcedFabllc.com, is to use Stamps.com. Whether it’s just preparing orders with USPS or printing shipping labels, Jon uses Stamps.com to save time when preparing shipments.

Want more great time-saving tips from store owners just like you? Log in and post a question in the Bigcommerce community forum

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