10 Ways to Automate Google Drive with Zapier to Improve Your Business Operations, Fast


Google Drive is one of the most versatile and popular storage tools used by small businesses and enterprise corporations alike. This file-syncing app makes it easy to store your files online, keep your Google docs, sheets, and other files organized, and even share them across multiple devices with your team, clients, and more. Why should you pay for clunky, complicated database and file-sharing tools when you’ve got a great tool like Drive ready and waiting to be put to work?

With Zapier, you can instantly connect your Drive platform to more than 3,000 apps and tools so that you can supercharge your productivity and streamline your work in many different ways. Drive keeps your files updated, organized, and secure, and Zapier offers automatic file management so that you have everything that you need right when and where you need it most. 

If you’re not familiar with Zapier yet, you should be. This automation tool is designed to streamline all of your most basic and routine tasks, and even some of the more complex ones, so that you can free up more of your time and put the power of automation to work for your brand. The app offers several different integrations with pre-built actions and triggers, including hundreds of workflows that are ready to go. Plus, it’s got an open API so that businesses can customize integrations and workflows down to the last detail. 

Automation and collaboration are changing the way that companies do business. Using the best tools in your tech stack means harnessing their full potential in any way that you can. In the list below, we’ll talk about some of the best workflows to use Zapier to automate your Google Drive, no matter what business you’re in or what kind of tasks you’re trying to take off your plate. 

First, though, let’s discuss the power of automation and AI and what you’ll be missing if you don’t get on board. 

The benefits of automation

Automation and AI are evolving at a rapid rate, and even Google is doing its part to incorporate as much AI as possible in its platforms and tools. Of course, no matter where you find it or how you put it to use, several perks come with automation. It’s not just for manufacturing and production, either. Business Process Automation (BPA) is a big topic right now because it can help increase performance, productivity, and so much more. 

Here’s a glimpse at just what you get when you choose to add automation to your to-do list. 

  • Increased Productivity: When tasks are automated, the entire business is more productive. Your team will spend less time on tedious busywork and more time on the things that matter. Better yet, you can get out of the office and get back to enjoying your life!
  • Improved Quality: Automation has a big part in quality control. When you put routine tasks on autopilot, you can guarantee consistent, high-quality results every single time. Removing the human element reduces the risk of errors and it’s even easier to standardize processes and tasks. 
  • Reduced Operating Expenses: When you’re spending less time on busywork and using fewer resources to get things done, you’re going to save a lot in the way of your operating expenses. You will see reductions in payroll due to hours going down, fewer business expenses, and more. 
  • Reduction in Workforce Needs: In times like now when people are struggling to find reliable help, being able to automate is a great way to bridge the divide. Not only can you improve operations by automating tasks, but you can reduce your need for human staff to handle all of the details. 
  • Visible, Measurable Stats: When you have automated tasks in place, you will find it that much easier to track your analytics and metrics. You can’t stay ahead of the competition and figure out how to develop the best marketing strategies without knowing where you stand, after all. Using automation allows you to keep tabs on everything and evaluate periodically, make changes, and keep improving. 

People used to say that the future is automated. They still say that, but the problem is that the future is now. If you’re not on board, you’re going to get left behind. Embrace automation with tools like Zapier and get started on better business operations today. While you’re at it, consider embracing a partnership with our virtual receptionists here at Smith.ai to handle your after-hours call answering and other mission-critical services.

Now, let’s take a look at what Zapier can do for Google Drive. 

1. Get Slack notifications when new files appear in Google Drive    

Using this workflow, you can keep your team in the loop at all times. Collaboration is critical for remote teams and Slack is one of the most useful tools for it today. Set this workflow into action and every time the specific type of file appears in Google Drive, a notification will be sent to Slack. You can even pick and choose who the notification is sent to, have it added to a board or channel, and so much more. 

2. Add new Drive files to Dropbox automatically    

Dropbox is one of the most popular file-sharing tools used by those who choose a third-party platform. You can set it up to share all kinds of files with your remote teams, or even use it in-house to keep everything organized and streamlined. Simply choose the files from Drive that you want to be added, set the trigger, and when they are created, they will get sent right to Dropbox without you having to invest the effort. 

3. Send Gmail messages when new Drive files are added    

You can dig around and try to find the permissions to set this up through Google and hope that it doesn’t miss the mark, but that’s usually going to be a shot in the dark. With this workflow, you can guarantee that every Drive file that gets added will result in you getting an email notification, or a notification going to whoever should get it. You can choose to send this notification to an entire team or individuals, and even pick and choose the files that notifications are sent for, with customization that’s a breeze. 

4. Create Drive files for your Instagram posts    

If you’re using Instagram, you probably want to back up your posts. It might not seem important now, but eventually, you may reach a point where you need to reference old campaigns or access old information. Perhaps you just want to track your marketing or social media campaigns in a single place. With this integration, that’s easy to do. Just set a trigger so that every time you generate an Instagram post, it’s turned into a Drive file. That way, you can keep everything organized and never have to scroll through endless feeds to find what you need. 

5. Create Google Drive folders from rows added to Google Sheets    

If you’re using Sheets to manage your campaigns or other parts of your business, having this workflow is going to help you keep everything moving. You can easily auto-generate folders in Drive from the rows in your Google Sheets files, saving you a step once you have the action set in place. This automated workflow will let you pick which Sheets files and rows to use and where to create the new files within Drive, letting you customize your automation just the way you need. 

6. Create new Drive folders from Google Forms submissions    

Google Forms offers a simple way to take in information from clients, employees, and even just interested leads or potential vendors. With this automated workflow, you can send all of the Forms submissions that you get right to Drive, either by creating their very own folders or by adding them to other destinations that you already have in place. You can select certain kinds of submissions to get saved or pick the parameters under which this workflow occurs, or just set it up so all Forms show up as Drive folders. 

7. Create Trello cards when Drive files are created   

Today’s teams use tools like Trello every single day to communicate, keep projects organized, and more. If you are one of them, this workflow is for you. Simply set up the action and when someone creates a Drive file that meets the parameters, it will be sent to a Trello card, either as a new project, notification, or anything else that you want. That way, everyone will know it’s time to move forward on this file or be aware that changes have been made. 

8. Copy your Google Drive files to OneDrive automatically   

It’s rare these days that you’ll only use one file platform in business. If you’ve got multiple systems and tools in place, having automations to keep everything synchronized is going to help you in several ways. This automation will allow you to “Zap” all your Drive files right into OneDrive, based on whatever parameters you have in mind. This is a great way to keep everything organized when you have to use Microsoft and Google collaboratively.

9. Upload new Google Drive videos to YouTube   

YouTube is used by businesses today more than ever, so having automations that make it easier can help. Save your team the hassles of uploading videos for hours and doing all of the tedious details by using this automation. Simply pick the video files that you want to be tagged for automatic uploading and then let Zapier do the rest. You can even set it up so that all videos are uploaded or only select certain folders or destinations to access, and more. 

10. Create text documents in Google Drive from Facebook Ads leads     

Tracking your Facebook Ads leads can prove to be a bit of a challenge if you’re not prepared. Fortunately, you can use the tools that you have on hand to do everything, including your Google Drive storage. Simply set the trigger for this workflow and watch all of your Facebook leads show up as text documents right in the Drive folder of your choosing. This way, you can dole them out to your team or just make sure that everyone’s aware that new leads came in. 

Automate more and let us handle the details at Smith.ai

We love the power of automation. We also love being one of the reasons that your business is running better—or several of them. Hire our virtual receptionists to act as the face of your brand and you’ll be able to rely on us for everything from live website chat to after-hours answering, new client intake, and so much more. Plus, we’ll even help create the perfect strategy to field every need, no matter what they might be. 

Zapier is one of the best tools and it’s one of our favorites because it makes it easy for anyone to create smart workflows between the business software tools they use. And thanks to Zapier, Smith.ai can integrate with more than 3,000 apps and tools so all your chats, calls, and texts are logged in the right software, at the right time, from your CRM to marketing platforms, and more. 

Check out our apps to explore how we connect to Zapier! Learn more about Smith.ai’s Answering Service app on Zapier, and explore Smith.ai’s Website Chat app on Zapier.

Schedule a consultation to find out how our virtual receptionists can help improve your operations by taking all these tasks off your plate and more. From after-hours answering to 24/7 live website chat, and so much more, we’ve got you covered. You'll also find us at hello@smith.ai or (650) 727-6484.

Business Education
Apps and Software
Written by Sean Lund-Brown

Sean Lund-Brown is a current Marketing Assistant for Smith.ai. A graduate from Metropolitan State University of Denver, Sean graduated with a BA in Music and an individualized degree in Teaching Vocal Pedagogy.

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Take the faster path to growth.
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Affordable plans for every budget.