If you sell custom made-to-order products with longer processing times, such as T-shirts, mugs or even prescription eyewear, you may want to send status update emails to your customers to keep them in the loop on the status of their order.

The Use Case

A user on Reddit who runs a small business making custom products wanted an email app that could send emails to customers to keep them updated on the process and status of their order.

Specifically, the store was looking for a solution where they could add a tag to an order, and the app would send the relevant email to the customer based on the order tag.

You can see the original Reddit post embedded below.


Based on my research, there are two apps that enable you to send emails to customers triggered by tags (or flows) you assign to their order:

  1. Mechanic (for the technically-inclined) with tags
  2. Custom Order Status (for those seeking a simple solution) with flows


If you’re going to try Mechanic, follow these steps:

1. Click the following Mechanic Task: “Email customers when their order is tagged

2. On the page, click ‘Try This Task”

3. Enter your Shopify store URL and click “Continue.”

4. On the task detail, change “Tag to watch for” value to “preparing to print” and customise the message. Also, uncheck “Ignore orders older than this task” so that you can test this task on an older order.

5. After customising your message, you can send yourself a test email by clicking “Expand Preview” on the right and “Send a copy”

6. Now, it’s time to tag an order to trigger the email! Find the order you want to tag and add “preparing to print” as the tag.

7. That’s pretty much all there is to it! If you want to check that the email was sent, you can click back into Mechanic and see recent events.

8. And when you return to the order, you should see another tag added that says preparing to print-email-sent.

Custom Order Status

If you’re going to try Custom Order Status, follow these steps:

1. From Dashboard, click “Create and Manage Statuses”

2. On Status Settings, click “New Status”

3. Enter your Status Name (“Preparing to print” in our example) and check “Sends an Email to customer when status is set”

4. On Orders, click “Sync”

5. Find the order you want to tag and click the grey “– not set –” box to change the order’s status

6. In the Update Status pop-up window, select “Preparing to print” and click the Update button

7. Voila, the order’s status is now “Preparing to print”

8. Now, click “Email Templates” in the top navigation bar, choose the template you want to update, change its text and click “Save Template”

9. Once you do, Custom Order Status will send an email to the customer based on the tag (or order status) you assign the order.


There are two apps on the Shopify app store that can help you send emails to customers based on order tags — Mechanic and Custom Order Status. Whereas Mechanic is great for tech-savvy folks, Custom Order Status may be the easier option for most of us.

Which method works better for you?