If your're an online ecommerce retailer and are looking to meet the new standard of fast, simple order fulfillment you should note these easy tips maximize the processes.
There’s no doubt that making sales on your on-line store is one of the best parts of being an ecommerce business owner. However, the delivering of the product to the ccustomer could be a completely different story. It’s a team effort involving multiple members of your business, the shipping carriers and most importantly your fulfillment center, who ensures that the correct item is sent out for delivery.
The larger your business, the larger the process becomes. There are so many factors and moving pieces to consider, but all order fulfillment breaks down into a couple of straightforward steps: placement, picking, packing, dispatching and delivery.
So regardless if you are a small business or a large one, these tips will improve the overall operation for your eCommerce order fulfillment.
Track Your Inventory Levels
Throughout the year every online retailer sees peaks and valleys. Certain times, especially around the holidays, things become extremely busy and it’s easy to see how some e-tailers fail in properly assessing their inventory levels. Take careful notes of what will be placed on sale sale or what must be restocked prior to the peak in sales. This additionally applies to packing materials, which are vital for shipping out your merchandise.
You have many choices for inventory tracking software and many are already integrated with your online web hosting service, shopping carts, these cloud-based systems are the best option for keeping your entire team connected.
Finally, notify your fulfillment center about any upcoming sales or promotions which might affect your overall daily order volume, so that they can prepare for the increase.
Accurate Weights and Dimensions
Now is the best time to look at your online stores product catalog. If you haven’t already added or updated your product’s dimensions and weight, you’re missing a chance to optimize the packing part of your order fulfillment method. Having those specifications easily accessible for your fulfillment center will help you understand the correct calculation of shipping prices and also the restocking of packing/shipping materials.
In fact you will also save money by knowing the actual cost of your shipments and will not be surprised by an invoice that is astronomical. Companies such as Black Mountain Fulfillment allow their clients to maintain their own postage accounts to ensure both transparency and upfront, real time costs.
Communication Is Key
Communicating is often the most difficult thing we do in our daily lives. Some of us are just too busy and others simply do not know how to convey a message clearly. Increasing communication throughout your logistics and retail team is essential. It has 2 benefits: happy customers and accountability.
In today's online world it is not simple enough for a business to contact customers once and then leave them guessing when their purchase has been delivered. Online shoppers are searching for customer specific communications.
This also allows a period for the customer to contact you at any step along their journey to resolve any issues that might have arisen since their time of purchase. It's much easier to see a what point in the fulfillment process things might have occurred if you're in communication with the customers from start to finish.
Your eCommerce business will invariably face obstacles and you can always stand to improve different aspects of it. If you optimize the order fulfillment process into its simplest form, sales will follow.