5 Important Tricks to Maximize Sales Velocity in eCommerce Business in 2022
In our everyday life, we get hundreds of notifications on our mobile phones through the various applications we have downloaded. They are loaded with new offers, flash sales, newly launched products and much more. Businesses are spending millions on such promotional activities through the help of campaigning and CRM tools. The ultimate goal of them is to create sales opportunities. These sales opportunities help immensely to boost the presence of a company to their existing customers and also to new customers but the following question arises - Are those people continuing to buy products now or at any time in the future? This should be an important question that every eCommerce retailer should ask themselves. They should find out the rate of an increase or decrease in sales within a certain time frame. This captivating process is called sales velocity in eCommerce. What is Sales Velocity in eCommerce? Sales velocity in eCommerce is a term used to describe the measurement of revenue an eCommerce business earns within a given time period. It is a useful practice for brands to forecast their actual revenue generation in order to know the running cost & profit/loss of their business for the specified time period and how it is going to perform in the future. [contactus_uth] Sales Velocity Formula To calculate the sales velocity of an eCommerce business, you first need to bifurcate the business into segments such as small, medium and large. As every company has its unique definition of what constitutes each segment, the seller should divide them accordingly. After determining the market segments, apply the sales velocity formula for each one of them. Sales Velocity = (Total number of Opportunities x Deal Value x Win Rate) / Length of Sales Cycle(a time period) Why is it Necessary for Businesses to Track Sales Velocity in eCommerce? The capacity of a business to thrive and develop is largely determined by sales velocity in eCommerce. The quicker prospects move through your pipeline, the better your chances are of maintaining high velocity sales. As a result, high velocity sales reflect that a business is generating a lot of income in a short amount of time. Tracking sales velocity in eCommerce over time helps a seller to compare their company's performance to that of other companies, the efficacy of particular departments or areas and evaluate how changes in sales processes affect an organization, for better or worse. Understanding sales velocity in eCommerce can also assist companies in better forecasting and determining how to optimize the sales process for faster and more high velocity sales. 4 Important Factors That Impact Sales Velocity in eCommerce The four factors that impact sales velocity in eCommerce are and help to high velocity sales: Number of Opportunities(Qualified Leads)Average Deal ValueWin/Conversion RateDuration of Sales Cycle Number of Opportunities(Qualified Leads) A certain quantity of opportunities is always in your pipeline. Check to see if they're legitimate opportunities. Your bottom line will suffer if your pipeline is full of junk leads with only a few that have a possibility of converting. Average Deal Value In every transaction, the most important resource for both parties involved is time. Make sure you're getting the most out of it. For both your prospect and yourself, incorporating offers or add-ons will improve the calibre of leads while also raising your average deal value and high velocity sales. It is a lot more relevant for companies offering software as a service or businesses that use the subscription model, where customer lifetime value is the most important factor for the business. Win/Conversion Rate Your average win rate is determined by the number of high-quality leads you generate. To find the win rate, divide the number of sales achieved by the total number of sales opportunities that came across. It can later be subcategorized into SQL and MQL. SQL or Sales Qualified Leads are the leads that are converted into sales whereas,MQL or Marketing Qualified Leads are the leads that may get converted into sales in the future. Duration of Sales Cycle This is the only aspect of sales velocity in eCommerce that you should avoid increasing. Shortening your average sales cycle and closing more quality deals faster can be accomplished by creating a more efficient sales process, revising your sales playbook and occasionally adding manpower to your sales force. 5 Tricks for an eCommerce Business to Achieve High-Velocity Sales Once an eCommerce company's sales velocity has been precisely determined, it can be improved by increasing the number of opportunities, average deal size and win rate or shortening the sales cycle. Increase the Number of Qualified Leads Sales velocity in eCommerce can be increased by increasing sales opportunities and sales opportunities can be increased by converting leads into qualified leads. A lead is a potential customer who has shown interest in a business by reaching out and interacting with it through inquiries through calls and emails and attending a seminar or exhibition by the business, etc. Leads are then turned into sales after the business takes care to qualify them within time. Conversely, an opportunity is a qualified lead. It means that the business has dealt with the lead and then converted it into a sale. A pipeline full of leads isn't always a positive thing as it might cause problems if the leads aren't thoroughly qualified. Concentrate your efforts on those who are a good fit for your solution. Focus on lead quality rather than quantity to improve the number of good chances in your pipeline. It's preferable to have a smaller number of high-quality leads than a large number of low-quality leads. Also, keep your expectations in check. Keep doing what's working for your company. If the solution is best suited for small firms, don't approach an eCommerce giant expecting to make a quick sale. There will always be opportunities to extend your consumer base but it is critical to keep your expectations realistic. Elevate the Average Deal Size A product is sold once its value matches or surpasses the price. Many times, a customer is willing to buy a product but they may not have enough money and sometimes the customer has money but they don't find that the value of the product matches the pricing so a seller needs to match that value and persuade the customer. Boosting average deal size can be explained as accurately as connecting value and pricing. When selling, one of your major concerns should be to focus on the customer's needs and pain points. Make each customer's presentation unique and deliver your solution in a way that demonstrates how it can satisfy their needs and alleviate their problems. Customers should regard you as a consultant who can assist them in finding a valued solution rather than a salesperson seeking to meet given targets. Also, make sure you're using your time wisely. Don't rush anyone through the process but give bigger opportunities with larger clients more time and consideration. You'll be able to devote more time to the deals that will have a bigger impact if you finish your smaller deals faster. Now it's time to start building and nurturing relationships. Building strong, mutually beneficial relationships with consumers will increase the average deal size significantly. CRM software makes this simple, allowing users to maintain customer connections and provide additional value to both buyers and sellers. Optimize Conversions Customers may leave your sales pipeline for a variety of reasons. Identifying why your consumers are or aren't buying is critical for optimizing your conversion rate, whether it's due to a rival or their lack of enthusiasm to address a problem. Ensure that you undertake a thorough sales discovery at the onset of your relationship with the consumer. Recognize why the customer is looking for a solution and position your company as the answer. Match each of their requirements to a feature of your solution. Remember to emphasize the risks of not jumping at the opportunity as well as the advantages of fixing the problem. Keep in mind that your sales process and the buyer’s journey are similar but not identical. Be patient with customers as they go through the process of making a purchase decision. Analyze your sales process to figure out where the customers are getting out of the deal. The problem might be that you need different lead qualification standards or that your representatives need more value demonstration practice. Find areas of struggle in your sales process, identify the problem and take action to resolve it. Reduce the Duration of the Sales Cycle Every transaction is unique and the amount of time you spend selling to each consumer will vary. Smaller and less established organizations can make faster judgments since they have fewer requirements and stakeholders to persuade. Understanding the size of a company and its desire to solve a problem will help you determine how soon you can sell to them. When a customer contacts you, don't be slow to answer. Reach out as soon as a lead has been qualified. If you're further along in the sales process and they're contacting you with concerns, make it a point to get them the information they need as soon as possible. Another strategy to shorten your sales cycle is to have ready-to-distribute material. Customers should have access to blogs, case studies, tutorials and product overviews. By avoiding any back-and-forth with queries and responses, you will save time. If you notice that your sales funnel is sluggish, it's usually because of this. Trust your instincts and respond as quickly as possible. Accelerate Growth with High Velocity Sales A full pipeline does not always imply a productive pipeline. Keep a close eye on sales velocity and the four major factors that influence it. Be careful to measure it on a regular basis and keep track of any changes. Conclusion: How Does Sales Velocity in eCommerce Help a Growing Business and How Can WareIQ Assist? Sales velocity in eCommerce is a helpful tool used by businesses to calculate their sales with respect to different timeframes and scrutinize the reoccurring problems faced by potential buyers. Creating a sale is not the most difficult part but mitigating customer difficulties through easy product delivery, branded packaging, calculating MOQ, etc. should be the real concern. In the process, most eCommerce companies get directly involved and waste their time and resources which reflects a failure in terms of sales velocity numbers (data). Comparatively, a lot of eCommerce companies are taking the help of 3PL fulfillment companies. WareIQ is one of the trustworthy fulfillment companies that promises to be a vital resource to their partners. In terms of the four factors that result in high velocity sales, here is how WareIQ can help with each one: Number of Opportunities(Qualified Leads) Our custom and highly advanced AI and ML-based WMS software have the following features: Deals immediately with your qualified leadsAnswers queries of confused buyers which persuades them to make a dealReduces the frequency of RTOs Average Deal Value A company looks for lifelong loyal buyers to increase sales velocity in eCommerce. Companies can do this by convincing users that they are getting the best deal possible We make this possible by providing the following: Hassle-free fulfillmentPersonalized customer experiencesBranded shippingEnabling high discounts Win/Conversion Rate Conversion rates are enhanced by increasing sales through different techniques, such as selling on multiple channels and running flash sales and campaigns. Here’s how WareIQ can help: Through our integrations with multiple platforms, sellers can keep track of all their data, across channels, in one place.We solve problems that buyers may face in real-time through our tracking pages, customer support etc.We entice customers by providing same-day and next-day delivery at lower shipping costs. Duration of Sales Cycle In the eCommerce market, delivery timing plays an important role in a sale. Customers are willing to pay more to get their delivery as soon as possible. WareIQ helps businesses by providing the following: Multiple warehouses in prime locations minimize the delivery time and ultimately, the sales cycle time.We give retailers access to more than 20 of the fastest courier services in the country and smartly allocate orders to the most relevant and cheapest option.We take care of order fulfillment, from the moment an order is confirmed till the time it is successfully delivered to the customer.We offer fulfillment 24/7 which reduces time for retailers as well as their customers. [signup] Sales Velocity in eCommerce - FAQs What does velocity mean in business?In business, velocity refers to the time it takes for a corporation to reach particular milestones, which can be measured in days, hours or minutes. It refers to the amount of work performed in a particular amount of time. Additionally, velocity may be used in various departments, including product or service development, sales and marketing. How do you increase sales velocity?You can increase sales velocity by:Increasing the number of opportunities for salesIncreasing the average deal sizeImproving your personal success rateReducing the time it takes for you to close a sale How to calculate sales velocity in eCommerce?Sales velocity is calculated by multiplying the number of opportunities created in a given period by your average selling price and close rate and then dividing it by your sales cycle, which is calculated over the same time period. What is lead velocity or lead velocity rate?The Lead Velocity Rate (LVR) is a metric that monitors the month-over-month growth in the number of qualified leads your company generates. Your LVR percentage is a measure of the efficiency of your pipeline and the long-term growth potential of your organization. What is SKU velocity?The frequency with which each SKU is picked over a given period of time is referred to as SKU velocity. It is a supply chain KPI that's often used to evaluate a logistics facility's stock distribution plan across multiple sites.
June 06, 2022
Why is eCommerce Order Tracking Important? Top 5 Tools for Tracking eCommerce Orders in 2022
Since eCommerce businesses rely on logistics companies to get their products into customers' hands, the logistics industry as a whole has been directly impacted. The logistics industry has expanded enormously as a result of the rise of the eCommerce sector, providing new technologies to help improve online shopping experiences. eCommerce order tracking is one such service that stands out in the world of eCommerce logistics. Advanced eCommerce order tracking software allows companies to track and manage their orders while they are in transit. This allows businesses to fix any issues that may arise during transit, as well as provide customers with information about the eCommerce order status of their goods. Today we will learn about every aspect of eCommerce order tracking and how it is beneficial to the eCommerce industry by ensuring customers can keep an eye on their orders as well as helping retailers understand if there are any errors or delays that have taken place. What is eCommerce Order Tracking? eCommerce order tracking is the process through which customers can track the eCommerce fulfillment status of their orders in real-time. It includes features like shipment tracking, Estimated Time of Arrival(ETA) and frequent updates on the location of the order. It plays an important role in enhancing the customer experience while product fulfillment, ETA and being notified of any delays, help a retailer track the product if they have opted for dropshipping, retail fulfillment, choosing a third-party logistics service or tracking reverse logistics during order fulfillment. [contactus_gynoveda] Top Factors that Affect eCommerce Tracking Order Lack of Technology eCommerce order tracking requires the use of advanced technology, mostly from the seller's end. A supply chain system must get updated at each stage and should reflect in the eCommerce order tracking page. Any failure of technology at any point will affect the entire process. A few points to note are: A buyer just needs to have a smartphone to access the eCommerce order status but a seller needs to have advanced software.A good website is required to check for pincode availability.An automated mail sender for sending order placement confirmation messages and emails with the order tracking IDs is needed.An order tracking tool is required such as a webpage.Human resources are required to handle and update it in case of any errors or glitches.An advanced software system is required to automate the entire eCommerce order tracking process.A dedicated customer care official to handle any related queries and issues is needed.A chatbot is needed to answer minor tracking-related queries in real-time. Shortage of Capital Investment A small eCommerce business with limited capital can barely afford to place MOQs and EOQs so they may also struggle to afford a decent eCommerce order tracking software. Developing an eCommerce order status system and keeping it connected with real-time logistics processes is a money-consuming task. It not only requires a huge one-time investment but also constant short term investment. Lack of Fulfillment Processes Fulfillment is a term that consists of various aspects that need to be taken into consideration and includes tasks such as transportation and logistics. Order fulfillment consists of eCommerce order status, proper inventory tracking, order information needed for picking the product from a particular warehouse, creating scan codes and tracking ID/number, ETA, etc. Lack of Expertise A supply chain runs 24/7 on high-end technology. It demands 100% accuracy and the shortest delivery time possible. For such tasks, retailers or their partners are required to be well-versed with technology as well as fieldwork expertise. Any mistake can ultimately result in a loss for a seller in terms of product damage and can create a bad image which ultimately results in poor feedback and buyer relinquishment. 5 Benefits of eCommerce Order Tracking Increases Customer Satisfaction With the eCommerce industry being so competitive, online shopping practically requires providing a good customer experience. If you don't want to lose business and seek to provide similar facilities to Amazon or other eCommerce giants, you must have an eCommerce order tracking system in place. Customers will notice if you don't provide the anticipated quality of service, putting your client loyalty at risk. Customers are more likely to write a positive review and re-buy from you in the future if you provide eCommerce order tracking to them. It not only gives them the most up-to-date information but also a sense that you care about their overall experience. Before reaching the customer, an order may pass through a post office or sorting facility after leaving a warehouse, 3PL fulfillment center or packing facility. Customers will be less confused if they are kept informed. Reduces Costs Engaging customers is a very tough task for a business. Many companies do numerous things to keep their customers engaged such as arranging quizzes, running campaigns and promoting their brands on social media, which costs them a lot of money. Customers want to be able to follow the progress of their orders. If you don't supply it, you'll almost certainly have to deal with hundreds of WISMO (where is my order) calls consumer complaints and inquiries, which will be quite expensive in the long run. It's a vital scenario; if you don't act quickly, your customer reviews will suffer. It can devalue the brand's image. The number of inquiry calls/messages will drop considerably if you provide order tracking to customers where all tracking information would be generated automatically. You may save effort, reduce the stress on your customer service team and focus on quality assurance by automating order fulfillment with order tracking. This will save you time and money, allowing you to spend it in other ways to improve client experiences. Controls Order Fulfillment Quality It enables eCommerce companies to deal with problems in real-time. The lifetime value of your consumers will rise when these basic solutions are provided. Also, many eCommerce sellers partner with third-party fulfillment providers for taking advantage of multiple warehouses at an optimum cost where they do not control logistics directly so with eCommerce order tracking, they can track their products when they are dispatched for fulfillment. Lowers Workload Expenses Whether you have a large customer service team or not, they will still benefit from automating eCommerce order tracking procedures. They might put this time saved to good use by providing personalised service to dissatisfied clients. Overall, your consumer experience becomes more smooth while maintaining a high level of quality. Helps in Tracking RTOs Order tracking benefits both eCommerce firms and their customers from a 360-degree perspective. This can also come in handy when dealing with a large number of RTO requests. Sellers can get an idea about which products and orders are being returned and from which locations, which can assist in the mitigation of RTO-related losses. Top Strategies to Get the Most Out of Tracking eCommerce Orders Utilize eCommerce Order Status Pages as a Means for Marketing eCommerce order tracking pages can be customized to tell customers about upcoming or existing flash sales, the introduction of new products, positive customer testimonials and ask them for valuable feedback. This increases the amount of time a customer spends on your page as opposed to your competitors' websites. Integrate Live Chatbots for Answering Tracking-Related Queries in Real-Time In today’s world, people are in the habit of two-way communication. They want to ask questions and get a reply to their queries immediately and most sellers do not have a customer support executive to handle these queries so Live Chat through bots comes to the rescue. If sellers facilitate a Live Chat customer support system, they will turn out to have a better customer experience with a more personalized touch. Show Buyers Your Appreciation During Every Purchase The tracking system will know when the product got delivered, so automate a thank you letter to show the buyer that you appreciate the purchase. Additionally, you can give extra discounts to the same customer for further purchases, based on terms and conditions. Collect as Much Data About the Order and the Customer as You Can Customer data can be a potential MQL (marketing qualified lead) for any seller. They know that the buyer might buy similar products or products related to their last purchase, in the future. Most eCommerce giants are spending billions on acquiring customer data by not only collecting it but also buying it because they know that it will help them to figure out and forecast according to customers’ preferences. Mention the ETA and Adjust it According to Delivery Forecasts When a buyer arrives at your page and sees your products’ availability on multiple eCommerce selling channels, they check if the delivery is serviceable to their address and what the ETA is. Providing an accurate ETA is helpful for both parties because the customer gets an expectation of when it will arrive and the seller has a target of when they need to deliver the order. Use Personalized Data for Future Campaigns Post completion of the delivery, the eCommerce order tracking page provides a confirmation of the delivery and can include a field for customers to provide their feedback or give ratings for the various services they have encountered. Honest feedback helps provide valuable insight into a buyer’s tastes and behaviours which can be used in marketing and promotional campaigns in the future. Top 5 Tools for eCommerce Order Tracking WareIQ Source Among the order tracking tools that are available, WareIQ is one the best and most trustable tracking tools for eCommerce orders and enables real-time tracking across India. WareIQ is a full-stack eCommerce fulfillment platform that provides superior order management services too. It enables order management, inventory management, returns management and a whole lot more as well as order tracking for online sellers and their customers, across multiple channels. It also utilizes a pan-India network of warehouses to enable same-day or next-day shipping to buyers. A few features of the fulfillment company are listed below: Manages order data, inventory levels, and billing from the same systemFulfillment of orders, as well as providing branded shippingReduces RTO rates through an RTO ShieldStores inventory in multiple- fulfillment centers across the countryHelps in ordering inventory according to EOQ and MOQQuick set up, scale-up and scale down according to seasonality, order velocity, and other factors It helps sellers to enable and utilize the facilities in three simple steps: Step 1 Suggests intelligent inventory placements. To recommend optimal inventory placement, it uses technology to analyse the order density, SKU velocity, seasonality and market trend by location. Step 2 Picks up your products and distribute them to their hubs from your central warehouse. They combine their platform with sellers' online storefronts and marketplaces. Step 3 Pick, Pack, and Ship; uses the same inventory to fulfill orders from the seller’s online marketplaces, and offers smart shipping where the fastest and cheapest courier service is always chosen to enable the fastest possible delivery at all times. WareIQ provides a full shipping journey and real-time order updates on the tracking page. It offers branded tracking page exclusively to its e-commerce clients to boost brand awareness, repeat customers & improve post-purchase engagement. Shippo Source Shippo is an integrated shipping partner for Gator Website Builder's eCommerce websites. It also works with Magento and WooCommerce, as well as Mercari, Etsy, eBay, and Amazon marketplace systems, as well as national postal services in some non-US nations. It offers drastically discounted fares on major domestic and international carriers. A few features are listed below: Order fulfillment and branded tracking updatesQuick returns and finding the best shipping ratesVendors can provide delivery updates to consumers via email and textCreation of branded tracking pages on the website ShipStation Source ShipStation is a comprehensive shipping tool that manages orders from major eCommerce channels, gets the cheapest prices from different carriers, keeps customers up to speed on order status, streamlines customer returns, records inventory and provides statistics. Marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart, Alibaba, Etsy, eBay, and Jet use Shipstation. Some of their features are: Is compatible with both WooCommerce and MagentoWorks with major shipping companies and provides low ratesAllows you to create a bespoke tracking system for mobile and desktop that displays to your consumers, where their order is and the ETA Shipway Source Shipway is an eCommerce automation tool that helps companies automate their order management and shipping processes. It employs artificial intelligence to automate and avoid fraud, as well as to assist businesses in executing deliveries smoothly. To maximize the chances of connecting with customers, the platform uses different methods to reach out to them. It works with over 12,000 brands and is integrated with over 600 carriers in local and international marketsMonitors about 200,000 orders per day and has sent out more than 500 million notices to dateAssists businesses in creating branded tracking pages for a better user experienceSends out real-time and periodic updates on the status of orders which results in reduced inquiry callsGenerates detailed reports on carrier performance and aids in the reduction of RTO rates ShipWell Source ShipWell is a transportation management solution that helps companies to keep track of their orders while they travel. ShipWell uses data from ELDs and mobile devices to provide real-time product tracking. The platform employs notifications to keep you updated on the status of your order while it's in transit. A managed service team is also available for high-quality client assistance on the platform. Ensures end-to-end visibility with native ELD connectors and the Shipwell Mobile appTracks and traces shipments on the platform, which has access to over 2 million ELD-connected units and 850,000 driversEliminates blind spots throughout the shipment lifecycleIdentifies potential risks so that they are taken care ofImproves customer service by streamlining carrier touch points Conclusion: What eCommerce Order Tracking Facilities Does WareIQ Provide? WareIQ helps you to enhance customer experience by allowing them to track their orders at every stage of fulfillment, including when they are received, packed, shipped, in transit, out for delivery and delivered. Even if an item is being returned, refunded, or exchanged, there will be reverse order tracking provided to both parties to mitigate any confusion. Online customers are notified real-time through all channels - email, WhatsApp, text messages etc. In addition, we offer the ability to customize your eCommerce order tracking page with product snippets, brand details and customer care information, so that users will stay engaged with your brand even after purchase. WareIQ's branded tracking page is an opportunity to turn your order tracking page into a profitable marketing channel, where you cross-sell & up-sell using marketing banners, logos, store links etc. [signup] eCommerce Order Tracking FAQs What is branded order tracking?A branded eCommerce order tracking page improves the post-purchase experience of customers by putting useful information through clear and customized content. What is eCommerce order tracking?Clients can track the eCommerce order status of their online orders in real-time with eCommerce order tracking technology. Expected delivery dates, shipment tracking and regular updates on the eCommerce order status are among the services it provides. Can I track a package with the order number?No. The order number and the tracking number are two separate numbers. Buyers can only track their packages using a tracking number; tracing a parcel using the order number is not feasible. How does product tracking work?In simple terms, monitoring a package or courier entails locating packages and containers, as well as other items, during the sorting and delivery process. This allows you to confirm their location and source, as well as get an estimated delivery date.
June 06, 2022
How to Re-Engage Online Customers Through a Branded Tracking Page in 10 Ways?
eCommerce as an industry relies heavily on customers and their feedback on your business. Focusing on producing a unique product and selling it at an appropriate price is hard enough for a retailer before needing to factor in how to target customers that would show the most interest in their products and would have the highest chances of converting potential interest into a confirmed sale and how to provide seamless order fulfillment and post-sales experience to them so that they’d be obligated to not only purchase from the same brand again but also give positive feedback and recommend it highly to others. Once retailers have figured out a strategic method to implement all these procedures, time needs to be dedicated to understanding how they can convert one-time purchase customers into repeat ones. One of the best ways to re-engage prior customers and entice current customers to keep purchasing from your business is to have an attractive branded tracking page. Read along to learn about the benefits and best practices of using a branded tracking page and how WareIQ can be of assistance. What is a Branded Tracking Page? A branded tracking page is a page where retailers and customers alike, can track the status of an order amongst all the order fulfillment processes that it needs to accomplish to ultimately be delivered successfully to the customer. The “branded” aspect of the tracking page refers to various customization options that can be implemented to make the page reflect a particular message or design language that a brand is trying to convey to its customers. Examples can be product suggestions, offer summaries and unique themes. The purpose of adding these elements, as opposed to just a static page with just the tracking details, is to try and entice the customer into purchasing another product or service and convey that the brand cares about presentation and customer experience, across the entire order fulfillment process, which will help them get a positive impression of the brand and could increase the chance of them becoming repeat customers. [contactus_uth] Why is it Important to Engage with Online Customers? It Helps to Enhance Customer Satisfaction Customers will appreciate engagement through factors like being redirected to a well-designed, easy to use branded tracking page, being asked for their feedback and if they were satisfied with the entire experience and will show their appreciation either with their wallets or through positive feedback. They will know that the brand actually cares about its image and it can be a big factor in how they perceive the overall purchase experience and whether they would choose to buy from you again or not. It Entices Customers to be Loyal to Your Brand Even though the eCommerce space is rife with competition selling similar products at similar prices, an easy way to differentiate yourself from the crowd is to have increased customer engagement. This will set apart your brand in their eyes and if they are satisfied enough, you may have a customer for life. A 10% increase in customer retention can increase revenue by 70% so it definitely pays in the long run. It Helps You Track Their Preferences Through Their Responses By engaging with customers, you can receive honest feedback, which may consist of bucketloads of praise but could also contain blunt criticisms. This will help you ascertain what processes work and what don’t and you can streamline the necessary procedures to mitigate those complaints. Similarly, you can double down on what customers like and appreciate so that you will continue to receive positive feedback. It Gives Your Brand a Positive Image Customers’ are sure to think highly of a brand if they make an honest effort to engage with them. It makes them feel like their experience really matters and so it should. They are the ones who vote with their money so it helps to keep all your customers happy and satisfied. Even if a customer has an issue, immediate engagement and steps to fix it instantly will help your brand’s image skyrocket. It Could Lead to Increased Sales Because of positive feedback and reviews from other customers or prior customers who have experienced your engagement first-hand, your brand will be able to generate more sales from people who appreciate efficient customer service. Few things are more annoying to a consumer who cannot find a solution to order-related problems or queries from the company that has sold it to them in the first place. This can be avoided by engaging online customers. It Helps to Maintain Interest in Your Brand If you consistently try engaging with online customers, whether they are prior or current ones, you will keep them reminded about your brand and all its positive aspects. It can be useful if you are trying to promote a product or an event, trying to generate buzz due to demand stagnation or even simply trying to get feedback from them to optimize business processes. 5 Must-Have Elements in Branded Tracking Page Customer Support Contact Details While a branded order tracking page may satisfy some customers about the status of their order, others may have other queries that they would like to contact you about. Make sure that you add details such as a phone number, email address and social media handles so that they can contact you and check out your feeds for exciting content at the same time. Banners of Complimentary Products With an appropriate 3PL company, you will be able to customize your branded order tracking page to your liking. This means that you can add banners of any product that you think is relevant, either based on customer preferences or what would be complementary to the ordered product, or products you would like to promote. This will increase the visibility of those products and could result in more sales. Status of the Order This is the primary piece of information that should be on your branded tracking page. You can make it look as fancy and promote as many products as you want but if the order cannot be tracked intuitively and clearly, customers will speak up. You should be sure to provide all the details of the order such as the placement date, dispatch date, ETA and other items. You can read about order fulfillment status in detail here. Logo of Your Company Presenting your logo front and center on your branded order tracking page reiterates to the customer which brand they are buying from. They don’t need to be bothered about the courier service or manufacturing company. This will ultimately prove to boost your brand image and stamp your logo in the minds of customers. Top 10 Benefits of Using Branded Tracking Page Appreciation by Customers Customers pay attention to the finer details, especially in the eCommerce industry with a large number of firms offering similar products and overall experiences. Something as simple as an intuitive and well-designed branded order tracking page with concisely laid out information and representing the ethos of the brand can make the whole experience feel special and can result in occupying real estate in the minds of customers. Access to Free Advertising You can design your branded tracking page any way you want, including adding popups and links to your other products and services. In addition, you can add snippets for offers you are running, new products you may be launching in the future and promotion of your brand in general, all without spending an extra dime on advertising. Leads to Tertiary Purchases As a result of the point above, you may receive tertiary purchases from customers who browsed your branded order tracking page, found something they liked and placed an additional order. The same process can be repeated on the branded tracking page of that order and can keep on going until they figure that they’ve had enough online shopping for one season. Assists in Post-Purchase Engagement Oftentimes, customers are left neglected between the time they purchase their order and the time they receive it. Branded order tracking pages can be a way of engaging with them after they have spent their money, which makes them feel special and that they're getting a comprehensive customer service experience, which will add brownie points to their feedback and reviews, if and when they decide to give it. Conveys Your Brand Message Your branded tracking page has the potential to be a window for customers to instantly learn more about your brand if they weren't aware of it already. You can choose to present your brand on your terms and convey any message that you desire, knowing that they will constantly be checking the page until their order arrives. This will give your brand a good amount of recognition on a personal level. Mitigates Confusion About the Order Status Customers often get anxious after placing an online order if they don’t know where it is or how long it’s going to take. A branded tracking page will mitigate that confusion and will give them easy access to check where it is on the go and clear any query directly from the page itself which will give them peace of mind and reduce the number of calls that your businesses receive from agitated customers who don’t know where their order is. Reduces Buyers Remorse On many occasions, especially after placing an order from a small or mid-sized company with not much brand recognition, customers feel a sense of buyer’s remorse because they don’t feel assured about the quality of the product or the brand. One way to provide this assurance before they receive their product is to give them access to an efficient and well-designed branded tracking page. They will instantly feel gratified knowing that your company means business and that their money is in the right hands. Reduces Time Spent on Dealing with Agitated Customers Since customers will always be aware of the status of their order and which fulfillment process it is currently in, in real-time, they would not feel the need to frantically try and get in touch with you to get this information. In turn, this puts less stress on your customer care team who can spend time personally handling cases where errors or mishaps have actually occurred and can focus on coming up with a solution as soon as possible. Enhances the Overall Purchase Experience If a retailer can provide a stellar customer experience post-sale, in addition to providing a product that the customer needs, it is definitely a recipe for success and repeat customers. Taking care of every aspect of a customer’s experience with your company and making sure that they are never left wanting, is a sure-fire way of skyrocketing your brand image in the eyes of that customer and other customers who read their glowing reviews about their brilliant experience. Conclusion: How WareIQ Helps eCommerce Businesses Engage Their Customers Through a Branded Tracking Page? Now that we have learned the many benefits and touchpoints of utilising branded tracking pages, you need to assess if your business requires them or not. Generally, businesses that are expanding rapidly or who are just trying to provide a professional experience to customers, in addition to standard order fulfillment processes, would be best suited to making use of branded tracking pages. Luckily, if you fall into the above categories, you don’t need to look any further. WareIQ has got you covered. In addition to providing all the above features and more, WareIQ provides a whole range of order fulfillment and eCommerce warehousing related services to assist any requirement that your company may have in terms of inbound and outbound logistics operations. With respect to branded tracking pages, we offer the following services: Customizable Tracking URL You can insert a customizable tracking link that redirects customers to your website or any page that you desire so that no click or tap goes to waste. Marketable Product Placements With our customization options, you can turn your branded tracking page into a mini eCommerce store, complete with product descriptions, images and options to buy them. This will help customers spend more time browsing through your products, as opposed to a competitor’s. Insert Links to Your Store You can add multiple links to take customers wherever you think would make a difference. Whether it is to your website homepage, your social media handles or your eCommerce selling profiles, you can be assured that customers will only be directed to where you want them to go. Updates in Real-Time Our branded tracking page provides customers and retailers updates to each and every metric of the order fulfillment process, such as location, ETA and stage in the delivery process in real-time so neither you nor they will ever be left wondering about where the order is. Receive Customer Feedback You can add fields for customers to leave valuable feedback so that you can better gauge their tastes and preferences and how to improve and refine your products and services. This will not only help you to retain customers but will assist you in streamlining the process to find new ones. [signup] Branded Tracking Page: FAQs What is branded order tracking?Branded order tracking is a means by which customers can track their order but also browse through other fields such as product banners, information about the brand and links to social media handles, which helps a customer spend more time scrolling through the relevant company's pages rather than a competitor's page. What technology do you need to offer branded tracking?If you partner with a 3PL company, they will generally equip you with the software needed to provide branded tracking. What kind of companies are best suited to offering branded order tracking?Companies that are trying to expand at a rapid pace, companies that want customers to spend more time scrolling through their pages and companies that are trying to convey a strong image of their brand to customers as well as companies that are trying to offer a streamlined post-purchase experience to customers are all suited towards offering branded tracking. What happens if you don't order branded tracking?Generally, if a customer can only track their orders through a mundane interface, they will not seek to find out more about the company, its other products and services and may close the page after a couple of minutes as opposed to spending a much larger amount of time on a branded tracking page. This can contribute to an average customer experience that won't stand out and diminishes your chances of getting repeat customers. How can you offer branded tracking with WareIQ?If you choose to partner with WareIQ, you will get access to a whole bunch of features that you can choose to take advantage of, including branded shipping.
June 06, 2022
What is Inventory Management? Objectives, Challenges, Importance & 10 Benefits of Implementing Inventory Management
It's critical to assess your company on a frequent basis to verify that you're on the right route. Inventory management or Stock management is among the most important aspects of any company. How has inventory management worked out for your online business? Ever had the proper stock levels when you needed them? Ever lost sales because an item was out of stock? Or did you lose money because you had too much inventory? Address these questions to yourself and in the end, you will be having answers and solutions for your queries. We also got you covered over some standard practices for managing inventory in this article, as well as fundamentals of inventory management strategies. What is Inventory Management? There are many different meanings of inventory. Some people define inventory as the total value of all the things used in your firm. This encompasses anything to do with your business operations, such as business supplies and the security of the products. We feel that thinking of inventory as the total of all products utilized in your business that are meant for sale is more beneficial. This entails examining all of the components that go into producing your goods. Materials directly tied to your manufacturing process include both goods that are ready to sell and items that you plan to sell in the future. Inventory management, in its most basic form, is the management of your industrial inventory, often known as product inventory. These are all of the supplies and materials in your warehouse or storage area that are intended for product manufacture. Only things ready to sell, or merchandise inventory, are kept in the inventories of retailers and wholesalers. However, before going into the intricacies, it's always a good idea to brush up on the basics or you might end up following others like a blind sheep if you don't. In this scenario, we need to know not just what inventory is, but also what the goals and objectives of good inventory management for small businesses are. Read our blog on perpetual inventory system to know more about the methods, benefits & how perpetual inventory is different from periodic inventory systems. [contactus_uth] What are the Different Types of Inventory to be Managed? While handling and controlling stock, a corporation may encounter a variety of various forms of inventory. All of these concepts are crucial to grasp to achieve successful inventory management. When it comes to the things that a company could sell, there are seven different types of inventory- Raw Materials Any goods utilized to make completed products or the separate components that go into them are referred to as raw materials. These can be manufactured or sourced by a company, or they can be acquired from a vendor. Work-in-progress (WIP) Inventory Retailers who make their items have work-in-progress (WIP) inventory. These are unfinished or in-progress goods or components that are not yet available for sale. Finished Goods The term "finished goods" refers to things that are finished and ready to sell. These might have been produced in-house or obtained as a complete, finished product from a vendor. Most shops will either buy entire, finished items from a provider or commission a third-party to create unique products for them. As a result, finished items are frequently (but not always) one of the few forms of inventory that require attention in retail inventory management. Safety Stock Safety stock is an important inventory categorization that allows producers to maintain planned output levels in the event of an emergency. This sort of inventory is simply a stretch surplus of anything required to finish the manufacture of some or all products, such as raw materials, parts, products, and any other necessary items. The purpose of safety stock is to guarantee that firms do not experience any production disruptions that result in incomplete items or idle industrial machines. Any substantial delays in finishing and distributing items might result in a drop in income as well as a loss of customer confidence. The amount of safety stock inventory required will be specific to the items being created, as well as the anticipated demand and supply of the product. Ready to Sell Inventory Ready-for-sale inventory products are finished goods that are sitting in warehouses waiting to be dispatched to merchants. This is the amount of ready-to-sell inventory held by a manufacturer or retail warehouse. Nothing prevents these things from being processed, packaged, and dispatched to merchants or straight to customers from the warehouse. Anticipation Inventory Anticipation inventory refers to things that are only available at certain periods of the year. Retailers and manufacturers alike must keep a close watch on forthcoming seasons and inventory levels. Packaging Materials Everything needed for packaging and delivering items is the final category of inventory that merchants and manufacturers alike cannot disregard. Pallets, shrink wrap, wooden boards and planks, nails, and everything else needed to properly deliver items to merchants fall under this category for manufacturers. Bubble Wrap, Styrofoam peanuts, and other cushioning materials, as well as a range of boxes and adhesives, are available to online merchants and retailers who offer delivery. Objectives Of Inventory Management Objectives of Inventory Management should be both operational and financial. In terms of operations, stored items should be accessible in appropriate quantities, and working capital should be kept to a minimum. The following are some of the most important objectives of inventory management - Processing The Orders If you don't know how much stock you have at your hand, you won't be able to meet a received order. To fulfill or fulfill you must have the appropriate items on hand at all times. Otherwise, directives may throw you into disarray. Assume you're selling apparel and you've gotten an order for 500 men's denim jeans, but there are only 300 pieces of denim available at the warehouse when you checked out. If the order is received without knowing the stock level at the warehouse, then the chaos will follow. An inventory management system should be utilized to avoid this, and team members should be aware of the inventory level. Having An Adequate Supplies Inventory should be conveniently stocked in advance, from raw materials to completed goods. You should provide enough of the essential material to ensure that items are not harmed when a client requires them. Supply tracking ensures that goods are available to fulfill client demands. It also allows for the shaping of demand depending on the available supply. After you have adequate supply to match client demand, you create specific targets based on customer demand. Stock Management To make things go more smoothly, you'll need a thorough inventory record. This approach allows you to keep track of your inventory and stops you from making mistakes like duplicating orders or maintaining the wrong quantity of inventory on hand. Situations of overstock or understock should always be considered. We already know that understocking may lead to shortages and disrupt the ordering process, but overstocking is just as dangerous. Assume you're working with perishable goods and have an excess of them. Perhaps you plan to keep such stockpiles on hand as a backup in case of higher-than-usual demand. However, holding an excessive amount of stocks may create more problems than not being able to satisfy the actual supply and demand. Also holding stocks for too long can spoil the quality of products and may cost you money. Minimizing Expenses The basic objective of inventory management is to save expenses as much as possible. To be financially secure, you should reduce superfluous capital. After all, money is a critical restriction. To lower manufacturing costs, you should restrict your investment to a minimum and keep material costs under control. If the things don't sell, your assets might become liabilities overnight. As a result, one of the objectives is to guarantee that you do not lose money as a result of holding inventory. Items should be used while their original worth is still intact. Working capital should be kept to a minimum because it is also required for other activities like operations and sales. When you manage your inventory well, you can avoid extra expenses. Dealing With Losses When it comes to coping with losses, managing inventory effectively helps to a great extent. When there is no effective tracking system in place, items are prone to be squandered or misplaced. Besides, no matter what sort of employment you conduct, theft is always a danger worth addressing. Keeping a record of the things reduces, but does not eliminate, the risk of loss. Having a record on hand eliminates potential waste and protects your firm from theft. Such dangers are heightened in situations when large quantities of items must be handled. As a result, an inventory management system is a lifesaver when it comes to keeping track of everything and minimizing any losses. Strengthening Production Managing your inventory benefits productivity in a variety of ways. When you want to update something in the manufacturing process, having an inventory system makes it easier. If you wish to grow or downsize your production, look at your tracking system and determine how to lead it. Furthermore, inventory systems assist manufacturing in running smoothly by assuring an effective supply. Production doesn't have to be reformed again if you retain your records and have enough supplies. Product Sales Optimization Analyzing product sales patterns is another thing you can do with stock management. The phase of sales is crucial to the entire operation. It aids in the comprehension of the existing situation and the formulation of future assumptions based on the analysis. For example - s Sluggish items can be detected and eliminated. Assume you're in the business of selling jewelry. Some of your items aren't performing well in the marketplace. The sales aren't going as planned, and they're all sitting on the shelf. Keeping things that are no longer in demand does not appear to be a wise idea. In that scenario, you may lower the pricing to sell them, or you can find another means to sell them. Challenges Faced In Inventory Management Every physical product selling firm requires inventory management. Given the volatile nature of the business, managing inventory becomes extremely difficult. A competeCompetentng software may assist you in resolving a variety of issues, including inventory reorder limits, excess inventory storage costs, and many more, which we will go over in further detail later. The following are the most common issues encountered during stock management. Unpredictable Tracking Using manual management procedures across a variety of programming and accounting pages is time-consuming, repetitious, and impotent in the face of errors. Even small businesses can benefit from a solid stock global positioning strategy that includes accounting features. Because of the uncertain monitoring and invisibility of stock, more than 33% of enterprises will miss a shipment deadline, as they sold an item that wasn't truly in stock. For a large percentage of businesses, inadequate visibility is a difficult issue to deal with when it comes to inventory management processes, and the results may be disastrous. Improving data collection and analytics by improving your procedures, software, and equipment as part of a warehouse management services helps solve inventory and supply chain concerns. Transparency The finest companies will include transparency in their satisfaction to guarantee that reps and clients are aware of what is going on. Request difficulties can occur in any circumstance, even with the special challenges of inventory management in internet purchases. If your client is aware of the delays, they may adjust their expectations and be certain that their item will arrive in the end. Your success depends on your ability to communicate and be honest. This includes informing the client that the second item they are waiting for returns stock. Poor Operational Processes At the distribution center, inventory management controls are escalated actions that include getting and putting away, picking, pressing, and transportation. The goal is to do each of these tasks in the most efficient manner possible. Inefficient Software Inventory management programming must combine your present company measure stages to scale to support complicated coordinations. Various arrangements and a big group of highlights requiring preparation and progress help are perusing many demand and supply management arrangements and dominating a large number of highlights requiring preparation and progress support Businesses count specific items in the stockroom rather than totalling the entire stock at once. Cycling calculating is a method of fact-checking. The computation of individual things serves as a type of lens through which the rest of the stockroom may be viewed. You'll probably see similar inaccuracies in various zones if your stock is wrong in the cycle tallies. Similarly, if your store's cycle checks verify it's accurate, you'll have accurate tallies. Keeping Track Of Warehouse Space Managing space effectively is a daunting task. You may better control the situation of new stock conveyances by arranging and organizing stockroom spaces using inventory management stages. It can represent important elements such as available spaces. Collaboration Between Workers One of the most common challenges in inventory management is labor cooperation. To guarantee that their eCommerce warehousing process is executed correctly, communication and teamwork are essential. When departments are averse to sharing information, it's far more difficult to discover inventory patterns and find ways to improve. Employees cannot be informed about tasks, requirements, progress, or work condition if information flow is delayed and disturbed. As a result, firms will face warehouse-related problems. Production Scheduling Production planning is critical for reducing production costs and delays. Businesses must summarise their production results each month, identify the problem and its remedy, and set objectives for the next month. Based on the solution and monthly KPIs, they generate detailed production plans. It may have an impact on sales predictions and project timelines if not done appropriately. Importance of Inventory Management Inventory Management is an important part of supply chain management, which is the process of keeping track of inventory levels and goods flow, whether it's providing raw materials to manufacturers or satisfying orders for finished items. Inventory management is a critical component of a company's long-term success, as it helps them save expenses, enhance cash flow, and increase profits. The balance of your supply chain will fall into place once your inventory is correctly arranged. Mis-shipments, shortages, out-of-stocks, spoiling (when dealing with vulnerable inventory stock), excess stock, incorrect pick-ups, and other mistakes are all possible without an effective inventory management system. Small business owners still don't track their inventory, and supply chain accuracy in U.S. retail operations is just 60 percent on average, implying that many merchants aren't productively managing their inventory. An Inventory Management system, unlike an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, concentrates on a single supply chain operation. It can link with other software systems, such as POS (point of sale), multi channel sales management, and branded shipping, allowing you to create a customized integration stack to match your business's particular requirements. 10 Benefits Of Efficient Inventory Management Increased Competitiveness in the Market Inventory control is aided by utilizing efficient ways of managing inventory. In establishing a business's competitive strength, criteria such as commonalities with values, high factor loadings values, and substantial mean values are taken into account. These reasons unquestionably highlight the necessity of inventory management and control, which increases market competitiveness. Improved Service Quality due to Lesser Lead Time It's still true that managing inventory efficiently leads to repetitive customers, which is something that every firm strives for. If you want your loyal customers to keep coming back to buy your products and services, you must always enhance your service quality so that you can quickly respond to their requests. Inventory management and control assist businesses in fulfilling such demands by allowing you to give the appropriate levels of hands-on service as soon as your clients request it with an acceptable lead time which ultimately emphasizes the necessity of quality stock management. Reduced Storage Costs The advantages include concentrating on inventory planning and lowering storage costs while maintaining enough stockpiles. By adopting proper inventory management and control, the factor minimizes storage costs and boosts income, emphasizing the necessity of managing inventory levels. Efficient inventory management help avoid excess stocks or stockouts. Revenue Growth Inventory planning may be used to bridge the gap between increasing revenues and lower costs in any firm. A company's profitability may be increased by using efficient inventory management and control. If a company ignores the advantages of managing its inventory in its trade, sales, and manufacturing, it may find it difficult to maximize its operational efficiency. The cost of procurement and manufacturing of inventory has a significant impact on gross profit. A company's gross profit can be increased by lowering its manufacturing costs. As a result, appropriate inventory planning is necessary. And, with all things equal, such a corporation would report more revenues, which in turn leads to higher profitability, demonstrating the necessity of inventory management once more. Better Utilisation of Warehouse Space Proper management and control entail keeping track of all commodities produced, purchased, and sold to fulfill consumer demand. These inventory management advantages have an impact on the management approach that helps an organization's warehouse achieve better space management. It will always be tough to manage your inventory successfully if your warehouse is disorganized. Several firms choose to improve their fulfillment centers by grouping higher-selling items in conveniently accessible sections within the warehouse. This procedure helps to expedite order fulfillment while also ensuring client satisfaction. Simplified Cost Accounting Tasks Due to Inventory Control Better inventory management will undoubtedly land you in better financial situations. Internal plans and measurements are frequently developed by business owners to provide better management and planning of production and sales. Such approaches connect every participant in the firm, including managers, to providing actions that make accounting activities easier. Typically, these tactics assist industries in order, accounting for inventory values, maintaining inventory flow, and assisting in the control of stocks. Several organizations may effectively control their cash flow by using such approaches in inventory planning. Safety And Environmental Considerations When employees strain to walk on the shop floor, can't move things easily, and tumble off the shelves, having too much inventory in the warehouse can be a health and safety hazard. Efficient stock management results in less packing, which results in less waste generation and helps the environment. This is one of the strongest reasons to emphasize the necessity of inventory management. Increased Customer Confidence With improved methods in place, any business may employ inventory planning and management to boost cash flow by delivering better customer service at consistent prices. Small businesses may use an inventory control and planning tool to learn which goods sell well than others. They will be able to change their product range and make informed business decisions as a result of this phase. Better Human and Equipment Utilization If steps to control and manage inventory are properly implemented, it saves time in terms of human resources and equipment consumption. Less time spent maintaining inventory translates to improved productivity for both your company and your clients. With these advantages, your company will always be one step ahead of the competition and will always have adequate items on hand depending on inventory movements. Improved Product Quality Inventory management and control may help improve corporate efficiency and product quality significantly. These advantages help to reduce waste and improve emphasis on creating quality managing processes. It is undeniable that having an effective inventory management system leads to greater success and repeat customers. If you want your loyal clients to keep coming back, you must improve the quality of your products in every manner imaginable. 7 Step By Step Processes To Implement Inventory Management Examine Your Budget The ABC of inventory process management, the only basis of this approach, is planning and attentively monitoring your budget, as mainstream and widespread as it may appear. It is equally important since it dictates the breadth of your inventory management and the amount of raw inventory you can afford to spend. This can be accomplished in one of two ways: The first is manual budgeting and activity-based costing (ABC costing), which identifies and assigns a cost to raw materials so that you may plan. The second method is to use budgeting software that is specifically designed for this purpose. You may use it to automate this procedure and have the software assist you in managing your money more efficiently. Make a Warehousing Plan After analyzing your budget, the next step is to choose a place. Because some organizations have many sites, the warehouse where your items will be stored and await transportation is critical. It's also critical to choose the right storage for your merchandise. Different industries and raw materials necessitate different warehouse types. As a consequence, thinking about it ahead of time might save you a lot of trouble. The sort of warehouse determines where your high-demand raw materials go, how often they're carried and shipped, and how much lead time you can provide your customers. You'll be able to manage products and reduce logistics costs once you've chosen a facility or third party logistics partner. This can be done manually or with the help of an inventory management solution. You'll be able to automate activities and make the process of shifting merchandise between various types of warehouses or organizing it in a precise sequence much easier with the latter. Whether you're a small, mid-sized, or large business, using Inventory Management software will be less time-consuming and cost-effective than doing it manually. You'd be able to use it to automatically transfer items from one facility to another and rigorously control the present status of your products. Make a Preliminary Order List Create a preliminary order list based on the past level of demand for your items. This is critical since you'll be able to predict when a piece of your supply will be gone and act quickly to avert such disasters. You'll also find it easier to create cycle counting if you use this method. You should be able to start using the Inventory Management program once you've figured out the budget, the location, and the most critical items. Select and Implement The Appropriate Software Picking the proper tool for you can be a difficult undertaking, thus this is the phase where you should spend the most attention. With each passing day, it becomes increasingly difficult to pick inventory management software due to the plethora of products on the market. As a result, when selecting it, you should consider the following measures: Decide On A Pricing Range To Work With Remember what we discussed in the budgeting portion earlier? This is where it comes in handy: there are a lot of wonderful alternatives on the market, but the best one for you will be determined by your price constraints. As a result, you should have a pricing range in mind that you can use to limit your search. Recognize Your True Requirements Before you install software, you should know what you'll be utilizing it for. Different instruments on the market can meet a variety of demands and desires Are you planning to utilize it to create personalized product pricing? Do you want it to generate forecasts based on current stock levels? Or to keep track of orders and monitor every action in your warehouse? You must answer these questions before deciding on an integration option, since the objective may have a direct impact on the tool's efficiency. Determine Specific Integrations You'll Require It's critical to select a system that you can combine with your existing apps and tools. Otherwise, you'll have to manually enter all of this information, which will result in data time delays and data loss, negating the value of acquiring an inventory management system. As a result, you should be aware that different inventory management software products are appropriate for different circumstances - are you utilizing an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, or something else? So, your choice is strongly reliant on these systems and their ability to work together. Taking these actions before entering into the deep area of inventory management, you'll be able to assess your internal demands and determine what you need to accomplish. However, as previously indicated, deploying such software might be pricey. As a result, even while analyzing the budget, keep in mind that, while it is an exceptionally advantageous option, it may not be appropriate for all small or mid-sized businesses. You may think of automation software as a supplemental service and do keep these factors in mind. 10 Best Practices Of Inventory Management for Small Businesses The most important strategies for efficiently managing your inventory for greater profitability and cash flow management- Make A List Of Your Inventory's Top Priorities Organizing your inventory into priority categories will help you figure out which things you need to purchase more of and more regularly, as well as which are critical to your business but may be more expensive and take longer to move. Experts recommend categorizing your inventory into three categories: A, B, and C. The A category consists of higher-ticket things that you will need less of. Low-cost products with a high turnover rate fall into the C category. The B group consists of things that are modestly priced and move out the door slower than C items but faster than A items. Keep Track of All Product Details Keep track of the product details for each item in your inventory. SKUs, barcode data, suppliers, countries of origin, and lot numbers should all be included in this information. You might also want to keep track of the pricing of each item over time so you're aware of things like scarcity and seasonality that might affect the price. Examine Your Stock Once a year, some firms do a complete count. Others do spot inspections on their most popular goods on a monthly, weekly, or even daily basis. Many people engage in all of the aforementioned activities. Make it a habit to physically count your inventory regularly, regardless of how often you do it. Examine the Performance of Your Suppliers Your inventory may be harmed by an unreliable supplier. It's time to take action if your supplier is consistently late with deliveries or consistently under-delivers an order. Talk to your provider about the difficulties and figure out what's wrong. Prepare to change business partners or cope with erratic supply levels and the risk of running out of goods as a result. Follow the 80/20 Rule When it Comes to Inventories Generally speaking, 20% of your stock accounts for 80% of your profits. Make inventory management of this 20% of products a top priority. You should be aware of the whole sales lifetime of these things, as well as how many you sell in a week or month, and keep a constant eye on them. These are the goods that bring you the most money; don't let them go to waste. Maintain a Consistent Approach to Receiving Stock It may seem obvious to ensure that incoming inventory is handled, but do you have a standard procedure that everyone follows, or does each person that receives and processes new stock do it in their unique way? Small inconsistencies in the way new stock is received may leave you scratching your head at the end of the month or year, unsure why your figures don't match your purchase orders. Ensure that all employees who receive goods do so in the same manner and that all boxes are confirmed, received, and unpacked together, tallied precisely, and checked for correctness. Keep Track of Your Sales This may appear to be a no-brainer, but it entails more than simply totaling up revenues at the end of the day. You should know what things you sold and how many of them, and you should keep track of your inventory totals. But you'll also need to study this information. You should know when particular goods sell quicker or when they become obsolete. Is it a one-time thing or do you sell certain things on a given day of the week? Is it true that certain things usually always sell together? If you can answer these questions, you are on track to know your sales in your business. To keep your inventory under control, you must understand not only your sales totals but also the bigger picture of how goods sell. Order Restocks on Your Own Some suppliers provide inventory reordering services. On the surface, this appears to be a positive thing: you save money and time by delegating the procedure for at least a few of your products to someone else. However, keep in mind that your vendors may not have the same goals as you. They want to shift their inventory, but you want to stock the most profitable things for your company. Take the time to inspect inventory and place reorders for all of your goods. Invest in Inventory Management Software It's possible to manage the first eight items on this list manually, using spreadsheets and notes, if your company is small enough. However, if your firm expands, you'll need to spend more time on inventory than on your business, or risk having too much stock. All of these activities are made simpler by good inventory management software. Before you pick a software solution, make sure you know what you're looking for, that it has the metrics you need, and that it's simple to use. Use Technology That is Easy to Incorporate Inventory management software isn't the only tool you can use to keep track of your supplies. Mobile scanners and POS systems can assist you in staying on schedule. Prioritize systems that function together when investing in technology. It's not the end of the world if your POS system can't interact with your inventory management software, but it might cost you time to move data from one system to another, making it easy to wind up with wrong inventory counts. Conclusion Regardless of the size of your company, inventory management is essential. It reduces losses, storage expenses, and stock-outs for the firm. These technologies enable you to successfully manage various sites while maintaining accurate records. By recording everything methodically and quickly, an inventory solution saves you time and money; moreover, this strategy promotes customer happiness by eliminating errors along the route and providing them with the best possible experience. Better customer interactions lead to more successful businesses. As a result, inventory management systems have a significant and favorable impact on overall performance. You can start improving your inventory by finding the correct tool for your firm. WareIQ's proprietary network & inventory planning product helps companies achieve 80% regional utilization while reducing holding costs by 30%. At WareIQ, our professionals are dedicated to enabling same/next day delivery for eCommerce & online D2C brands. All of your sales channels are integrated into our dashboard. In addition, we have inventory management knowledge on the ground. WareIQ assists in determining the best stock levels. That is the most effective strategy to avoid running out of stock. Setting ideal inventory levels can also help you save money by reducing the amount of money you have invested in your items. [signup] Frequently Asked Questions What is the main goal of inventory control?Inventory management's main goal is to guarantee that there are enough items or resources on hand to fulfil demand without producing overstock, or surplus inventory. Isn't using spreadsheets to manage inventories a smart idea?Spreadsheets are ineffective inventory management tools because they must be manually updated, which takes time and results in data that is frequently out of sync. Spreadsheets also don't scale with your business, don't interact with your POS, and don't show you how well your things sell. How does WareIQ's fulfillment platform help in inventory planning and management?WareIQ's fulfillment platform has an ML (machine learning) based prediction engine that results in smart inventory placement. It helps in Inventory forecasting, identifying purchase trends, estimating purchase orders, and optimizing stock for multiple warehouses. What are the objectives of effective inventory managementInventory management's purpose is to keep inventory levels as low as feasible while yet having enough items on hand to fulfill consumer demand. What are the primary benefits of managing inventory?Spend less money on management operations. The most fundamental benefit of inventory management is that it saves firm money. Inventory is frequently a company's most valuable asset. Inventory is also costly to buy, placing a firm in the red until those things are sold for a profit. What is eCommerce inventory management?Ecommerce inventory management is a technique that assists merchants in growing their business in all areas. Business owners may use the technology to optimize warehouse operations and make better financial decisions. Everything else comes into place once you know how much inventory you have.
June 04, 2022
Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Detailed Comparison to Help You Choose the Right 3PL Fulfillment Company
The eCommerce industry has taken the world by storm and this trend has been amplified in India’s already fast-growing economy. eCommerce retailers need to constantly find ways to improve their services, adapt to the latest trends and adopt advanced technological solutions to provide the best possible experience to their customers and differentiate themselves from their competitors. This is where 3PL fulfillment companies can tremendously help online sellers step up their game and provides access to resources and technology that they made not have had before. Of course, quality facilities come at a cost and retailers need to find a balance between obtaining help to the facilities they require and finding a cost-effective solution that won't break the bank. Let's compare 3 of the leading 3PL fulfillment companies in the business, Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ, and find out which one strikes the best balance between provision of the best facilities and technology and competitive pricing. What are the Main Challenges Faced by eCommerce Retailers? COD As Preferred Payment Option This is a problem specifically faced by Indian eCommerce retailers as there are large swathes of the country, especially in remote rural areas, that don’t have access to credit cards and online payments such as UPIs. Their preferred method of payment is cash, which can be a hassle for eCommerce retailers to collect as the payments become susceptible to theft, and perishability and requires the delivery partner to collect them. Low Internet Penetration Due to a large number of people living in rural areas, it becomes quite difficult for eCommerce firms and their 3PL fulfillment partners to implement cutting-edge technologically advanced facilities due to a lack of mobile and internet infrastructure. Many regions also suffer from poor connectivity. This is improving at a rapid pace but should be taken into consideration as it still impacts retailers in the current day and age. High Product Returns Rate Since India is a rapidly growing economy, there is a significant portion of the population that are still getting accustomed to eCommerce retail and online shopping. This means that they don’t know what to expect when they order products and when it finally arrives at their doorstep, it may not meet their expectations. Thus, due to the relatively relaxed return policies of many eCommerce retailers, they are able to return the product, either for an exchange or to get their money back because they suffer from buyer remorse. These returns increase logistical costs for eCommerce girls and have a massively negative impact on their profit margins. Incorrect Delivery Addresses This is a very big challenge for eCommerce companies as a large portion of delays and unfulfilled orders come from delivery addresses not being provided correctly. Since India is a large and geographically diverse country with challenging infrastructure, wrongly entered delivery addresses can add a significant amount of time and money to each order that is affected by this. Lack of Proper Infrastructure India is improving every day in this regard but still has a large amount of unpaved and pothole-ridden roads, inadequate signage and heavy traffic, consisting of large trucks, bullercarts and everything in between. This can cause delays and result in time and money being lost, in addition to customers being dissatisfied because their orders didn’t get delivered on time. Even in urban areas, the infrastructure is not much better and this can have a significant impact on the efficiency of your fulfillment services. Lack of Security This is one of the most important challenges to tackle for eCommerce businesses and their fulfillment partners as they seek to deliver goods to customers in the best possible condition to avoid negative feedback and dissatisfaction. Security risks include pillaging of goods in transit, accidents due to poor infrastructure, theft and a lot more. Fulfillment companies need to invest significant resources to mitigate such risks as they can have dire consequences for the business. Complex Logistics and Supply Chain Processes In order for eCommerce retailers to compete with their rivals, they must seek to sell their products on as many channels and platforms as possible. Managing one channel is hard but managing multiple channels can be an unforgiving task even for experienced retailers. Partnering with 3PL fulfillment companies can mitigate these complex processes by providing access to advanced technology and software solutions that are able to chalk out the simplest and most cost-effective method that processes can be done. [contactus_lilgoodness] 6 Ways eCommerce Fulfillment Companies Can Provide Solutions to These Problems Increasing Order Fulfillment Speeds With the advent of same-day, next-day and even 10-minute delivery services, customers are spoiled for choice and anything less could cause major dissatisfaction. 3PL fulfillment companies such as WareIQ provide all of these services, in the most efficient and cost-effective way, devoid of any hassle to eCommerce businesses who partner with them. This allows retailers to stay competitive and ensure that their customers are receiving industry-leading standards when it comes to the speed at which they receive their orders. Providing Warehousing Facilities and Fulfillment Centers Warehousing facilities are of the utmost importance for small to mid-sized businesses that do not have access to storage facilities and who also have limited budgets. 3PL fulfillment companies provide a solution by providing a nationwide network of warehouses and fulfillment centers, that are equipped with all the latest technology and an abundance of storage space to ensure that your products are stored in the most secure and efficient way possible. They also rely on technology to manage inventory and provide suggestions for product storage to minimize any errors and delays. Providing Access to Advanced Software Solutions and Integrations 3PL fulfillment companies rely heavily on state-of-the-art software solutions. Companies like WareIQ offer in-house software to manage your inventory, track your orders, forecast future demand and supply of products, analyse which products are selling the most and least so that they can be placed accordingly and much more. It would be very difficult for eCommerce retailers to gain access to these software solutions on their own, so partnering with fulfillment companies helps them to stay on top of the technological heap and master their eCommerce business models. These companies also enable integrations with multiple fulfillment platforms such as Amazon and Shopify so that you can keep a track of all your orders and customers, in one place. Providing Reverse Logistics Management Facilities Product returns are an undeniable reality in eCommerce retails so sellers should arm themselves with all the facilities that enable them to be dealt with in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible. Reverse logistics is like a supply chain, but in reverse, where returned products have to be picked up from the customer, assessed for any damage and transported back to the warehouses or fulfillment center, in the shortest time possible. Fulfillment companies take care of the entire process and ensure that any wastages or delays are limited and sellers can get back returned goods in the best possible condition, so that they can be resold to another customer, either as a new or refurbished product. Reducing Logistical and Operational Costs The primary goal of every business transaction, whether online or offline, is to maximise profit and cut down on losses. This is easier said than done for small to mid-sized businesses that cannot benefit from economies of scale and have to manage the entire fulfillment process on their own. This is where dedicated fulfillment companies can significantly help to reduce the logistical and operational costs of a business by streamlining multiple resources to get the most efficient results and save the most money on each. All these savings add up and are a huge boon to any eCommerce retailer. Providing transparency to clients and their customers Tracking facilities are extremely important for any eCommerce company, especially ones that deal with multiple orders being shipped to different corners of the country and even more so, for their customers to keep track of every stage of the order process so that they will have a favourable view of the delivery experience. This results in more efficient monitoring of the status of every order and more satisfied customers, who will spread the word of the positive engagement with your business, either through word of mouth, reviews or social media. About WareIQ WareIQ is a category-defining, best-in-class full-stack eCommerce fulfillment tech platform (with inbuilt inventory planning, order management & shipping system) for modern brands to accelerate online sales, expedite revenue growth and profits with same-day and next-day delivery. WareIQ does not only help you reduce your logistic costs but also reduce your delivery timelines – this could be the game-changer your business needs! A few of the outstanding features of WareIQ are as follows: Fulfillment InfrastructureFCs present across tier-1, 2 & 3 citiesRapid ramping up of FCs as required (21 days to go live)Warehouse of various sizes/capacities availableTemperature controlled fulfillment centersDark stores for inventory placement near demand centersInventory Management & Network DesignRecommendations to decrease inventorySegment & clean product portfolio to concentrate on products which create most profit & increase sell-throughAutomating replenishment of stockInventory transfer requests from one warehouse to another through tech platformFlagging of inventory for liquidationOptimize fulfillment network with network designer to store inventory closer to customers for same/next day deliveryFull-stack Technology PlatformManage orders coming from multiple sales channelsTrack orders across various segments – Ready to ship, shipped etc.Courier Recommendation engine to prioritize on speed/costSnapshot of order & revenue fluctuations for analysisTrack pickups, shipments & billing informationWareIQ RushOffer same day delivery using a network of pan-India fulfillment centers, urban dark stores & hyperlocal services, all at no MOQ or distance-based billing About Shiprocket Shiprocket is a shipping aggregation company that operates out of India. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Delhi, its platform enables eCommerce retailers to partner with different carriers, based on their own requirements and multiple other aspects, and allows partners to automate a variety of processes in their business. The company processes more than 200,000 shipments a day and has partnered with retailers, across more than 200 countries. Shiprocket offers integrations with a variety of shipping companies. Some of Shiprocket’s services include: Order Management: Allows clients to manage orders across the entire process of creation, processing and tracking.Cost Estimation: Allows clients to estimate costs and demand for future dates.Shipping Aggregation: Allows clients to take advantage of the services of courier companies that have integrated with Shiprocket, at pre-negotiated rates. About Pickrr Pickrr is an eCommerce logistics and courier service company that was founded in 2015 and is currently headquartered in Bangalore. Pickrr seeks to differentiate itself from other courier services by implementing technology such as AI and ML-based software for smart delivery partner allocation, a courier aggregation that mitigates the need for manual processes in the first-mile phase of the delivery and much more. A few features offered by Pickrr are listed below: Early Cash on Delivery (COD): This helps businesses receive payments continuously and remittance happens after 2 days.Tracking Facilities: This feature provides updates to both the buyer and seller on the status of the order in real-time.Separate Accounting Manager for Each Customer: Pickrr provides a separate dedicated account manager to each user which helps them to get attention and assistance whenever they require it. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Key Differences in Services and Features Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Core Offering Pickrr: Pickrr's core offering is primarily shipping and courier services. It has partnered with multiple major shipping brands to provide services to most places within India and over 220 locations outside India as well. Shiprocket: Shiprocket’s core offering is centred around shipping and distribution services tailored for eCommerce retailers and also offers integrations with a host of other fulfillment platforms. WareIQ: WareIQ’s core offering is primarily fulfillment services that take advantage of its technology-based offerings such as WMS, marketplace integrations, ML-based prediction engine for smart inventory placement, and access to pan-India fulfllment centers & last-mile delivery partners. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Customer Onboarding Time Pickrr: Quick customer onboarding is offered but an exact timeline is not specified. Shiprocket: Shiprocket also offers quick onboarding, but the exact timeline is unknown WareIQ: Customer Onboarding happens rapidly in just 7 days. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Pricing Pickrr: Pickrr offers 3 pricing plans - below 1000 orders that starts at Rs. 29 per order, between 1000 to 5000 orders that starts at Rs. 26 per order and above 1000 orders which starts at Rs. 22 per order. Shiprocket: Shiprocket claims to offer some of the most competitive prices in the shipping industry and offers discounts of as much as 50%. WareIQ: WareIQ offers reduced pricing compared to its competitors in addition to cost-effective features like billing per usage and no additional down payments in addition to customers not having to spend extra on external WMS and shipping software as it offers in-house solutions for these requirements. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Technological Features Pickrr: Pickrr has technological features such as an AI and ML software platform, software integrations, automated first-mile delivery, WMS capabilities and much more. Shiprocket: Shiprocket also offers advanced technological solutions such as NDR Management, automated shipping services, order tracking facilities, SMS notifications and a recommendation engine. WareIQ: WareIQ seeks to be known as a technology company, just as much as a fulfillment company and offers advanced technological features such as a custom Warehouse Management System (WMS), decisive inventory tracking software with WhatsApp and SMS updates and a command center with dashboard access for customers to keep an eye on important metrics of the business. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: App Store Pickrr: Pickrr, like Shiprocket, has neither an app store not offers app support but does offer API integrations. Shiprocket: Shiprocket does not have its own app store or offer app support. It does offer API integrations. WareIQ: WareIQ provides a well designed, intuitive and easily navigable app store with a whole suite of downloadable apps to enhance the fulfillment experience of users and their customers by consolidating branded tracking solutions, suggestions to improve efficiency in different areas, notification, customer feedback, and RTO insurance in one centralised location. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Services Offered Pickrr: Pickrr offers services such as shipping and tracking facilities, order fulfillment, early COD orders, automated first-mile delivery, inventory management and much more. Shiprocket: Shiprocket offers a wide variety of services such as zero monthly fees, no minimum shipment requirements, API integrations, packaging, prepaid COD and much more. WareIQ: WareIQ offers a vast range of services such as B2B fulfillment, Amazon FBA preparation, Seller Fulfilled Prime, Flipkart preparation, Nykaa fulfillment, fulfillment centers, WMS, nation-wide distribution network, same-day delivery, packaging services, inventory management, order tracking software and much more. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Integrations Pickrr: Pickrr is primarily a shipping service and offers integrations with platforms such as Woocommerce, Shopify, Magento, Opencart, Sumtracker and others to be able to sync order, inventory management and shipping data across all of them. Shiprocket: Shiprocket offers software integrations to most of the major global fulfillment platforms such as Amazon Fulfillment, Shopify Fulfillment, Magento and others, which comes with benefits such as tracking facilities across platforms, inventory management, data syncing and much more. WareIQ: WareIQ offers WMS integrations to multiple world-renowned B2C & B2B marketplaces such as Flipkart, Amazon, Myntra, Meesho, & website builders like Shopify, Magento and many others. This allows users to seamlessly import and export user data, manage inventory and keep track of orders, across multiple platforms. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Unique Selling Point (USP) Pickrr: Pickrr seeks to provide delivery even to the most isolated parts of the country in a timely and efficient manner. Pickrr currently services more than 29000 pin codes in India. Shiprocket: Shiprocket provides some of the most cost-effective shipping rates in the industry and offers seamless integration with multiple other platforms. WareIQ: WareIQ offers a full-stack granular platform, which means that they offer solutions at every stage of the supply chain, with customers being able to opt for the specific services that they require starting from warehousing, packaging, inventory management, order tracking, shipping etc. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Packaging Pickrr: Pickrr offers packaging facilities for transporting orders to customers but lacks customization abilities. Shiprocket: Shiprocket provides branded packaging services as per their customer's requirements. WareIQ: WareIQ offers the choice between branded WareIQ packaging, custom packaging as per the requirements of their clients and standard packaging. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Cold Storage Facilities Pickrr: Pickrr doesn't provide cold storage facilities. Shiprocket: Shiprocket provides cold storage facilities in their warehouses. WareIQ: WareIQ provides cold storage facilities in their warehouses. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Feature Comparison Table [table id=28 /] Conclusion: Why Should You Choose WareIQ for Your eCommerce Requirements? As seen above, eCommerce retailers are faced with many challenges and need to find a way to make their services as appealing as possible to their own customers and also stay within budget. There are multiple fulfillment companies available that provide a range of services and it is up to you to identify which companies' services coincide with your requirements. That being said, as we have learned above, Shiprocket vs Pickrr vs WareIQ is a tough choice. However, if you are looking for a full-stack fulfillment service, WareIQ is the best eCommerce fulfillment platform available in India. WareIQ offers a host of different services that can benefit every aspect of your business and also provides these services in a full-stack platform, so that you can opt for whichever service you require, without needing to purchase services that you don’t need. WareIQ provides a horizontal fulfilment platform, built on top of a decentralised pan-India fulfilment network. This network consists of state-of-the-art fulfilment centres and integrations with national, regional and hyperlocal shipping partners, covering 27000+ pin codes. Sellers send their stock to WareIQ’s regional distribution centre, post which based on analytics-based insights, WareIQ stores inventory closest to end customers to enable next/same day delivery, and optimization of SLAs. [signup] Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: FAQs How is WareIQ’s Fulfillment Platform different from other 3PL companies?WareIQ’s analytics-enabled technology platform functions as the central command center for all your logistics operations. Order management, inventory management, warehouse management & shipping management – all are possible through WareIQ’s platform. Why do businesses opt to partner with 3PL fulfillment companies?Some businesses that don’t have large amounts of resources, labour, finances and technical know-how opt to partner with 3PL fulfillment companies because they can offload the entire order fulfillment process to them for a specified fee while they can focus on core aspects of the business such as marketing and R&D. What are the factors you need to consider when choosing a 3PL fulfillment provider?A few factors that you would need to know to make your decision easier are listed below:- Your own requirements- The demand levels your company has- The order volume you receive- The nature of your products- Your financial capabilitiesPost this, you need to identify which company best coincides with your requirements and make a decision. Pickrr vs Shiprocket vs WareIQ: Which one is the best eCommerce fulfillment company in India?As mentioned above, you would need to assess your own requirements and capabilities before making a decision. While all of them provide a vast array of services, WareIQ’s core offering is eCommerce fulfillment while Pickrr & Shiprockect specialise in providing eCommerce shipping solutions only. WareIQ provide a full stack eCommerce fulfillment platform enabling same/next day delivery through its vast network of fulfillment centers, urban dark stores etc. It also offers supply chain productivity applications that enhance post shipping experience, which helps it edge out the competition. Does WareIQ offer only order fulfillment?No. WareIQ offers a whole range of eCommerce services ranging from fulfillment centers and inventory management to a robust tech platform & WMS software for inventory planning & management and reverse logistics and everything in between.
June 03, 2022
Perpetual Inventory System: Definition, Methods, Factors Considered, Benefits & How is Perpetual Inventory Different From Periodic Inventory Systems in 2022
For any sustainable and successful business, a sound inventory system is required to track goods throughout the supply chain cycle. From purchasing raw materials to producing the goods and finally, selling the product, proper inventory management is key. It’s an effective system that keeps records of purchased materials, sales inventory and also stock-on-hand details of your business entity. The fundamental structure of inventory management includes inventory purchase (ready-to-sell goods that are procured and delivered to the point of sale or warehouse), storage of inventory (inventory that is stored until needed) and goods and materials that are at different stages of the fulfillment network. There are two types of inventory, as stated below: Periodic Inventory Perpetual Inventory While both these accounting methods are similar (businesses use them to track the number of products, stock availability etc.), they have several inherent differences. What is Perpetual Inventory System? A perpetual inventory system allows businesses to keep a real-time account or stock of inventory on hand. The widespread usage of computers and technology has made this system very effective. Businesses worldwide have found that this system is highly user-friendly and has fostered the ease of conducting various processes, eliminating redundancies and complexities of the traditional inventory system. Barcodes, Radio Frequency Identification Scanners (RFID) and point of sales systems supported by perpetual inventory systems, quickly input inventory information of all business transactions on a real-time basis. Perpetual Inventory Systems are popular in modern business. They are often found in large businesses, across multiple industries such as jewellers, electronic stores and global enterprises such as restaurant chains, clothing stores, etc. Perpetual inventory systems track the details of product sales instantly through point-of-sale systems (PoS). However, perpetual inventory does not keep track of physical products. Inventory reports can be accessed online at any time, making it easier to manage inventory levels and the cash needed to purchase additional inventory. Updates are automatically created when you receive or sell inventory. Your inventory accounts immediately reflect data about purchases, return of goods and stock data. [contactus_gynoveda] 6 Main Differences Between Perpetual Inventory and Periodic Inventory Systems A perpetual inventory system constantly updates the purchase and sales records constantly, which provides a real-time reflection into what is staying or leaving the warehouse. A periodic inventory system only records updates to inventory and costs of sales at scheduled times throughout the year, not on a constant basis. While a perpetual inventory system can record and monitor the movement of the stock non-stop, a periodic inventory system can update inventory records at intervals, which happens after the stock is physically accounted for. Comparative Analysis between perpetual inventory and periodic inventory [table id=27 /] Advantages of Perpetual Inventory There are multiple advantages of perpetual inventory, which gives companies the ability to operate more effectively. Provides Updates in Real-Time Perpetual inventory maintains live records of inventory as soon as it is bought or obtained by the company. This enables the retailer to always be aware of when stocks are running low, which items are popular when items were bought etc. so they can plan accordingly and be ahead of the curve. Manages Inventory in Multiple Warehouses Gone are the days when companies had to maintain multiple spreadsheets or files and manually add and remove items from the list. Perpetual inventory systems consolidate all your inventory records which is stored across multiple warehouses, in one place. This will help make processes more efficient and will surely mitigate any errors or delays. Keeps Users Informed Through Forecasting Using perpetual inventory, retailers have a better idea of their customers' purchasing patterns based on the inventory sold. They will have a better idea of which products are in demand, during which season and which price point is doing the best. They will also get an idea of which products aren’t doing well and are just accumulating space in the warehouse. This understanding will help the business forecast demand and supply in the future. Assists in Accounting Procedures Inventory is a key aspect of every accounting process as it gauges the value of the assets that firms have on hand. Since perpetual inventory systems constantly track and provide updates on inventory levels, it becomes much easier and faster to access this information. Disadvantages of Perpetual Inventory Can be Expensive Perpetual inventory is generally regarded as not being a pocket-friendly solution because of all the technology and software that is needed to enable it. Adding new inventory lists can also be chargeable, in addition to needing to train employees on how to use it. Overall, it may not be the best option for small businesses that do not need to calculate inventory for multiple different warehouses. Non-Consideration of Expired and Mishandled Goods Since perpetual inventory systems utilise data from sales and purchases to maintain records of inventory, it sometimes leaves out items that have been purchased but may have expired or have broken due to mishandling. Since manual counts are not performed, the management will continue to count those items unless someone has physically noticed the incident. This opens the door for unwanted errors and discrepancies in the inventory count. 5 Operations of a Perpetual Inventory System Point-of-Sale System A point-of-sale or point-of-purchase in a perpetual inventory system is the place where the customer walks up to your checkout counter after they pick up a product or service at a store or business entity. A point-of-sale is the combination of hardware units and software applications that enable your business to make those sales to customers. Cost of Goods Sold Updates Cost of goods sold (COGS) refers to the direct costs of the production of goods sold by a company. This includes the cost of the materials procured and labour hired to create the goods. Indirect expenses like distribution costs and sales force costs are excluded in COGS. Reorder Point Automation A reorder point system alerts you about when to place an order, so you won't run out of stock and tells you when to place a requisition to replenish your stocks. The reorder automation point automatically calculates your stock based on forecasting that is based on past consumption data (historical data) to forecast future requirements. Purchase Order Automation Purchase Order Automation Systems streamline your purchase orders to increase efficiency by tallying with the corresponding invoice and requisition purchase requests automatically. Warehouse Management Software Typically, any warehouse management system (WMS) is designed to monitor the entire inventory in hand. It can also manage supply chain operations right from the manufacturing or distribution centre and can coordinate with different parts of the supply chain to get tasks done. 6 Things to Consider Before Choosing An Inventory System Requirements You first need to assess your requirements and make the decision based on that. A small business would require a very different inventory management system than a multinational company. You would need to be aware of how much inventory you would need to manage, the nature of the inventory, the value of the items, etc. Expenses Because of the fact that certain inventory management systems are so dependent on technology, such as the perpetual inventory system, prices can easily skyrocket, which would be pointless if you don’t need all those features in the first place. Choose a system that fits your budget so that you can invest in other facets of your business. Configuration Options If your business deals with multiple types of inventory, scattered across different warehouses, it would be important to make a note of the customizability of the system so that you can get the most out of it. It would not be of any help if you are not able to manage your inventory as efficiently as possible due to constraints in your inventory management software. Ease of Use It is important for businesses, especially smaller ones, to factor in ease of use when they are opting for an inventory management system. If the system is too complicated and requires a sharp learning curve, it could take days for your employees to get accustomed to it. Choose a system that has all the features you are looking for but that is also well-designed and user-friendly. Integration Ability Inventory is the key component of any eCommerce business. It pays off to have an inventory management system that can play nice with other software tools and systems involved in other business activities. There shouldn’t be a bottleneck in any section of the business and you can do your best to make sure your inventory management system can integrate well with other applications. Flexibility Flexibility is a very important factor to consider while choosing an inventory management system since it’ll be handling such a key aspect of your business. You need to find out things like if it is compatible with devices of all screen sizes, what software platform it uses and if it can integrate with other systems. Once you understand this, it’ll make your decision much easier. Support After-sales support is a key factor when choosing an inventory management system, especially if you have shelled out a decent amount. You would want to have access to facilities such as tutorials and customer support in case something goes wrong and you need some assistance. Companies that care about their customers even after the sale is made, often provide the best services. Perpetual Inventory System: Methods FIFO Perpetual Inventory Method FIFO is a cost flow tracking system under which the first unit of inventory acquired is considered to be the first unit consumed or sold. The perpetual FIFO inventory method determines the cost of your oldest inventory and multiplies that cost by the total amount of inventory sold. LIFO Perpetual Inventory Method This method is a cost flow assumption that businesses use to evaluate their stocks wherein, the last items placed in inventory are the first items sold. To Summarise, the last costs available at the time of the sale are the first to be removed from the Inventory account and debited to the Cost of Goods Sold account. Weight Averaging Cost Perpetual Inventory Method The weighted average cost method is a means of tracking inventory that assigns a cost to each unit based on the average cost of all units that are available for sale during a specified time period. The weighted average cost per unit is arrived at by adding the total cost of all units available for sale divided by the total number of units available. Perpetual Inventory Benefits for eCommerce Business Shortens the Time Needed for Accounting Procedures During the preparation of financial books, usually at the end of the year, the value of the closing stock needs to be known. With a perpetual inventory system, this information is always on-hand as it reflects any changes to the inventory in real-time which helps to speed up accounting procedures. Requires Less Investment in Materials Since perpetual inventory systems keep track of every purchase and sale of inventory, whether is raw materials, finished goods or work-in-progress products, businesses can get a clear idea of the what amounts they are spending on what materials and it can help them optimize the quantities that are needed and thus, reduce costs. Helps in Restocking A business will be able to know if inventory of a certain product is running low and will be able to reorder items before it runs out completely. This aids in the continuous fulfillment of customer orders and keeps the business running smoothly and effectively. Optimises the Use of Resources Since perpetual inventory gives us a clear idea of what the expenses and incomes of the business are and where they are entering and exiting from, the business can optimize every process that involves working capital, whether it is labour working on a particular task, the purchase of materials, the transport of goods, etc. Helps Provide a Clear Picture Perpetual inventory systems update inventory levels in real-time. This means that you will always have an idea of which products are doing well and which aren’t. In addition, you’ll get access to more granular data such as seasonal demand for products, what causes spikes and dips in demand and much more. Conclusion A perpetual inventory system provides more accurate information because ongoing recording and prompt verification of inventory are done. Perpetual Inventory also enables financial statements to be prepared quickly and accurately. A Perpetual Inventory System is best suited for big enterprises, while a periodic inventory system is suitable for small businesses. Perpetual inventory is the preferred method for tracking inventory with accurate results on an ongoing basis. If you need help with acquiring a perpetual inventory system for your business and any other fulfillment requirements, WareIQ can be a good option for you. WareIQ has a custom WMS that aids in providing real-time updates of your inventory levels, across multiple warehouses. In addition, our platform can integrate with most big eCommerce marketplaces to ensure that all your inventory management and order fulfillment happens in one centralised location. [signup] Perpetual Inventory System FAQs What is a perpetual inventory system?It is a program designed to estimate your inventory without any disruptions. A perpetual inventory system relies on electronic records, rather than physical ones. It generally starts from the baseline with a physical count and details get updated as and when purchases are made and shipments come inward or move outwards. Why is it important to have a perpetual inventory system?A perpetual inventory system instantly tracks sales and inventory levels for individual items, which helps to prevent stock-outs. Perpetual inventory systems monitor the availability of stock at all times and alerts you whenever a product is out of stock or is getting depleted. Why is a perpetual inventory system most suited for eCommerce businesses?With a high degree of record accuracy, inventory reordering can be conducted with confidence and it ensures stable delivery timelines to your customers. The perpetual inventory system tracks every inventory transaction in real-time; the resulting inventory records are highly accurate and reliable. This may improve customer satisfaction and bolster sales. It also gives business owners a more accurate understanding of customer preferences and centralises the inventory management system for multiple locations. What are the advantages of the Perpetual Inventory System over the Periodic Inventory System? A Perpetual inventory system captures and tracks updates to inventory and costs of sales throughout the year. A perpetual inventory system is designed to update and record the inventory account automatically whenever a sale or purchase takes place. Each sale or purchase that happens immediately upon sale or purchase is recognised. A periodic inventory system updates the inventory account at certain scheduled times or the end of an operating cycle. The update and recognition could occur at the end of the month, quarter or year. There is a gap between the sale or purchase of inventory and when the inventory activity is recognized. A faster inventory system enables companies to react faster to the supply and demand of the market. What kind of business is ideally suited for a Perpetual Inventory System?Typically a large enterprise with large amounts of inventory, sales volumes and multiple retail outlets need perpetual inventory systems. The scope for marginal errors with the periodic system is higher when compared to the perpetual system because it is based on a physical counting system. Many leading eCommerce enterprises use a perpetual inventory system for tracking stocks at their stores and warehouses such as Amazon, Walmart, Marks & Spencer and others.
June 03, 2022
10 Best eCommerce Logistics Companies in India in 2022
Online shopping has gained massive popularity due to the immense convenience and hassle-free nature that is associated with it. Due to this, there has been a surge in the number of businesses that want to sell their product online but may not have the resources and logistical capabilities to do so independently. This is where eCommerce logistics companies can help by enabling sellers to offload their entire logistical requirements to them. What are eCommerce Logistics Companies? Demand always fuels supply, and as eCommerce firms have rapidly grown into global giants, their requirement for logistics, distribution, inventory handling, and supply-chain management has grown equally. This is where the importance of logistics companies for ecommerce shines through. To support this growing global industry – that works across borders, eCommerce logistics companies have evolved as well. They have grown to become supply-chain partners from merely being providers of last-mile logistics and delivery services. These logistics companies for ecommerce specialise in this type of service are typically called “3PLs”, i.e., third-party logistics providers. When eCommerce firms partner with the logistics companies, they outsource several key functions of their business processes to them, e.g., order fulfillment, inventory management, ecommerce warehousing, order returns, and customer support. The rapid growth of eCommerce platforms has also spawned a whole new world of brands, i.e., D2C (direct-to-consumer) brands. These brands are hugely dependent on collaborating with eCommerce logistics companies to act on their behalf as fulfillment partners since they do not operate any brick-and-mortar stores. Their only connection with their consumers (outside the eCommerce platform for receiving orders) is via such logistics companies for eCommerce. The best logistics providers for eCommerce have flexible and vast operations to service eCommerce businesses of all sizes – and it is your job to select best logistics companies in India that best match your requirements. You would do well to remember that while a good logistics companies for eCommerce will help you manage your supply chain, dropshipping and order fulfillment, the very best ones will help you optimise and improve your supply-chain operations. This enables you to service your customers as best as possiblestay competitivegrow your business profitably [contactus_lilgoodness] What are the Features Offered by Top eCommerce Logistics Companies? As is typical in all industries and ecosystems, the top logistics companies for ecommerce that compete for the best clients and command significant market shares have several key characteristics in common. That is to be expected because these companies have become forces in their respective industries by adopting the best practices, and this is what you must check to see. Given below are four top features that the top best logistics companies in India offer: Tracking facilities The logistics and distribution industry and the vast and complex supply-chain networks they operate have numerous moving parts. The top logistics firms maintain real-time, and 100% visibility across all elements of their operations and are sure to track every movement. Modern-day logistics companies for eCommerce use the latest technologies, tracking systems, and inventory trackers to maintain a holistic and detailed view of their current orders and ongoing deliveries received from various channels. Thus, you have real-time information about your inventory levels and order statuses (completed, delayed, returned and to be fulfilled, etc.) Modern technology The top eCommerce logistics companies are fully equipped with the latest technology by the natural extension of the point above. Their systems are driven by tools like data analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and cloud software. All these technologies and systems are geared toward reducing the dependence on manual labour and automating cumbersome and time-intensive functions across the entire supply chain network. The good thing is that since all players within this ecosystem (at least the top ones) have adopted modern technology that is adaptable and inter-connected across various stages of the supply-chain network, the entire ecosystem functions at an incredibly high level of efficiency. Users like you can monitor it all from a centralised location. Route-optimisation for improved efficiency Leading eCommerce logistics companies are constantly striving to improve their processes, improve the reliability of their deliveries, reduce costs, and minimise delivery times (etc.). Therefore, they rely heavily on delivery management software for route optimisation. By identifying the “best route” to transport goods from the storage location to the delivery address, they can achieve a cost-effective, efficient, and reliable service. Bear in mind that the “best route” is not the shortest, cheapest, or fastest – but the one that balances out all the numerous elements to come up with the best one. This goes a long way toward improving customer loyalty, a key indicator of a sustainable, prosperous business. Top-notch customer support Satisfied and happy customers are the lifeline of any business. Here too, logistics companies for eCommerce make sure that they treat this as a final metric and operate omnichannel customer support systems. This is especially important today since customer demands have evolved. In the modern hyper-connected era, they want to be kept in the loop at all times and track their parcels across all stages of their journey in real-time (etc.) 10 Important Factors to Consider While Choosing an eCommerce Logistics Company Choosing the correct logistic company for eCommerce is important and must not be made in a hurry. Thorough due diligence is needed since several elements have to be considered when assessing your logistics partner. These range from industry-related points to those that are specific at the company level. Let’s look at the top 10 points to consider while making your decision: Cost of shipping This is a very important metric. As mentioned above, just like the “best route” considers all elements, the shipping cost determines the overall package of your shipper. A low price does not mean your overall shipping cost will be low. Therefore, you must look for the correct balance between price and services. For example, hidden costs such as additional fees for cash orders, add-on services charged separately, or discrepancies in goods tonnage, can result in a much higher overall shipping cost for you even though the rate-card price offered may appear low. Therefore, make a thorough analysis of what service you need and your cost and profit structure, and then assess which eCommerce logistics companies fit your requirements. Number of pin codes reached While a greater number of pin codes your logistics partner serves is always a good thing, you must start with your requirements. If you expect the bulk of your orders to come from a limited number of pin codes, you do not require this. You must first ensure that your logistics partner covers – with efficiency – the areas that you need to service. For example, your customers may live mostly in tier I & II towns versus metros. Therefore, select eCommerce logistics companies accordingly. Real-time visibility Everything in today’s world is now tracked in real-time. Everything is on-demand and instant. Today’s customer is unsatisfied with the good old “your order is out for delivery” – he needs to track his parcel movement in real-time and receive regular updates about its progress. This has become a critical component of creating customer satisfaction, and eCommerce logistics companies must have the power to provide it. For example, GPS-equipped delivery management software helps them to maintain this visibility. Service-level-agreements (SLAs) Given the vast array of services performed by logistics companies for eCommerce, this is a long list. Naturally, these can be core services (e.g. cash delivery, next-day delivery) or other special delivery services, including customised packing, hyper-local, specific time-window based (etc.) Each service has its price tag, terms and conditions of delivery, and rates. Negotiating a package price could work well for you in reducing your shipping costs. But for that, you first need to have a good handle on your requirements such as volume of orders, weight, value, fragility (etc.) Speed Customers, especially eCommerce customers, have rapidly evolved. Fuelled by the super-quick delivery times offered by eCommerce behemoths like Amazon, the consumers now expect this as a standard. Not only that, but they also want options, customisation, and real-time updates. However, speed of delivery – as maintained by your competitors- is something your eCommerce logistics companies must provide. If you cannot keep up, customers will go to your competitors. You should be able to eliminate some options based on delivery speeds and their associated shipping rates. Return-order management Unfortunately, an unavoidable aspect of an online business is the order returns. And while it will never go away completely, the trick is to reduce the number to its bare minimum so that it does not burn a hole in your operational expenses or create unhappy customers. Some eCommerce logistics companies pitch order-return management as part of their core strengths and are experts at managing it – from picking the parcel up to redelivery or refunding. They also efficiently handle other related issues, such as delayed shipments or failed ones. This becomes especially important if you are a large eCommerce firm or are experiencing rapid growth. Infrastructure Using modern-day infrastructures like temperature-controlled delivery trucks or specialised packaging that is hardy and moisture-proof results in fewer goods being damaged while in transit. Choosing a logistics company for eCommerce that offers such facilities may cost more than regular services but depending on the type of products you sell, the distance, and the type of roads they have to be transported over (etc.), this may be a good idea. You will see that your overall cost of operations will be lowered since the cost of breakage, pilferage, and damage during transit will come down significantly. A good track record on this front also helps in reducing your insurance premium, thereby further reducing your costs. Last-Mile Delivery software As mentioned earlier, route optimisation is a cornerstone in the logistics business. If an eCommerce logistics company can optimise the delivery routes by balancing out several elements such as number of deliveries on a route, bunching together similar deliveries of weight, destination, time etc., it results in a much lower cost of operation, including significantly reduced fuel consumption, which is one of the costliest line-items for logistics companies. Thus, not only is your customer happy due to speedy delivery, but you can also offer them competitive shipping rates. Delivery security You may want to offer your customers security and peace of mind with insured and secured deliveries. This has grown to become particularly useful for eCommerce firms and their customers. For example, specialised services like white-glove delivery, a service typically used for special cargo like heavy and bulky (e.g. large furniture sets), fragile, or high-value goods (e.g. expensive large-screen TVs), take very strict precautions while delivering these specialised goods. Customers are happy to pay a premium to ensure their goods are delivered safely, and you make a larger profit while offering your customers a choice of delivery options. It is a win-win for everyone concerned. Past performance While looking for best logistics providers, a starting point in your research should be its past performance scorecard. At the end of the day, it is the performance that matters. A logistics firm may have several important features required for good, solid performance, but it is not of much use if they cannot harness all of it and put it together. For example, they may have poor leadership. Or suffer from labour turnover. Or from union-related problems. Speak to their clients, both current and former, their vendors, suppliers, and value-chain partners. Check online reviews and eCommerce customer forums. You will immediately get a sense of whether they can walk the talk. Since the leading logistics firms have been around a while, you should not have any problem getting the information you seek. 10 Best eCommerce Logistics Companies in India In 2020, the value of the logistics market in India was pegged at about $220 billion. This is expected to grow at approximately 6% CAGR over the next five years. With a vast geographical spread, limited infrastructure (roads, airports, rail connectivity, etc.), and a widely-dispersed population, logistics companies in India put in a lot of effort to make sure your parcels are being delivered safely and on time. The advent of eCommerce and its increased coverage of pin codes in the country has also meant an improved infrastructure. Several logistics companies for eCommerce, dedicated to fulfilling online orders, now operate 24/7 on a large scale. They use an elaborate network of warehouses, vehicular fleets, employees, modern technology (etc.) to manage their daily tasks. We have enlisted the top 10 eCommerce logistics companies in India. The following companies have gained popularity and acclaim due to their speedy deliveries, modern systems, and strong customer service. WareIQEcom ExpressRivigoGatiXpressBeesAramexBlueDartTrackonShadowfaxDotzot WareIQ Source WareIQ is a category defining, best- in class full-stack eCommerce fulfillment tech platform (with inbuilt inventory planning, order management & shipping system) for modern brands to accelerate online sales/ expedite revenue growth & profits with same/next day delivery. We not only help you reduce your logistic costs but also your delivery timelines – this could be the game-changer your business needs! WareIQ offers centralised tech platform for your entire eCommerce operations ML-based prediction engine for efficient warehouse network design & smart inventory placementCentralised platform for core fulfilment & shipping operationsPost-shipping apps for a delightful experience & zero to minimum supply chain leakages Today, over 300 brands have taken charge of their logistics & fulfillment with WareIQ to unlock tremendous value in terms of revenue and customer satisfaction. WareIQ Rush is their tech platform that provides same day delivery service. Using this platform, WareIQ is aiming to help online sellers offer same day delivery in every major metropolis in India, with a plus 99% fulfillment rate through their network of fulfillment centers and micro fulfillment centers. Ecom Express Source Founded in 2012 by a group of people who collectively have more than 100+ years of experience in the logistics and distribution sector, Ecom Express is an end-to-end technology enabled logistics service company and provides a plethora of eCommerce logistics services. Some of the services it offers are express delivery, fulfillment services, door step compliance and value added services. It serves leading online portals in India.It is a leading choice for companies that deliver high-value parcels since Ecom Express provides additional surveillance security options.It covers approximately 2,400 cities/towns, more than 27,000 pin codes, and 20 states across India and offers a full-coverage model for eCommerce firms.It currently employs more than 36,000 people.Their express delivery service guarantees 72 hours of order fulfillment. It also provides doorstep quality checks for their order-return facility and a 72-hour guarantee for returning the item. Rivigo Source While Rivigo only entered the eCommerce logistics business in 2014, it has quickly risen to the position of one of the most reputed and trusted logistics partners in India. It is a technology company that has emerged as a big player in the sector who's goal is to provide logistical services to a mass audience of eCommerce sellers. Rivigo is seeking to solve a tangible problem of truck driver shortages by using a breakthrough relay model. It employs more than 100,000 people and has 15,000+ delivery partners.It covers more than 4,000 cities in India across 29,000+ pin codes.It has partnered with leading firms like ITC, Maruti Suzuki, Flipkart, and Hero MotoCorp etc.It offers convenient payment options to allow you to choose from COD, UPI, prepaid orders, or payment during delivery.Their API is reputed for superfast delivery. It provides express and hyperlocal services also.It offers tools for crowdsourcing and route-optimisation to cut shipping costs for eCommerce firms.It offers relay trucking, express delivery, specialised security, FTL, LTL, and customs clearance. Gati Source Gati Ltd. is an eCommerce logistics company that is headquartered in Mumbai. It is an established player in this industry, having begun its journey more than four decades ago in 1989. It is one of the oldest logistics firms in India. It provides end-2-end logistics for eCommerce fulfillment. You can choose from the numerous service packages they offer. It offers ground level and air express logistics, supply chain and warehouse management, air freight and e-commerce services. Gati has offices in all major states of India. It lays claim to be the express delivery pioneer in India. It covers 17,000+ pin codes and 99% of states.It offers different services at various price-bundles.It serves a range of industries like B2B, B2C, and C2C.It offers services like heavyweight shipments, express delivery, EPOD (electronic proof-of-delivery), customised packaging, and time-scheduled delivery. It also offers AM-PM delivery, COD, and high-surface cargo. XpressBees Source Founded in 2015, XpressBees has risen to become a major Indian player in the logistics industry. It serves a wide range of industries and products, including pharmaceuticals and heavy-duty machinery. It maintains a wide network of fulfillment centres. It is one of the fastest growing ecommerce logistics companies in India catering to end-to-end supply chain solutions. Since our inception, they have maintained a 100% growth in revenue on a yearly basis. It has more than 100+ distribution centres.Its pin code coverage is 13,000+ kms.It employs more than 30,000 people across 2,800 offices.Solutions it offers include express delivery and cross-border customs clearances. Aramex Source Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Dubai, Aramex is an international delivery, courier service and package delivery company that has grown rapidly since its inception and is a preferred logistics firm in India. It is the first Arab company to be listed on NASDAQ. The company was founded in 1982 in Amman, Jordan. It offers facility management for brands that have their own warehouses.It offers warehousing facilities for smaller firms and MSEs (Medium-Small Enterprises).It offers flexible pricing on large orders (by volume).It offers online tracking for orders and dropshipping facilities BlueDart Source Founded in 1983, BlueDart is an Indian eCommerce logistics and distribution company which provides courier services and is a behemoth in the fulfillment and delivery business and has a huge network in India. It has it's headquarters in Mumbai, Maharashtra. It employs 12,200 people in India and 275,000 people internationally.It covers more than 220 countries all over the world.Its pin code coverage is 35,000+kms in IndiaIt offers special services like giving customers the ability to choose the date and time of delivery (scheduled delivery), COD, customised packaging, EPOD (electronic proof-of-delivery), and express delivery. Trackon Source From its humble beginnings in 2002 with only two locations in Mumbai and Delhi, Trackon has grown rapidly. With nearly two decades of experience, they have a topline of over Rs.240 crores, they are focused mainly in the northern part of India. They also provide services in South Asia. They offer services such as air and surface express cargo, reverse pickup solutions and cash on delivery, Its pin code coverage is 5,000 kmIt has more than 4,000 offices pan-IndiaIt has 10,000 employeesIt covers 47 citiesIts daily consignments are over 2 lakhsServices that it offers include Prime Track (launched in 2010), the flagship premium service for urgent and valuable parcels that ensures quick delivery. A free-pickup service is also offered, in addition to both air and surface modes. Shadowfax Source Founded in 2015, Shadowfax has become one of India's premier 3PL service providers and serves a long list of companies in India and internationally. They have garnered a reputation for their speedy delivery services and can pick up parcels from warehouse locations and marketplaces. Its pin code coverage is 7,000+ kmIt has an employee count of over 150,000 peopleIt offers special services like hyperlocal delivery, COD, on-demand, express delivery, COD, and in-transit storage in the first mile and last mileIt also accepts cashless payments for doorstep deliveries Dotzot Source Launched as the logistic arm of DTDC in 2013, Dotzot says it is the first all-India delivery logistics operator that has focused on eCommerce. They aim to enhance the fulfillment experience for online customers by constantly focusing (and improving) on its processes, technology, and design. It claims to be the first Indian network that offered store pickup, order-return services, and home delivery. Its pin code coverage is 10,000+ kmsIt covers 10 leading Indian cities, has 180 offices and operates 1,000 stores It employs over 8,400 people and collaborates with 10,000 channel partners.It services 1+ million clients through pickup locations or from home pickups.It offers comprehensive order fulfillment services right from parcel pickup, shipping, and tracking through to return-order fulfillment. Conclusion: Should You Partner with eCommerce Logistics Companies? As evident from the above, there should not be any hesitation on the part of eCommerce firms to partner with suitable eCommerce logistics companies to take care of their order fulfillment. However, what is also evident is that you go through robust due diligence. This ensures that you partner up with logistics companies for eCommerce that is most suited to your requirements. As enumerated above, several eCommerce logistics companies offer a variety of services and packages, and it is incumbent upon you to assess these in context with your needs. This is where a company like WareIQ can help. WareIQ has empowered brands to sell more, sell faster & sell everywhere. WareIQ has customised offerings for merchants experiencing different order volumes as well as having different delivery speed expectations. WareIQ is probably one of the very few fulfilment tech companies in the world that have same-day delivery service for their customers under their product “WareIQ RUSH”. The success of your e-commerce business not only depends on your product quality but also on the time it takes to reach your customer. With WareIQ’s real-time data and prompt response times, you can ensure timely deliveries and greater brand reliability. This translates to satisfied customers — the most crucial success metric for DTC brands in a competitive space like India. [signup] Ecommerce Logistics Company FAQs What is e-commerce logistics?The process of manufacturing, labeling, storing, and eventually delivering a product to a customer’s doorstep once purchased is commonly known as Ecommerce Logistics. Which logistics are best for ecommerce?• WareIQ • Ecom • Express • Rivigo • Gati • XpressBees • Aramex • BlueDart • Trackon • Shadowfax • Dotzot What are different types of Logistics?• Supply, • Distribution, • Production and • Reverse logistics. How does e-commerce logistics work?Ecommerce logistics and courier companies help online stores with shipping, packaging, and picking. They also provide a variety of different shipping services that might assist a company in expanding and reaching a wider audience. Understanding how end-to-end logistics work is the only way to truly optimize logistics operations. Which logistics does Amazon sellers use?• Shipped by Amazon.• WareIQ• BlueDart.• FedEx.• Delhivery.• eCom Express.• Aramex.• Indian Post Service.• Gati.
June 03, 2022
What is eCommerce Shipping? A Detailed Guide On Processes, Benefits, 9 Best Practices to Delight Customers
Transportation of a product procured from an online retailer by a customer to their door is known as eCommerce shipping. The above is a simple definition. However, today's eCommerce shipping involves highly complex processes - ordering, picking and packing, labelling, shipping, tracking, communication, and returns - that work seamlessly to deliver the product at the right place, time, and price. What is eCommerce Shipping? eCommerce shipping is essentially the transportation of an ordered product from the warehouse or fulfillment center to the customer's location, where delivery personnel will handle the last-mile phase of the order fulfillment process to deliver it to the customer. eCommerce shipping is a critical function of online retail as it is a crucial differentiator in satisfying and retaining a customer. Any business strategy of an eCommerce set-up must consider the capability to ensure the timely delivery of a purchased product safely at a reasonable cost. Developing and implementing the right shipping process with the right partners ensures a controlled and inexpensive delivery operation. The goal of an eCommerce shipping plan is to have an inexpensive and efficient process that delivers the product safely and on time, every time. The advent of eCommerce has given rise to fast deliveries of products that one shops for from the comfort of their home. Thus, eCommerce shipping has become a vital aspect of a successful eCommerce business, as it offers both convenience and quick deliveries to customers. Hence, an eCommerce business that delivers a product purchased online quickly, safely, and on time can sway buyers, increasing sales and retaining loyal customers. Poorly-planned shipping for the eCommerce process may significantly impact the success of an eCommerce business. A weak shipping process implementation could lead to late deliveries, high shipping costs, unfulfilled or misplaced orders, wrong items shipped, ambiguous return policies, and poor or damaged packaging, thus, impacting the business [contactus_lilgoodness] What are the Processes Involved in eCommerce Shipping? The shipping process in eCommerce involves receiving an order from the customer and all the operations after that to successfully deliver it to the customer including confirming the order, locating the relevant products in the warehouse, packaging them and having them picked up by the shipping company, that will eventually transport it to the same city or town as the customer, from where on-ground delivery partners will pick it up and provide the last-mile delivery to the customer's exact location. The eCommerce shipping process has three preliminary stages: Order Receiving This process begins with the customer placing an order and the seller confirming it. Once it has been confirmed, the products need to be located in the warehouse and confirmed that they are in stock, after which the next phases can commence. Order Processing Order processing involves scrutinizing every detail of the order such as making sure that the product is not damaged, checking the number of items or units ordered, checking the accuracy of the delivery address and which route and courier provider would be the fastest, which lays the groundwork for the product to eventually be picked up and transported by the relevant eCommerce shipping company. Order Fulfillment This involved the chosen eCommerce shipping company picking up the order after all the final checks and inspections are done to make sure that everything is accurate. Depending on where the customer is located and the proximity of the warehouse or fulfillment center to them, the journey will vary accordingly. Once the order reaches the final destination, it is unloaded and is picked up by the delivery partner, who will eventually handle delivering the order to the customers' doorstep. What are the Various Costs Associated with eCommerce Shipping? eCommerce shipping and logistics costs are complex, and hence an overview of the various expenses associated with eCommerce shipping is given below: Shipping Costs Shipping costs are calculated by considering the following: Dimensions (lxbxh) – volumetric and gross weight All shipping carriers assess both volumetric and gross weight for calculating shipping costs. The higher weight of the two is considered, and the rates are calculated accordingly. The gross weight is the package's actual weight, and the volumetric weight considers the size (l x b x h) of the box to determine the shipping cost. The distance to the door The distance between a package's origin and destination is considered when calculating shipping costs. Thus, the distance between two different points of origin, and shipping to the same destination, may significantly differ. And so, the longer the shipping distance, the higher the shipping cost. Shipping rates structures Generally, most eCommerce businesses use the following two shipping rate options: Flat rate shipping As the name suggests, the rate charged is uniform for all orders within a particular range, like weight range (volumetric or gross), order value, delivery distance, or some other categorization. The disadvantage of this rate structure is that a few orders will be overpriced and others underpriced. Real-time rates With this option, the website displays the actual shipping rates offered by the carrier per the weight of the package, type of service, and the shopper's location. This rate structure charges the correct amount to ship the package to the shopper's location. Free Shipping Most eCommerce businesses increase their sales conversions by offering free shipping. For most consumers shopping online, free shipping is one of the main reasons for completing a purchase on a particular site, thus building customer loyalty. eCommerce businesses can offer free shipping without losing money, as follows: Incorporating shipping costs into product costing.Offering free shipping for a minimum purchase value.Providing a loyalty program and charging a fee in place of free shipping on all orders. Handling Costs Handling fees cover everything other than shipping costs. It includes staffing costs for picking and packing items, labelling, loading/unloading the vehicle, and other fulfillment services. Packaging Packaging affects shipping costs and customer experience, affecting the brand image. The delivery person and the packaging represent a brand that the customer personally interacts with first-hand. A well-executed packaging is a vital feature that fosters brand loyalty and customer retention. Conversely, poor or easily damaged packaging leads to a disappointed customer. The right Packaging There are plenty of packaging options from which one may choose. For example, consider the following to help determine the right packaging option: The type of product.The shape of the product.Weight (volumetric or gross) of the product.Is the product over-dimensional?Fragility or durability of the product.Does the manufacturer supply the product with packaging?Whether to go for plain packaging or brand the packaging. Custom Packaging Though custom packaging will be expensive, top-quality packaging can help one's brand stand out in a competitive environment. Good packaging can create a memorable experience, go viral, and build brand loyalty. Sustainable Packaging With rising eCommerce sales, the waste generated increases. Further, the widespread awareness of the current global environment scenario means that choosing sustainable eCommerce shipping and packaging solutions will help improve one's brand image, leading to increased sales. Shipping Carrier Used Outsourcing shipping services to a 3PL can help the eCommerce businesses expand operationally and negotiate better shipping discounts - lowering overall costs and increasing profits. A sizeable 3PL network of fulfillment centers can also help eCommerce stores with lower shipping costs and transit times. Surcharges Extra costs added to a base rate are surcharges. Any charge exclusive of the regular shipping and handling rates affects the shipping price. Here are a few surcharges: Fuel surcharge: it covers the fluctuating price of oil. It’s a percentage of the shipping cost and changes once a week.Over dimension surcharge: means an oversized or bulky non-standard package, which is non-stackable or fragile. Such packages get charged more.Surcharge for remote territories: are additional fees carriers charge for delivering packages to remote areas, like beyond city limits or the service area covered by the carrier.Dangerous/Hazardous goods: pose a possible risk to other packages carried with it and a delivery person or people near it. Hence such packages incur surcharges. Returns eCommerce returns have now grown into a massive issue. The Paypers’ 2021-2022 Report says shoppers return anywhere from 10% to 40% of their eCommerce purchases. For businesses, returns create challenges in terms of higher logistical costs, increased handling costs, and risk frauds. Also, if the customer returns the product in a damaged condition, the business bears the costs involved in either product refurbishing or disposal. The returns process can be daunting, inconvenient, and frustratingly slow for shoppers. 10 Best Practices in eCommerce Shipping for Competitive Advantage Adopting the best practices for eCommerce shipping is vital for achieving success as this is the differentiator that helps one stand out amongst a host of competitors. It is also proven that nearly 50 to 60% of online shoppers don't buy from eCommerce stores offering high shipping costs. Hence, the practices listed down below should be followed: Form a Team "You are only as strong as your team." — Dominique Wilkins. So go ahead and form a team. It is vital that the business generates leads, attracts shoppers to your site, increases conversions, and handles customers' concerns on shipping efficiently, effectively, and courteously. Accordingly, the following teams will be required sooner or later to grow a successful business: The Marketing Team: designs flyers and promotions to attract visitors to the site. The marketing team also carries out communications of such promotions to customers. Communication could be by emails, sms', blogs, vlogs, social media, and online advertisements. The Web Designers and Developers Team: ensure the site is attractive and easy to navigate for potential customers. Like the product listings and offers, the content is explicit and without ambiguity. Customers must also be able to notice the various shipping options and policies available, preferably before checking out. The Fulfillment Team: ensures that the orders received are processed quickly. The correct items per the order are picked, packed, shipped accurately, and on time. The Customer Service Team: is one of the most critical. A missed or delayed delivery is most aggravating for a customer. They must know how each phase in the product lifecycle affects the customer and how to respond to customer concerns satisfactorily. Concerns could be about a particular ongoing promotion, shipping options or policies, and myriad other issues. Set the Right Goals It is essential to set a goal for yourself. You must know where you wish to go and how to get there. One must review one's path from time to time and then make a course correction if required considering where one wishes to be. Then decide on a strategy that would best help one achieve the desired goal. Set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based) business goals for yourself. Then decide on a strategy. The goals must be clear and concise, which will ensure a profitable shipping strategy with an efficient shipping process and operations. Here are a few questions that one needs to answer to set goals and strategy: What is your target market? Do you wish to acquire international customers or stay domestic? Do you want to brand yourself, or is it simply a side-hustle? Do you want to generate more business and earn profits? How would you do it?How can one increase conversions? By offering free shipping or various shipping options or offering competitive price rates, one can increase conversions.How can you increase the average order value? Maybe by offering free shipping for minimum order quantity/value or a flat shipping rate to high-value or multiple products bundled together.How can you expand the market or increase the target audience? You may do that by partnering with a large 3PL having an extensive network of fulfillment centres. Thus, being able to ship to new geographies or by introducing newer, fast-moving products.How to decrease costs – by exploring possibilities of tying up with major carriers or 3PL, try cheaper packaging options or alternate suppliers offering to ship the product to the customer directly. Furthermore, by showing more affordable products than existing suppliers, increasing efficiency by streamlining the operations through process reviews, and thorough education of fulfillment teams, one can decrease costs. Right Return Policy The reverse logistics process in eCommerce entails collecting a purchased product from a customer and putting the returned item in stock if undamaged. This process is a cost concern for an eCommerce business and, if mismanaged, will affect its profitability. Generally, a customer happy with a business's return policy will shop with the same retailer again. The reverse is also true: shoppers unhappy with the returns process will, in all likelihood, never shop with that business again. Hence, have a customer-friendly return policy and process returns quickly. Right Shipping Strategy Here are the following shipping strategies that one may use per one requirement. Several eCommerce businesses have successfully used many of the below-mentioned shipping aggregation methods as a strategy: Real-Time Rates Display rates in real-time directly from major carriers. Though this strategy will get you the best rates, it cannot be used as a promotional tool because there could be marked variation in rates. Benefits: Cheapest shipping option.You can offer to ship to new geographies at lower costs for expanding your business since you can take advantage of scale. Same-Day Delivery Same-day delivery requires a highly efficient fulfillment with equally efficient logistics operations. The disadvantage involves deploying plenty of resources, making the entire process costly. Benefits: The fastest delivery time will be the USP (unique selling point) to increase conversions. With increased conversions, one's reputation and brand image increase, leading to higher revenues.On the flip side, one should not adopt same-day delivery as the first go-to strategy. Instead, a two-day or overnight shipping would be a more uncomplicated strategy to implement initially.Once a robust team is in place handling the fulfillment efficiently and a capable, trustworthy shipping partner is signed up, you could then think of offering same-day delivery service to your customers. Free Shipping Most customers shopping online expect to be offered free shipping. Benefits: It fulfills the customer's expectations.It directly improves conversion rates, which builds customer loyalty and retention, thus leading to higher profits. Though free shipping is free for the customer, ensure that higher product margins cover this cost, else you will lose money on every sale. Flat Rate or Standard Shipping One way to avoid offering free shipping is to provide a flat rate or standard shipping to the customer. A flat rate charged for shipping any product ignores the type or size of the product or order value. Table rate shipping offers a low flat rate for shipping a product close to the fulfillment center, which progressively increases with the distance from the fulfillment center to the destination. Depending on the minimum order value or order quantity, one could also charge a flat rate. Beyond a specific order value, one could offer free shipping if the costs are covered in the sale price of the product sold. Alternative Shipping Strategies You could try any of the above strategies that you are sure will not affect your bottom line. You could also think of alternative strategies like combining various shipping strategies to improve customer satisfaction and profits. This kind of alternative strategy could lend itself to designing new promotions. Here are a few: Offer standard and express shipping with assured delivery time at checkout so that customers requiring fast delivery can opt for it. OfferfFree shipping is it drives customers to your site. At the time of checkout, ensure to offer express shipping at a higher rate for faster delivery.Offer Tracking services for shipments.Offer branded shipping. Ensure the customer can track product shipments by providing a tracking service. Today, most eCommerce shipping solutions and 3PL offer tracking services that you could leverage. Opt for Multiple Carriers Opting to partner with multiple carriers to provide eCommerce shipping has many benefits for online sellers. In addition to having the choice of the best services, it can also lead to lower costs. Benefits: Retailers are not dependent on a single shipping companyFirms can choose the shipping company with the best ratesFirms can choose the shipping company with the fastest delivery optionsThe order will always be delivered at the fastest rate and the cheapest priceRetailers can choose different shipping companies, depending on the nature of the goods What are the Benefits of eCommerce Shipping? Automated shipping process One can control the eCommerce shipping process with automated shipping. The system updates the inventory, the order tracking numbers, the courier reports, and the order delivery reports. An automated eCommerce shipping system replaces all manual processes, thus reducing human error and streamlining the fulfillment operations. An eCommerce shipping solution helps you import and export files, confirm/cancel orders, update inventory status, and choose the courier service. Sales channels integration Any eCommerce shipping solution will automatically sync the purchase orders with your sales to start further fulfillment operations. You can thus process the orders and provide the tracking details and status updates to your customers in real-time. Save time and money With an automated solution, you gain access to multiple channels and can offer faster deliveries at discounted eCommerce shipping rates enabling you to reach more customers. Non-delivery reports Orders not delivered and returned are a massive loss for any eCommerce business. Automated eCommerce shipping solutions can reduce this loss to a large extent. Reports detailing the delivered and undelivered orders are easily generated using automated solutions. You can even determine which courier/carrier partner was responsible for the delivered and undelivered packages and take action accordingly. At the end of each month, you may analyze which partner is diligent and saves money for you and which doesn't. Returns management For an eCommerce seller, handling order returns is the most challenging. An automated eCommerce shipping solution will help manage your returns. The system will effectively manage returns and make your customers' shopping journey a wonderful experience. Thus, an automated eCommerce shipping solution will help you with the following benefits. Quicker deliveries.Customer satisfaction, repeat purchase, and retention.Improved reputation and brand value.Higher sales and increased profitsSave time and money How to Choose an eCommerce Shipping Service for Your Business? Small eCommerce business owners must partner with a suitable eCommerce shipping carrier to offer cost-effective shipping solutions to customers. When choosing an eCommerce shipping service that is right for your business, one must consider cost, shipping schedules, and type of packaging.Customers must be able to track their orders.Have a return service that is friendly and efficient A 2018 research by Deloitte recorded that 72% of the shoppers said that free shipping was the number one reason to shop online. Today, many customers expect free eCommerce shipping for their online purchases with a one or two-day delivery time. Established companies could easily attain this goal, but this would be an enormous undertaking for small business owners. Though small eCommerce businesses may find it impossible to offer this strategy, by accepting the challenge of providing free eCommerce shipping, they could gain a loyal and grateful customer who will come back to shop repeatedly. eCommerce businesses must strive continuously to review their shipping and fulfilment strategy and processes to be successful. However, the overall process becomes easier to manage once you partner with the right shipping partners. Conclusion eCommerce is growing at a rapid pace. eCommerce Shipping is a challenging activity for any business, let alone an eCommerce business. Every business must find the most appropriate shipping strategy to adopt. It's not a one size fits all solution. Different companies have their challenges, and it will take time and continuous fine-tuning to arrive at the most optimum solution and strategy. Evaluate your strategy periodically to ensure that you continue to deliver the best service, with the best customer experience, as an outcome at the lowest price possible. WareIQ can help fulfil all your eCommerce shipping requirements in addition to a host of other services. WareIQ is an end-to-end solution for e-commerce fulfilment that allows you to ship 90% of your orders across India in 1 day – just like Amazon. Customers don’t want to wait for orders to reach them within 5-15 working days, instead by default, they end up comparing all shipping options to Amazon and expect their orders to reach them within 2 working days. Evidently, e-commerce stores that don’t offer this will lose customers to Amazon. To survive and remain competitive e-commerce businesses have to ‘deliver’ on this expectation. WareIQ’s technology prioritises speed and scale to give you complete control over your logistics and offer Amazon-like delivery to your customers. WareIQ unifies all your logistics operations into one platform so you can manage everything in one place – from inventory, orders, and warehousing, to shipping, delivery, and returns. No more wasted resources and fragmented data from a hundred different tools. WareIQ has shipping partnerships with all the prominent national and hyperlocal eCommerce courier service providers to enable last-mile delivery services for all eCommerce players. Our clients have an option to choose from 20+ shipping companies to enable faster delivery in 1-2 days. [signup] Ecommerce Shipping FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) What is eCommerce shipping?Transportation of all the products and services purchased online from a retailer to a customer's delivery destination is referred to as eCommerce shipping. What are the main steps involved in eCommerce shipping?• Order Processing• Order Packaging• Logistics and Delivery• Returns What are top shipping solutions for eCommerce?• WareIQ• ShipperHQ• ShipStation• AfterShip• ShippingEasy How is ecommerce shipping cost calculated?To calculate a shipping cost, simply weigh the product and use a shipping cost calculator. If your package is small yet heavy, ask for a shipping cost based on dimensional volume, which may be less expensive. When calculating postage by weight, remember to use the entire weight of the package rather than the weight of the product. How can I reduce ecommerce shipping costs? • Try to Reduce the weight of packages• Opt for right-sized packaging• Whenever possible choose flat-rate shipping• Keep monitoring rate changes• Use WareIQ shipping to cut costsRead about more ways to decrease shipping costs in detail. How does WareIQ help in eCommerce shipping?WareIQ provides end to end fulfillment services to eCommerce companies. WareIQ gives an option to the eCommerce & D2C brands to select from the best courier/shipping partners to optimize eCommerce shipping & logistics. Apart from that, eCommerce companies can do the following:• Track shipments in real time• Collaborate at shipping level with your courier partner• Predict anomalies• Catch delivery failures• Overcome escalations
June 03, 2022
What is a Retail Warehouse? Definition, Importance, Advantages & Challenges of Retail Warehouse in 2022
The world of retail warehousing is changing, constantly morphing to keep up with structural changes in the global eco-social system. Supply chain management is in flux. The constant changes here have amplified the crisis in supply chains. Demand is fluctuating YOY, and labour shortages have added to the turmoil. With all these in the larger economic equation, firms struggle to meet even basic demand-supply. When you factor in the eCommerce boom with the above, you realise that retail logistics are at a defining moment in their history. The Guardian reports that in the first half of 2021, a record six billion pounds were invested in U.K. warehouses. What’s more, the global warehouse automation market is expected to be just under 31 billion USD by 2025. As warehouses, the retail backbone, change, only one option seems feasible. We need to respect the change, welcome it, and adapt to it. We need to see the challenge as an opportunity. What is a Retail Warehouse? A retail warehouse definition includes the following elements: A retail warehouse involves storing a retailer's goodsA retail warehousing involves online order fulfillmentFor the above two points, warehouse space is used Retail warehousing is a part of the retail supply chain. It is an essential part of it, directly affecting the efficiency and quality of every part of the supply chain activity that occurs after it. To illustrate the above, imagine a disorganised storage process within the warehouse. Here, fulfillment will naturally slow down at the very first step due to the difficulty of product picking. On the other hand, imagine an optimised, tidy warehouse. Pickers can now quickly pick and pack without botheration. Warehousing can be done in one of the following ways, depending on the size of the business: Done from homeDone from the storeRented warehousing3PL warehousing Currently, warehouse renting or 3PL partnering are considered cost-effective and plausible based on average retailer size. [contactus_gynoveda] Why is a Retail Warehouse Required? Retail warehousing is required because it performs an essential function within the supply chain. It is responsible for crucial supply chain functions, including the following: Inventory StorageCustomer Order FulfillmentRetail Store Order Fulfillment Inventory Storage This is a mission-critical process within the supply chain. It begins with procurement, wherein goods are ordered from the producer. After receiving the inventory, the warehouse organises and stores it. The process involves unloading every item of inventory. This is then sorted by SKU and type. Inventory counts are done to determine a match between orders and delivery. Inventory levels are reestablished. Once this is done, the inventory is stored methodically within the warehouse. Inventory organisation is essential. Popular SKUs are kept within easy reach. All SKUs have their location, and different SKUs are stored separately. For example, finished goods are stored separately from production inventory. Customer Order Fulfillment A retail warehouse also function as fulfilment centres, in which capacity they are also engaged in storage, picking, packing, and shipping preparation. Maintaining order accuracy while keeping the operations swift is the challenge. The warehouse management system, eCommerce platform, and inventory management systems need to work in sync to achieve this. Retail Warehouse Order Fulfillment Order fulfilment is done in various ways by the warehouse: Retail warehouses often ship to retail stores rather than to the customer.DTC brands ship directly to the customer.Retailers can ship to both customers and stores. The Evolution Of The Retail Warehouse There have been four generations of retail warehouses so far. Retail warehouse generation 1: Conversion of industrial units for retail useRetail warehouse generation 2: Freestanding units built for a purposeRetail warehouse generation 3: Retail parks consisting of many units in oneRetail warehouse generation 4: Fashion parks that were more complicated than standard retail parks. As retail warehouses have evolved, the following changes have occurred within their setup: Well-trained employees: Due to the growing sophistication of the warehousing system, it is essential to keep employees well-trained. They need to know how to handle complicated software, like inventory management. They need to know when inventory needs to be restocked so as to always be ready for customer orders. Improved tracking systems: In the present generation of the retail warehouse, product scanning enables instant access to product information. Suppliers and customers can know important product information within seconds. Great storage systems: Modern tracking systems have made storage more efficient by optimizing available inventory spaces. This way, all the inventory space is utilized in the best possible way. The Developing Models Of Warehouses And Fulfillment Centers Warehouse management models are changing, and new bleeding-edge models are being born faster than ever before. Legacy systems are shifting, and departments are being completely redesigned around the new-age fulfillment centers. These strategies have completely changed how warehouses function. Some of them are: Digital Warehouse Twinning Post-pandemic, the world now realises the importance of preparing for an emergency. Using technology, you can create a “twin” digital warehouse to simulate your physical warehouse performance. Twinning your warehouse (digitally) can provide a 20%-25% boost in your efficiency. New strategies for your warehouse can be tested on its digital twin. This can help make efficient business decisions regarding workflow and floor plan redesigns via simulation. On-Demand Warehousing Businesses face sudden spikes and declines in demand. This is why on-demand warehousing is gaining popularity. This model helps businesses meet short-term and immediate needs. Companies can now meet rapid fluctuations in demand without rigid and long-term contracts. The Service Angle Of Warehousing And Distribution (WaaS, DaaS) WaaS and DaaS are the new stars of the retail sector. Labour shortages and supply chain disruptions are tackled by shifting their management to competent partners. SMEs can now grow quickly with minimum risk. Firms can now focus on their competencies, free from logistical nightmares. The Magic Of Micro-warehousing As eCommerce has risen, so have consumer expectations. The need for quick home delivery has led businesses to decentralise into physically separate, digitally connected units. This has allowed for same-day delivery. Underutilised physical stores are now used as “dark stores” that exclusively service online buys. Advantages of a Retail Warehouse For eCommerce Fulfillment Retail warehouses are great for eCommerce fulfillment. The reasons are many: They use existing facilities optimally.Urban areas that are struggling (like the loss of a mall) can be helped out.They can serve niche markets competitively.They offer high standards complying with industrial use as well as ample parking.Furthermore, they add to regional and local floor fulfillment centers. 4 Main Challenges of Retail Warehousing Faced by Online Brands If you want to scale your business online, retail warehouses are essential. As your business grows, warehouse management gets more complicated. As you scale, here are a few challenges you may face: Lack of Expertise Normal demand periods come with challenges of their own. When you are trying to scale, however, warehousing can overwhelm you. Small retailers often don’t know the nuances of warehousing as experts do. The lack of experience may mean retailers overpay for low-quality solutions. Easily preventable errors may cost you money, time, and resources. Similarly, badly-planned logistics can jeopardise company operations. 3PL experience and knowledge can be a life-saver in these circumstances. 3PLs can streamline warehouse processes and increase efficiency. Shipping protocols, last-mile logistics, and seasonal blockages can easily be countered by partnering with a great 3PL. Inefficient/Outdated Technology One of the challenges of retail warehousing that can be nipped at the outset is poor technology. Outdated technology can lower warehouse efficiency instead of increasing it. Poor technology may be better than manual operations, but it can’t scale to a high order quantity. To optimise warehouse operations, you need modern, relevant, and easy-to-learn Warehouse Management System Software. Invest in the best hardware (warehouse automation, robotics, labels, and barcode scanners). Also, invest in a modern IMS and WMS. Long-term, these will surely give you a high ROI. Inventory Management Inventory needs to be managed religiously for one reason - so that businesses can always cater to demand. When order volumes are high, inventory is replaced at a rapid pace. This means inventory needs to be replenished and scaled to ensure there is no shortage. These are the steps involved in successful inventory management: Regular inventory audits to keep accounting practices and inventory levels at pace.Regular replenishments to avoid stockouts and backorders.Demand forecasting, using trends and seasonality to hold enough ready stock and avoid deadstock.Keeping safety stock ready for emergencies.Keeping inventory counts current for all SKUs. Increased Order Volume Sometimes order volumes spike. To keep in tandem with high demand, an order fulfillment strategy that can manage higher than expected order volume is needed. To meet customer needs, you need proper warehouse workflow systems, staff, and storage space. If you don’t have these optimised, it may result in low order volume, low returns or worse. Study your supply chain before major growth periods. Ensure your processes, floor space, and storage space are adequate to meet all needs. Sometimes sudden, rapid growth calls for partnering with a 3PL. WareIQ Warehousing Solutions for Growing Brands Growing brands would do well to partner with WareIQ warehousing solutions. This full-stack e-com fulfillment platform helps brands increase sales. The cross-national network of last-mile couriers and fulfillment centers helps your business store goods closer to your customers. You are billed based on usage. The prediction engine based on machine learning optimises inventory placement and the design of the warehouse network. We offer the following services for growing brands: Logistics Consulting Logistics consulting will help you optimise both efficiency and cost of your operations. This service works for larger and well-established businesses by delivering a high ROI. Keep everything in-house with our logistics consulting services. Warehouse Management Software If you want to save time and money via automation, use warehouse management software. WMS gives you a high return on the effort by automating different warehouse processes. You can analyse the productivity of your warehouse by tracking data. Order fulfillment mistakes can be minimised using WMS. This software helps retailers manage day-to-day operations and run their retail warehouses efficiently. Third-Party Logistics Partnering with a 3PL is great, not just for DTC brands. It works well even for small businesses and large retailers, who can gain from the advanced technology and experience of 3PLs. 3PL outsourcing allows retailers to scale efficiently. They gain resources to grow their business with direct capital and real estate investments. Some retailers find it beneficial to store inventory in a centralised location. Others may find it better to distribute their goods across multiple warehouses throughout one nation. This lets retailers reach customers across pan-country locations efficiently. One route to do this is to buy or rent warehouses which require large investments. But the more efficient and cost-effective solution is to partner with a 3PL. 3PLs can minimise retailer costs by analysis, optimisation, and improvements in operations. 3PL also optimises time. For retailers who want to cut out planning, coordination, and execution of operations, partnering with a 3PL is a great way to go. Fulfillment Solutions WareIQ enables businesses to use cutting-edge technology to optimise their logistics. These include services from warehousing to shipping, including storage and fulfillment. Prominent growing businesses, as well as smaller retailers, can benefit from partnering with WareIQ. You can reach more customers with WareIQ using multichannel retailing, B2B, and retail drop-shipping. A network of fulfillment centers and warehouses help you achieve fast shipping affordably. Expect uniform operations and order fulfillment regardless of where you store your products. Best warehousing practices are observed in every warehouse. Use automation to the fullest to optimise, analyse, and make sense of your business. WareIQ’s top-class fulfillment solutions ensure that you are at the top of your game. [signup] FAQs What is a retail distribution warehouse?A retail distribution warehouse for a set of products is a warehouse or other specialized building that is filled with items (goods) to be redistributed to retailers, wholesalers, or directly to customers. Does WareIQ help with retail warehousing?Yes, WareIQ provides full-stack fulfillment services including retail warehousing where online businesses & eCommerce retailers can store their inventories before dispatching them to the end customers. WareIQ has a nationwide network of retail warehouses, and fulfillment centers to help the retailers store inventory closer to their customers How are retail stores different from ordinary warehouses?An ordinary warehouse is an allocated building that stores physical items until they are relocated, sold, or dispersed to other small enterprises. A retail store is essentially a location where things are sold to customers directly. What is the difference between retail and manufacturing?Retail is the process of selling products to customers. But, when something is manufactured through an industrial process in a factory, it is referred to as manufacturing. Is warehouse a retail business?Warehousing is not exactly a retail business. However, the concept of warehouse retailing does exist where goods are sold in bulk to give huge discounts as compared to traditional retail stores.A warehouse store, often known as a warehouse supermarket, is a food and grocery retailer that sells products at lower costs than a typical supermarket. These businesses provide a no-frills experience as well as warehouse shelving that is well-stocked with merchandise that is intended to move in large quantities.
June 02, 2022
Magento 2 Order Fulfillment & Shipping: 8 Easy Step Integration of Magento 2 Marketplace with WareIQ
Magento is an eCommerce platform that is open source and is coded using PHP, which aids in it being highly customisable by programmers who want to create their own eCommerce marketplaces and fulfill Magento orders. It was released in 2008 and has since been utilised by multiple household names around the world such as Samsung and Nike. Magento was acquired by Adobe in 2018 for $1.68 billion, which helped the platform grow at an even faster pace. The site has garnered popularity due to its easy-to-use, open-source nature and currently has over 100,000 active users and over 2.5 million downloads of the performance code. Magento roughly has a 2.32% share of the eCommerce market. In 2015, Magento released version 2.0 of its platform that consisted of multiple changes and improvements such as security and performance gains using PHP version 7+, minimised data table locking errors, company-grade database scalability and much more. Read further to get a better understanding of Magento 2 order fulfillment, integrating WareIQ with the Magento 2 marketplace and how WareIQ can benefit your business. How Can eCommerce Sellers Enable Magneto 2 Order Fulfillment & Magento Shipping? While Magento 2 doesn’t offer solutions for all the processes that order fulfillment encompasses since it is essentially a software platform that enables customers to build websites, users can fulfill Magento 2 marketplace orders by performing tasks such as order processing and automating processes through API integrations. To have a more cohesive experience, we recommend partnering with a 3PL fulfillment company like WareIQ, which offers the entire suite of fulfilllment services such as inventory management, picking and packing, delivery to the customer and reverse logistics, in one centralised platform. In addition, users can also integrate WareIQ with the Magento 2 marketplace for a seamle ss experience. Users need to identify their requirements and financial abilities to partner with a fulfillment company that is best suited to them. [contactus_lilgoodness] Benefits for Retailers who Use 3PL Fulfillment Companies for Magento 2 Order Fulfillment Ultra-Fast Delivery In the current eCommerce landscape, ultra-fast delivery such as same-day and next-day services has become a right rather than a privilege. To stay on top of their competitors, most 3PL companies constantly try to identify ways to provide the fastest delivery at the most competitive rates and the party that can take the most advantage of this are retailers and their customers. Brand-Specific Packaging If you utilise the fulfillment services provided directly by an eCommerce selling platform such as Amazon, chances are that they would want to abide by certain standardised packaging processes that highlight their brand, as opposed to the retailer. However, with 3PL fulfillment companies, users can choose from a vast array of materials, themes, logos and other customization options that will make their brand stand out from the crowd. Order Management Order management is the bread and butter of 3PL fulfillment companies. Facilities ranging from high-tech order management systems where past, present and future orders from various eCommerce marketplaces can be tracked and updated to smartly pairing orders with the closest and fastest shipping aggregator to enable the most rapid delivery to the customer are offered by most 3PL companies. All these services make order management more seamless and efficient. Transparent Payment Plans Due to the monopolised nature of most 1st-party fulfillment services, retailers are often surprised with new costs and more expensive services that they have to incur. However, since there are a vast number of 3PL fulfillment providers, all pining for your rupee, they are forced to offer the best services at the cheapest possible rates and also expose the fine print of every expense, upfront. They understand that if a customer has a bad experience, it’ll reflect poorly on them. Involvement in Decision Making 1st-party fulfillment services offered directly by eCommerce marketplaces often lack flexibility and do not include retailers in important decision making tasks. Conversely, 3PLs treat retailers like exactly what they are - paying customers. This helps sellers become more involved and can tailor every aspect of every service according to their liking. Multi-Channel Selling Retailers need to make their products and services visible to the most amount of potential customers as possible, in order to get conversions. They cannot do this by just selling on one platform and it becomes a lot harder to manage different accounts and update inventory and track orders, individually. However, retailers need not fret because most 3PL companies offer integrations with most large eCommerce marketplaces and offer software solutions to be able to track and manage orders and inventory in one master dashboard. Inventory Management 3PL companies are usually equipped with state-of-the-art Warehouse Management Software (WMS) to be able to organise and manage the inventory of their users. These highly advanced systems are able to perform tasks such as forecasting demand and supply levels for future dates and recommending the smartest placement of inventory to reduce delays and damage to the products. Smartly Located Fulfillment Centers Most 3PL companies have fulfillment centers and warehouses scattered in different locations of the country, specifically near areas of high demand or in close proximity to transportation facilities. Retailers who partner with them can choose strategic locations to store their inventory to enable themselves to offer the fastest possible delivery to their customers and mitigate any delays or errors. Enable Magento 2 Order Fulfillment & Shipping: 8 Easy Steps to Integrate WareIQ with Magento 2 Marketplace eCommerce sellers who seek to provide Magento 2 order fulfillment with WareIQ can immediately utilise our advanced portfolio of facilities such as a pan-India network of fulfillment centers, country-wide courier service partners and the ability to integrate WareIQ with the Magento 2 marketplace so that you can have access to our WMS from where you can manage inventory and track orders across multiple other marketplaces. Sellers can integrate WareIQ with Magento 2 Marketplace in 10 simple steps: Step 1: Logging In Once you get onboarded as WareIQ’s customer, you can log in to the WareIQ’s OMS (Order Management System) “https://wareiq.com/login/” using the login credentials shared with you by WareIQ’s customer success team. Step 2: Access to OMS Portal Once you log in to WareIQ’s OMS portal, you can see the dashboard that reflects important business metrics of your business like orders, revenue, shipments delivered, returns etc. The time period can be chosen as per your choice. Step 3: Adding Channels Click on the “Settings” button in the left navigation bar. Click on “Channels” to add or edit channels. The channels already added to OMS will show in the list. Click on “Add Channels” to add Magento 2 from the list of channels available for integration to WareIQ’s OMS. Step 4: Integrating with Magento 2 Go to Magento 2 & click on the “Integrate” button to proceed to the next step of Magento 2 marketplace integration with WareIQ’s fulfillment platform. Step 5: Getting Details from Magento 2 Follow the step by step instructions given on the page to get the “Store Name”, “Store URL” & “Access Token” from Magento 2’s account. Step 6: Going to Magento 2 Admin Login Page Enter the store URL in the browser. The Store URL is the URL that would have been specified during the installation. The default Admin URLs resemble this - “https://www.yourdomain.com/admin” Enter Store Name & password. Step 7: Generating the Access Token from Magento 2 Steps to be followed to generate the access token from Magento 2’s account: Log in to Admin and click System > Extensions > Integrations to display the Integrations page.Click Add New Integration to display the New Integration page. Source Enter a unique name (WareIQ) for the integration in the Name field. Then enter your admin password in the Your Password field. Leave all other fields blank. Click the API tab. Select the Magento resources the integration can access. You can select all resources (recommended), or select a custom list. Source Click Save to save your changes and return to the Integrations page.Click the Activate link in the grid that corresponds to the newly-created integration.Click Allow. The access token needs to be filled in the Access token field on WareIQ. Source Step 8: Enabling Fulfillment with WareIQ Copy & paste the access token, enter the store name & store URL and click on the “Submit” button to enable Magento 2 shipping & order fulfillment with WareIQ. Why should Merchants choose WareIQ as a Fulfillment Partner to Fulfill Magento 2 Marketplace Orders? WareIQ has a large amount of experience in the fulfillment and eCommerce space and also offers the services and technology to back it up. Equipped with a custom WMS, fulfillment centers across the country, partnerships with the biggest shipping and courier services and integrations with multiple online platforms, we can make your job of outsourcing fulfillment and order management a whole lot easier and cheaper. Some services that we offer are listed below: Vertically Integrated Full Stack Fulfillment Platform Other fulfillment and logistics players in the market have separate OMS & WMS. This is an issue for eCommerce businesses because there is a delay in syncing of orders in both platforms that creates a lag of 12-14 hours on order/inventory status in the 2 separate platforms. WareIQ is one of those fulfillment companies that provide an integrated OMS (Order Management System) +WMS (Warehouse Management System). This removes the 12-14 hours lag in inventory/order status to sync & hence removes the ambiguity in order status that ultimately leads to faster shipping as soon as the order is placed. Forward Supply Chain Assurance of Quality Facilities such as inbound management, coupled with rigorous product checks while complying with Legalities and Metrology ensure that quality levels are maintained. Intelligent Placement of Inventory We analyze factors such as the velocity of SKUs, the density of orders, seasonal demand & trends in different regions for intelligent inventory placement to reduce any errors or delays. RTO Shield Our custom RTO Shield limits the damage caused by return order requests by identifying orders of high risk and insuring them against losses to sustain the profit levels of customers. Personalization of Services We offer special branding kits and unique packaging, specifically tailored to follow the requirements and brand image of each retailer’s company. Reverse Supply Chain Re-Stocking of Inventory We protect retailers by protecting them from liabilities through Seller Protection Fund claims and simple settlement procedures. Intelligent RVP We help last-mile delivery services to check product quality by leveraging reference to-do’s and images, removing misplaced or damaged products and thus, reducing reverse logistics expenditures. Smart Disposal We assist in sustainably disposing of items in various segments such as electronics, apparel, food, etc. Recovery of Value We help in recovering the value of goods that are returned through upcycling and recycling, liquidation to the secondary market, donations and converting waste to usable energy which helps customers save money, time and resources. [signup] Magento 2 Order Fulfillment FAQs How can you get started on the Magento 2 marketplace?You can follow the below settings to use the Magento 2 marketplace for your business:- Make a note of Magento 2's server necessities- Opt for an online host and domain name- Download and Install Magento 2 on your computer- Customize your administrator settings- Download a theme you like and install it. What kind of businesses can create a website using Magento 2?Magento 2 is specifically tailored to work well for small businesses who don't have large tech teams at their beck and call. Additionally, you can always make changes whenever you desire and there is a lot of flexibility and customization built into the system. Does Magento 2 offer its own fulfillment services?The magento 2 marketplace has plugins and APIs that offer various fulfillment capabilities. However, to get the best and most cohesive fulfillment services, it is best to opt for a 3PL company if you need Magento 2 order fulfillment. Can you still sell products on other platforms if you integrate WareIQ with the Magento 2 marketplace?Yes. WareIQ offers integrations with a host of eCommerce selling platforms and integrating with the Magento 2 marketplace doesn't inhibit that. What services can you expect when you use WareIQ for Magento 2 order fulfillment?WareIQ offers a whole slew of features ranging from inventory management and storage to order delivery and reverse logistics.
June 02, 2022