E-commerce is a highly lucrative business domain, which is the reason why almost every business owner is keen to try their luck. But before you think about the grabbing opportunity, you need to know the challenges as well. The biggest challenge, when it comes to e-commerce operations, is order fulfillment.
If you are unable to deliver orders on time, your customers will surely move over to another provider. Additionally, this elevates the risk of returns and reputational damage. This is something you cannot afford to happen in a competitive landscape. Hence, it makes sense to go the extra mile for accelerating order fulfillment. Here are some killer strategies that can help you on this front.
Opening micro-fulfillment centers
Distance between the warehouse and delivery location is the biggest barrier that e-commerce sellers face. More and more of them are now investing in micro-fulfillment centers (MFCs) rather than relying on the traditional distribution centers with large footprints. The smaller warehouses are strategically located and easier to manage.
The idea is to store goods in facilities near the consumers and reduce the order delivery time and costs, which will obviously improve the fulfillment process.
Leveraging brick-and-mortar stores
If your business has brick-and-mortar stores as well, you are in a better position when it comes to fulfilling orders on time. Leveraging store network and inventory for eCommerce orders is a good way to augment fulfillment, increase speed, and expand product assortments.
Not only are you able to satisfy customers with speedy delivery, but also have better revenue opportunities with a bigger product line. Also, you end up saving on warehousing costs.
Partnering with reliable third-party logistics providers
You may be unable to match the current consumer expectations for speed with your distribution infrastructure’s capabilities. In such a situation, partnering with a third-party logistics partner like Shipping Vegas can be a better match. It is important to be judicious about the choice of the provider.
For example, if you are a global seller, you will need to collaborate with someone who handles international shipping. Check aspects such as consolidation and repackaging, tracking, shipping speed, and locations to ensure that you can depend on the shipping partner for keeping your process on pace.
Investing in warehouse automation
Another smart strategy to speed up your e-commerce fulfillment process is an investment in warehouse automation. With robotic order picking, you can expect to bring speed, efficiency and precision in storage, retrieval and transportation of the products.
Warehouse automation also addresses the problems of labor shortages and fills operational gaps for the business. The chances of errors in packing and picking the products for delivery are also reduced to a minimum.
Accelerating order fulfillment is something you cannot afford to take frivolously because it can make or break your e-commerce business. It enhances operational efficiency and supports competitive differentiation as well, which can make all the difference to your long-term growth.
The ability to match customer expectations by delivering on time every time gives you a clear advantage over the competition. So this is a worthwhile investment that you should certainly make for your business.