How Can You Improve Your Order Fulfilment Process?

How Can You Improve Your Order Fulfilment Process

Customers no longer depend on marketing for information on new ways of solving problems, and gone are the days when they relied on sales to navigate the pros and cons of products they were considering. Buyers are rewriting the rules. 2023 may not be the year of flying vehicles, but it’s undoubtedly the year of the empowered customer. Customers have higher expectations when it comes to order fulfilment, waiting for the purchase to land at the front door almost instantaneously. The rise of e-commerce has transformed the supply chain, heightening expectations for speedy delivery, easy returns, and overall convenience in the shopping experience. 

Industry brands and logistics managers are now faced with the challenge of setting up new supply chain fulfilment strategies to meet the increased demand for quick delivery. Technology helps streamline all stages of the order fulfilment process, making decision-making more efficient and improving the customer experience. Automation, augmented reality, data technology, and artificial intelligence are examples of technologies driving order fulfilment. Your business must regularly evaluate existing methods and technology to improve the process from order placement to delivery. 

Improving Order Fulfilment in A Technology-Driven World 

Human concerns aren’t separate from technological advancements. As your organisation seeks new ways to adapt, technology isn’t the greatest challenge. As a matter of fact, implementing technology into inventory management has helped the retail sector enhance efficiency, reduce costs, and create better customer experiences. A positive shopping experience is directly influenced by order fulfilment, so if you want repeat business and word-of-mouth recommendations, fulfil orders correctly and in a timely manner. Most companies have multiple systems that have a role in fulfilment, which offer real-time insight into order flows, warehousing, and shipping. 

Order fulfilment isn’t the most glamorous aspect of running a webshop, but it’s a function that directly impacts your company’s bottom line. Unexpected challenges may arise that can prevent your business from scaling and orders getting to customers on time, such as not having expertise in-house. Understanding the ins and outs can be overwhelming, which is the reason why many rely on Monta’s fulfilment for the benefits of expertise, lower costs, and quicker delivery times. Becoming a fulfilment expert isn’t why someone starts a business. 

Business owners must focus on translating their brand’s identity into an in-person experience, as consumers are demanding authentic experiences. Incorrect or late orders can bring about complaints, and while unhappy customers can be detrimental to your business, treat them like an opportunity, not a problem. If you want to arrange your own shipping, apply the following technologies to your facility: 

Integrate An Order Management System

As the name suggests, an order management system (OMS) is a way to manage the lifecycle of an order, simplifying the process from order placement to delivery. It’s basically a system that merges orders from multiple sources into a single shipment; the workflow involved can differ based on your company’s needs.

You can have a snapshot of data about inventory, and customers can see when an order will arrive. The order management system identifies the fulfilment centre closest to the customer with available inventory and sends order information directly to that centre so that the product is shipped in a timely manner. It’s key to fulfilment, so it’s included with every service you take advantage of. 

Opt For Logic-Based Shipping

More sophisticated fulfilment providers have logic-based technologies that increase efficiency by automating operations, therefore, decreasing failed delivery attempts.  These technologies cut expenses by determining the optional shipping carrier and method for achieving the customer’s goal, working more intelligently. It’s possible to orchestrate every component of the order fulfilment process, from interacting with customer accounts to billing providers.

Logic dictates the pace of fulfilment within the supply chain process, and given that time is of the essence, it’s crucial to reach the desired levels of satisfaction in today’s customer-centric world. The newest software packages really make a difference in terms of optimising shipping costs and transit times. 

Use Electronic Data Interchange 

Electronic data interchange, or simply EDI, involves electronically communicating information that was traditionally communicated on paper, of which examples can be made of advance ship notices, purchase orders, and invoices. The retail industry has long adopted electronic data interchange as the preferred method for exchanging business documents with trading partners.

Of course, each merchant is free to set their own requirements in the data field. Different types of systems can be implemented to suit the business’s needs, such as direct EDI (point-to-point), EDI VAN (value-added network), and web and mobile EDI.  

Protect Customers’ Card Data 

Finally, yet importantly, it’s essential to adopt data security standards for safe payments. E-commerce payment processing encompasses multiple elements like digital checkpoints, payment processors, specialised bank accounts, security, and fraud prevention methods. All of the aforementioned components come together to ensure that online payments are processed securely and efficiently. You must follow technical and operational standards to secure and protect card data. The higher the volume, the stricter the requirements. It’s recommended to ask software vendors if their systems are certified by a third party or simply compliant. Being non-compliant has many consequences, such as fines, penalties, and losing the ability to process card data.  

The Bottom Line 

At present, customers expect the experience from certain services to meet and even surpass the level of another service. In other words, we live in times characterised by instant gratification because customers have become accustomed to expecting their packages to arrive very quickly. Huge marketplaces started this trend by implementing same-day delivery. Automating as much as you can of the order fulfilment process helps save costs, improve working conditions, and make operations safer. Making trade-offs visible to customers and giving them the chance to make an informed selection is paramount to achieving your fulfilment potential. 

All in all, advances in technology are altering the way supply chains operate, which is good news for business owners. There are many advantages to using technology like augmented reality for order fulfilment, such as the ability to increase workflow efficiencies. Technology for order fulfilment will continue to expand the boundaries of speed and efficiency to drive performance for years to come. Outsourced fulfilment can help you free up time, money, and hassle so you can focus on what matters the most.

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