With the continued rise of e-commerce, consumers are getting used to being able to buy whatever they want whenever they want and receiving those goods promptly, often within a day or two. This trend isn’t slowing down. If anything, the demand for faster and more reliable shipping is going only to increase as more transactions happen online.
This increased demand creates challenges for not only retailers but also logistics companies. Developing and managing a multi-channel fulfillment system is no easy feat. The need to effectively and efficiently manage your fulfillment process shouldn’t only be a priority for logistics businesses, in the future, but one you pay attention to today.
According to a recent study of e-commerce, sales online will reach nearly $500 billion by 2018. This creates challenges for companies that need to manage these on-demand fulfillment needs, too much inventory, excess warehouse space, wasted truck runs are examples of the challenges we often see.
Logistic companies should take a look at their fulfillment strategy and spend some extra due diligence on three key areas to keep up with the e-commerce demand, Inventory, Information, and Infrastructure.
You need an operation that’s built from the ground up for multi-channel fulfillment, with one master inventory for all your channels. You should be able to use sales forecasts and historical data to figure out what products you’ll need for each channel, where you’ll need them, and when. This is where data has power as a predictive model for your business.
Warehousing provides a central location for receiving, storing, and distributing the products that you need to ship. Here at Langham, we are excited about our current warehousing efforts and the benefits they bring. Fulfilling all your orders from the same warehouse and same inventory pool will save you time and money.
Along with e-commerce and fulfillment, another challenge is being able to be agile enough to scale and pivot quickly. A Transportation Management System (TMS) that allows you to have the correct information when you need it is vital. TMS allows you to move freight with efficiency, reliability, and cost-efficiency.
Whether you run your logistics or work with a partner, using a single information system to manage inventory for all your channels will put you a step above the competition.
With the retail world changing so rapidly your company can no longer be complacent with your fulfillment operations. Today’s consumers expect a lot more with very high demands on promptness and accuracy of their orders. Mastering your inventory, infrastructure, and information strategies can solve the headaches that are coming with today’s fulfillment world.
If you are having trouble with your company’s fulfillment needs, we’ve got you covered. Contact us HERE.