Why Web Order Fulfillment is Critical to Retailing
Retail is no longer strictly a brick-and-mortar business. No matter what kinds of products you sell, from children’s toys to services, you will undoubtedly have some customers who want to buy from you online. And why not? It’s convenient.
According to Statista, there were 3.9 billion internet users worldwide in 2018. That’s up 400 million from two years before. Other internet usage statistics include:
- 345.66 million in North America in 2018
- 8 in 10 Americans shop online
- 3.77% of shoppers use a mobile device to find products
- Retail is at an all-time high in total sales
- Average e-commerce revenue per shopper in the U.S. amounts to $1,804
We could uncover a lot more statistics on e-commerce in 2019, but you get the point. E-tail is growing, but it’s already a solid business. Brick-and-mortar retailers are behind the curve if they do not already have an online presence.
Simply having a presence is not enough, however. Retailers of every stripe need to engage customers better, manage their inventories better, and offer ways for customers to order and purchase online. That’s why web fulfillment is so important if retailers are going to remain competitive.
6 Ways to Make Web Order Fulfillment Matter in Retail
Web order fulfillment should be a big part of your retail business today. That doesn’t mean it should take over your brick-and-mortar business. But let’s be honest. If you woke up one day and found that your online sales were outpacing your brick-and-mortar sales, would it matter? Would you begin to invest in online retail technologies? And what if the cost of acquisition for your online customers was cheaper? Would that matter?
These are the questions retailers should be asking. So in that spirit, we offer the following six tips to help improve your web order fulfillment:
- Fulfill your online orders from any warehouse, store, or a combination
- Pull orders automatically from the location nearest the customer
- Track the status of all web orders from the shopping cart to the door–in real time
- Set rules that pull orders from the location with the highest inventory count when the order is made
- Pull orders from the location with the slowest rate of sales instead, based on your forecasting
- Make transfers easy by pulling orders from a centralized location or shipping directly from the right location based on your rules
Web order fulfillment leads to happier customers and more profitable retailing.