Order fulfilment often serves as the base for customer satisfaction in ecommerce, as this phase covers the processes from placing order to delivery of the item. The order fulfilment can be considered as both a goal and challenge for the company. Mostly customers care about the delivery speed only, so if you happen to take many days to deliver the product then next time the customer might choose your competitor over you. This is exactly why the order fulfilment is a challenge for a business, especially for ecommerce stores. In a good order fulfilment process, the item ordered will arrive at the customer’s doorsteps in time, it will be free of any damages, and most importantly will include the correct items ordered.
So, how can you improve the order fulfilment process of your ecommerce store? Let’s take a look into some important factors to do so: -
1. Seamless Integration
These days ecommerce stores do not manufacture their own products, but rather source it from several distributors and suppliers and store it in warehouses. Then, when orders are placed, the items are collected from this warehouse and drop shipped to the customers. There are also cases where the item is directly drop shipped to the customer by the supplier itself. As these are the cases, it is really important to seamlessly integrate with your supplier via an order management software or any other software that serves the purpose. This will help keep your system and your supplier’s system connected and thus result in increasing the delivery speed.
2. Order Visibility
Once you are connected with your suppliers in real time, you must ensure that you can see all the processes that occur and other related things in the supply chain. In layman’s terms, what this means is that both you and your distributors must have access to the same details and information. This might include tracking the inventory level, the list of items available, etc. Most importantly, your customers must be able to access this crucial information while searching for an item online. This aspect of order visibility plays a very important role in customer satisfaction and the order fulfilment process.
3. The Right Shipper
Now that your back-end processes are set up and you are connected with your suppliers, you must take care of the biggest challenge in an order fulfilment process; the shipping process. If your shipper turns out to be underperforming in making shipments then your ecommerce store will be the one in danger and not the shipper. You must conduct regular audits of your shipper to check whether it meets the standards and to keep a track of late shipments, damaged shipments, etc. If the shipper has a record of many shipment delays or damaged deliveries then you should consider changing your shipper before things get worse.
4. Exception in Order Management
You can also enable exception-based order management by utilising order visibility. Exception-based order management simply means that instead of telling your customers that your item delivery will get delayed, you make the required changes in shipment and make it so that the product arrives at the promised time. Although this might cost you a bit, but it is much better than losing your precious customers over a delivery issue. This will also give you an opportunity to rise your brand loyalty among regular customers and also increase the chance of your customers purchasing more frequently.
5. Warehouse Locations
All the ecommerce customers desire only one thing from an ecommerce store and that is fast and cheap delivery of their products. One way of achieving this is by setting up warehouses in various locations so that you can deliver your customer’s order from the nearest warehouse. Or you can also choose shippers who perform quick shipping, but this might be a bit costly. Now, a smart way to tackle this issue is to employ shipping algorithms which will identify the best shipment methods and routes for your delivery. This way you won’t have to spend a lot on shipping and you can also deliver the right products.
6. Customer Relations
Through the whole order fulfilment process, you must be in close contact with your customers. For this purpose, you can assign a dedicated team that gives your customers real time update on the status of their delivery or convey any sort of inconveniences that have occurred and see to it that you don’t lose your customer. In the status update, you can include everything from order received and in process to order shipped and order delivered.
7. Return Policy
There might be many refunds, but how you treat a return and refund process is what might decide the customer’s next steps. If you are to say that this item cannot be returned due to some cause which might not seem legitimate then your customer will leave you. But at the same time if you were to smoothly process the refund and accept the return, your customer will build a sense of trust with you and might purchase a better product from your store itself.
You must think of the order fulfilment process as a way your customer’s heart, i.e., a way to customer satisfaction. As an ecommerce store owner, it is your duty to make your customers happy in all the steps of the order fulfilment.
Are you facing any difficulties in integrating your ERP system with your ecommerce platform? x2x eCommerce is here to assist you in solving your problems with reliability, stability, consistency, and affordability. To know if we offer integrations that support your software and for further details, be sure to reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-929-3266 and also get a complimentary 1 Hour Demo of the integration services.