Things aren't going to slow down for online retailers anytime soon. Statista projects 47.7% growth in U.S. ecommerce transactions, with sales projected to exceed $740 billion in 2023.
And yet, many companies still rely on manual inventory management processes like spreadsheets on clipboards. Under such labor- and time-intensive systems, errors — and headaches — can be crippling.
If you've gotten used to certain tools and systems, it can be easy to lose sight of the big picture, especially if you're scrambling to keep up with booming business. What should you prioritize with regard to your order management strategy? If you're ready to move away from the outmoded tools holding you back, what else is out there?
Let's take a step back and consider these order management best practices.
"Use automated inventory management tools to keep track of everything in one place — and free up your time."
Rely on automation for inventory management
Automated inventory management tools can keep track of everything in one place — and free up your time for more important matters. For instance, IndustryWeek followed one operations manager who went from spending 85% of the day on data entry tasks to spending 30% on data analysis, simply by switching to an automated system.
A tool like SFG's FlexOMS can update inventory in real time and provide greater visibility for all stakeholders. Plus, a robust order management system can help you achieve inventory optimization, which has a direct positive impact on the bottom line.
Utilize forms that promote data accuracy
Customers make errors on about 5% of all ecommerce order forms. With a good OMS, you won't have to accept incomplete or inaccurate forms.
Incorporate address standardization into your shipping fields to flag and correct errors in real time. Use tools to automatically calculate shipping and sales tax and authorize credit cards to avoid billing delays. And let your customers know their data is safe thanks to strong encryption.
Prioritize the customer experience
Of the U.S. customers polled in a 2018 PwC customer experience survey, over half felt that most companies need to improve their customer experience. But 63% were willing to share more information in return for a positive experience.
Customers crave simplicity and transparency. With the help of an omnichannel strategy and email automation, you'll effortlessly engage customers across multiple channels and provide real-time updates. So that you better understand the customer lifecycle, maintain an updated customer database and don't miss the opportunity to collect feedback.
Streamline your order fulfillment process
Your order management strategy should provide visibility and efficiency on the warehouse side as well. Empower your team to move expediently from order inflow to fulfillment. Use an OMS that generates pick tickets, categorizes assets and locates products so your team can more efficiently process and pack orders.
To see how FlexOMS can help you complement your order management strategy, contact SFG today.