It's difficult not to enjoy the feeling you get when you receive a delivery. The item is probably something you've been waiting for and have anticipated since you placed your order. Although your work is done once you complete your transaction, there's an entire team behind preparing your package and making sure it gets to you in a timely manner. Fulfillment is one of the most crucial elements of any subscription-based company, as it encompasses a number of steps from order management through the actual shipment portion of the process. Let's take a look at how businesses focusing on a continuity model can keep their fulfillment procedure running smoothly:
Make it a priority
It's common for ecommerce organizations to let certain duties fall by the wayside while they pay close attention to others. Anyone can see how this situation is problematic. Unfortunately, the task that is often an afterthought is the fulfillment process. This is bad news for subscription businesses, as clients depend on efficient order management and delivery to make the experience worthwhile. Failing to provide that service element can determine whether or not a customer returns in the future.
It's crucial for organizations to make fulfillment a priority. One approach is to track certain metrics that point out the origins of potential mistakes or lags in the system. Practical Ecommerce suggested companies pull the following figures on a regular basis:
- Amount of time to fill an order.
- Error rates on orders pulled.
- Error rates on products shipped.
- Actual cost of shipping versus price charged.
- Turnaround time for orders from time received through shipment.
Gathering this data will help businesses more quickly discover what is holding up their fulfillment process. Leaders can then introduce productive solutions.
Keep customers informed
Consumers place orders for a reason – either the product is something they need or want. Yet, no matter the nature of their purchase, they'll follow the progress of their transaction from stage to stage, according to The Wall Street Journal. Failing to deliver their package in a decent amount of time could result in them sharing their negative opinions about the company itself via social media or word of mouth. Either way, a subscription business's reputation could be seriously affected.
To keep the fulfillment process as efficient as possible while also maintaining customer's happiness, organizations should keep consumers informed of their order. This means letting people know the reason for any delays the delivery faces and updating them on the actual date and time they'll receive their package. Not only will this keep client's satisfaction levels high, it will hold subscription enterprises responsible for keeping their word.
"Subscription companies can outsource their fulfillment for increased efficiency."
Work with a partner
Organizations with a subscription element have a lot of responsibilities on their hands. These enterprises need to focus on recruiting and retaining valuable customers, while also managing their social media accounts and maintaining inventory. All of these obligations can become challenging to keep track of if a company attempts to do it on their own. Employees and leaders can become spread too thin, leaving people feeling overworked and underappreciated. Luckily, businesses don't have to complete all of these elements on their own.
Instead, subscription companies can work with a third-party service provider, like SFG. SFG provides organizations with the assistance they need, offering a team of well-trained and experienced professionals to do the job. In addition, SFG can integrate their comprehensive order management software into a business's current solution to increase efficiency without needing to undergo a time-consuming implementation process. SFG's relationship with OSM Worldwide gives subscription companies access to less expensive shipping options that will keep package contents safe and delivered quickly. With SFG's help, leaders and executives can shift their attention back to more important tasks, like improving mobile capabilities for their website, giving consumers better customer service and other client-facing obligations.
Keeping the fulfillment process on track is one of the more critical responsibilities for subscription-based companies. By making the task a priority, keeping consumers in the loop and working with a third-party partner, organizations can ensure the procedure is as efficient as possible and open to necessary changes in the future.