How to optimize your e-commerce logistics

A well-organized e-commerce logistics will play a significant role in the success of your online business. It can help you increase your conversion rate and improve your customer satisfaction rate as well as stall your e-commerce activity.

Managing your e-commerce logistics is an important pillar of your business. Because it touches several links in your e-commerce chain (purchases, online sales, order picking, delivery, customer service …), every point of contact must be treated to guarantee a quality service to your customers and to ensure to keep a good e-reputation of your company. E-logistics is the key to delivering a successful online shopping experience to your customers.

But first and foremost, it’s important to maintain good relationships with your suppliers. Even if the purchase price is an important criterion, be sure to choose your suppliers based on their reliability and trust. If they consistently deliver you late or worse do not deliver at all, change suppliers!

The time of assessment has come! To optimize your logistics in 2018, we deliver our 8 e-commerce tips. Follow our guide!

1 / OPTIMIZED MANAGEMENT OF YOUR STOCKS

We can not tell you enough, good inventory management will ensure good sales e-commerce. If you are already using inventory optimization software, consider using the tools available to help automate some tasks such as replenishing your inventory.

This functionality is essential to avoid stock-outs and also saves time on a daily basis for your logistics teams, especially suppliers. This system makes it possible to trace all the items that have reached their minimum stock threshold, that is to say the threshold from which the inventory of a warehouse must be replenished. From this list, your teams can place purchase orders or create stock movements to replenish a warehouse from another warehouse in case you manage multiple storage warehouses.

2 / PRODUCT AVAILABILITY

The availability of products on your online store will have a direct impact on your conversion rate. Several questions may arise to effectively manage the display of products on the site. Do I have to display the quantity of stocks available on the site? Do I have to hide a product on the site when it is out of stock? Do I have to order the product even if the product is out of stock? Study the strategy to adopt for each type of product: product in the top of sales, product end of life, product sale, product promotion, seasonal product, product pre-order … Plan enough stock for top sales and for items with strong seasonality for example.

For products that are out of stock and awaiting replenishment, you can offer an availability alert on the material master. This feature offers the advantage of being able to continue to reference this type of products on the site and especially to offer the user to leave his email to receive an alert when the product will be back in stock. With this system, the contact is informed in real time when the product is available again on the site and can then place his order on the site if in the meantime he did not find the product elsewhere. In this sense, the availability alert will help to retain your contacts by returning them to your site. Beyond its practicality, this service can also fill the disappointment of the user who discovers that the product he wants to order is out of stock on the site. It’s a kind of “last chance” for him to get the product.

Avoid displaying off-stock products on the home page or at the top of category pages. If your visitor clicks on a product then on a second and a third, and the three products that he clicked are out of stock, it can very quickly annoy him and lead him to leave the site to see your competitors.

3 / ROLL OUT YOUR OLD STOCKS

Do you have a large stock of low turnover items sleeping in your warehouses? To avoid storage costs, consider starting commercial operations on these products to speed up their sales (promotions, destocking, private sales …). By disposing of your old stock, you will be able to free up space and store new goods. If you use inventory management software, you should be able to easily find products with low stock turnover.

4 / ORDERS WITH MULTI-SHIPMENTS

Do you receive orders with products that are out of stock and products in stock? Rather than waiting to receive the products out of stock from your supplier to deliver your customer, consider shipping the order in several times. Thus, you will be able to deliver your customer with the first part of the order containing the products in stock. And upon receipt of purchase orders, you will be able to send the second part of the order to your customer.

This multi-sending system certainly has a cost that will be supported either by the merchant site or by the customer but it offers advantages for the user who wishes to be delivered quickly. In the case where the cost is borne by the customer and for the purpose of transparency and customer satisfaction, you must mention at the time of online order that the basket includes products out of stock. This will give the user the choice to wait until the merchant receives the product out of stock to be delivered the entire order, or choose to be delivered in several times for an additional delivery cost.

5 / A DELIVERY TO THE MAP

Do not lose any more sales because of a cost of delivery too high or delivery options considered unsatisfactory by your Internet users! Offer your customers the choice between several delivery methods: home delivery, relay packages, in-store, by appointment, by courier, delivery on Sunday or evening.

No need to remind you that the Hamon law requires the delivery of the order within the deadlines indicated on the site. Otherwise, you have 30 days from the online order to deliver your customer. Be careful, however, not to tarnish your reputation because of delivery problems. To do this, be sure to choose your carriers and your delivery solutions because most online buyers consider the online merchant as the main responsible in case of delivery problem!

6 / TRACKING PARCELS ON THE TRACK

When ordering online, it is important to inform the customer of all stages of delivery from order preparation to shipment. Once delivered to the carrier, the parcel usually includes a tracking that tracks online routing of it during transport. Some delivery solutions even offer the customer to change their delivery address the same day if he thinks he is missing during the delivery.

Most delivery services allow the buyer to follow his order during his shipment. An email sometimes coupled to an SMS is sent to the customer to inform him of the shipment of his order and provide him with the number of the package that allows him to track his routing.

7 / RETURNS MANAGEMENT

To avoid having a high rate of returns of articles, it is essential to detail all the information on the product in the article sheet and to give a maximum of practical indications, such as if the article size small or far too big. You will avoid returns of products because of information that could have been mentioned on the website.

In addition, clearly indicate the process of returning items to your e-commerce site. Your customers must find on the site your product returns policy (time, cost) and the description of the procedure to return items they do not suit them. To facilitate returns and follow-up, the customer area must also include a system to manage and track product returns online.

To facilitate returns, you can for example offer a free return in store if you have a network of physical outlets back to your online store.

8 / THE OUTSOURCING OF ITS LOGISTICS

Are you wondering about the outsourcing of your logistics in 2018? In addition to saving you time and money, this choice can be a solution to help you optimize your supply chain. By working with a logistics professional, you can decentralize this part of your business and focus on the essentials of your business, which is online sales.
If you consider this option, we advise you to choose a logistician specializing in e-commerce and who can interface with your back office. Here too you have to choose a trusted partner!

As you can see, the success of your online store will depend in part on the management of your inventory. Your e-commerce logistics must be in your top priorities!

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