Posted by Laura Hills, VP of Marketing
If you have a retail business, chances are you have, or are looking to have, an online presence as well. In today’s world, it’s mandatory to have a website for branding and exposure if you want the business to grow. And having a shopping cart enabled website to allow you to sell product is an easy way to expand your presence on a national or even global scale with minimal capital investment and overhead. But having a website alone isn’t always enough.
Adding additional sales channels, like selling online, selling on Amazon or any number of the popular sales channels, brings a lot of advantages in terms easily expanding your presence, but it can also bring a lot of headaches if your sales channels aren’t managed properly. This is where an inventory and order management solution can help!
The Benefits Of Using An Inventory & Order Management Solution
Implementing an inventory and order management software solution can help you streamline your business processes and position your business for greater success in the future.
One of the biggest ways you can benefit from a solution is through the automation of your order fulfillment processes. You want to have as few steps as possible between the time a customer places an order to the time they receive their order to ensure timely delivery and make your customers happy. Therefore, you need to eliminate as many manual steps as possible because those steps can not only affect your delivery times, but can also lend to manual entry mistakes which can lead to even longer delays.
Placing orders through suppliers and receiving the inventory back into your operation is also made easier when working with a solution that allows you to manage suppliers and send Purchase Orders. You can set up product low level alerts within the system to set automatic re-order points – this makes purchasing products even easier! And this same method applies to products you drop ship as well.
From an inventory standpoint, having a solution in place is an absolute must, especially when working in multiple sales channels. Having the right amount of inventory on-hand at all times is a delicate balancing act. Having a product that ‘sells out’ is good in one way as it proves that it’s a hot item. On the other hand you never want to run out of stock and lose a potential sale. Carefully tracking your inventory not only gives you insight to your customers’ preferences, but helps in determining how much to have at all times.
Finally, having an inventory and order management solution can help you manage all of your sales channels in one solution, giving you the ‘big picture’ in terms of how your business is performing. It’s much easier to analyze trends and buying patterns and make strategic business decisions when you have a single vantage point to see everything from a revenue standpoint, purchase orders, refunds and anything else related to your bottom line.
So whether you are adding a new sales channel for the first time or expanding into more sales channels, life is so much easier when you have an inventory and order management solution in place. Automating the order fulfillment and inventory management processes makes just about everything related to your business as streamlined and simplified as possible so you can focus on the more important things – like growing your business!
Learn more ways to drive your retail sales growth in the ‘7 Retail Operational Improvements That Make A Difference’ eBook.