E-commerce has entered a new era: one where almost anyone can start their online shop, and still do relatively well despite fewer resources. For online sellers and other e-commerce entrepreneurs, one of the most important aspects of success is the integrity of the delivery. After all, if the customers don’t receive the items they paid for in one piece (or at all!), then there’s a major problem that needs fixing.
Many business owners have struggled to figure out how to create an effective shipping system that ensures the safety of goods and protects their reputation as honest businesses, which in turn drives repeat purchases from customers who know they can trust them with their money and products without having to worry about receiving a damaged product or not getting what was promised to them at all (in some cases). In this article, we’ll take a look at common logistics problems many online entrepreneurs face, and what action can be taken to protect against these problems.
Order Processing Delays and Cancellations
Online stores have adopted an omnichannel format where they sell their products in multiple avenues. However, their system of processing those orders might actually just be one. This can result in delays in the order processing system, which makes the buyer receive their item late- or not at all. This is especially important if you’re selling a high-ticket product as it can mean losing out on a sale and the customer’s attention for months to come (if not forever).
The good news is that there are ways to fix this and reduce the time it takes for your online store to process orders. The most obvious, yet most effective one, is to adopt an efficient shipping system. Make use of the most reliable delivery services, preferably one that displays the progress of the delivery. Another is through reducing the strain on your staff by leaning on one source of sales- perhaps the channel where you receive the bulk of your sales. This way, you can better serve the users on that platform, and increase your sales through sheer reputation on that specific platform.
Inventory Management Shortcomings
When stocks are mismanaged and damaged, they can ultimately affect your profits. Damaged goods can result in unavailable stock, which then leads to either cancellation or refunds. Storing items in inventory for too long and can also result in products going bad. Especially when there isn’t any strong temperature control (tempco) or similar elements to where you’re storing your items. The best way to avoid these issues is by putting in place an effective inventory management system (IMS).
It will help you keep track of inventory levels in real-time as well as know where the problems are so that they can be solved before they become a problem for your business growth strategy. An inventory management system helps in eliminating problems by maintaining the integrity of your inventory database that allows you to manage your inventory more effectively than ever before and make sure no product goes missing or is damaged during transportation or storage at any time in its lifecycle.
Inability to Adjust to Order Volume Surges
Market demand goes in surges, and the inability to adjust and accommodate these surges will spell a company’s doom. If your payment gateway has low transaction capacity, then it might lead to a lot of problems for your business and it could even ruin your brand’s reputation if not taken care of on time when the season is over and other consumers start complaining about your slow processing of payments at the end of the year.
In business, you can’t afford a backlog of inventory when it comes to products on sale or being shipped out for next season’s items because the revenue will be low if there is no demand at all from customers and shoppers during the holidays. A well-planned holiday event promotion strategy must focus on shopping cart abandonment while maintaining a balance between achieving conversions and minimizing the risk of missed purchases or abandoned carts due to lack of availability or poor product selection, as well as improving the customer experience in each stage of the purchase journey, including pre-sales, shipping, and post-sales services.
These three issues might seem like rather simple issues, but for small e-commerce businesses (or even a major company!), failing in any of these three can become a major hit. That’s why it’s critical to be able to tackle these hurdles head-on. If a business can make it through these common problems, its chances of success will be significantly higher.