Businesses today, from the smallest startups to industry fixtures, all work to establish a leg up the competition. That might mean the latest and greatest new product, a unique niche in the market, an engaging marketing campaign, or it could be your dedicated fulfillment practices.
While the world of warehousing and moving product might not seem like a competitive advantage the surface, it is in fact tremendously beneficial to the continued success of your business. the other hand, poorly executed or inefficient fulfillment can derail your entire company. Essentially, everything revolves around your ability to receive customer orders, manage inventory, ship product, and provide top-shelf service to your customers year after year.
What is fulfillment in business?
For those new to the game, a simple definition of fulfillment is everything that happens from receiving a customer order to delivering to their doorstep. Included in this process is the entire warehouse element of receiving, storing, and managing inventory; and then shipping product to customers while maintaining tracking all the way to delivery.
Indeed, a strategic fulfillment component is like the lungs of your company, allowing you to grow and evolve with customer demand and industry trends. Let’s look at some of the benefits of perfecting your fulfillment process:
Product availability awareness
When a customer orders a product from your company, they expect it to be available. That means you need to be absolutely positive what is your warehouse shelves, when to reorder, and how much is coming and going. Positive customer experience is key.
Fast delivery matters
Customers today demand and expect lightning fast delivery of product as well. A smoothly running fulfillment system ensures you can meet that demand, keep customers satisfied, and increase online shipping options for continued business growth.
Organize inventory for speedy handling
The best way to ensure efficient movement of product is to classify it into specific groups, including highest volume, customer demand, newest product, or seasonal. Intentionally store these items in a warehouse location that allows fast picking, packing, and delivery to an outgoing truck. Less time fulfilling orders means more of them go out the door.
Automation in fulfillment is more than simply employing robotic product pickers or conveyors to trucks. It includes many other variables such as improving inventory scanners, using smartphone apps to track inventory, or designating specific names to products based how fast they move. This will also cut down company warehousing costs, establish efficient and reciprocating relationships with vendors, and provide real-time metrics to help other departments develop and execute a solid strategy for growth.
In the end, time saved through an improved fulfillment process can be leveraged in other areas of the company such as expanding marketplace presence, boosting consistency in various branding channels, and solidifying trust from a loyal customer base. A sound fulfillment element virtually guarantees more satisfied customers and reliable, steady business growth.