If you find yourself at the outset of a new ecommerce venture, then, after acquiring an effective inventory and creating an ecommerce site upon which to advertise and ultimately sell it, the next step is to plan out an ecommerce fulfillment strategy. While the most important thing to predict success in ecommerce is to offer attractive products to a distinct market niche, the logistics of actually delivering these products to your customers can be a process which can sink your venture if it isn’t done right. Indeed, this takes a great deal of careful planning and deference to the type of ecommerce business that you are running. 

Tough Competition 

The reason why tripping up at this stage of the process can be so disastrous is that the game has already been made exceptionally competitive where order fulfillment is concerned. Shipping and Handling of Texas, a firm specializing in ecommerce fulfillment for a diverse array of clients, note that the massive international ecommerce sites (Amazon, primarily) have absolutely changed the game for everyone else and, to put it bluntly, made things a whole lot harder. This is not only because companies like Amazon sell absolutely everything but also that their ecommerce fulfillment strategy has ushered in the age of 2-day, and even same day, shipping. The result, in short, has been that customers now expect the utmost efficiency in the processing and shipping of orders. 

Now, it is unlikely that you’ll be able to compete with Amazon’s massive warehouse infrastructure but, if you’ve cornered your niche properly, then you have probably found a specialized product to sell on your ecommerce site that customers cannot get on Amazon. Congratulations, you have passed the first stage; the next one is to match, as close as possible, Amazon’s speedy delivery. 

Planning an Order Fulfillment Strategy

If you are going to do that effectively, you need to plan out an ecommerce fulfillment strategy. And if you’re going to do that at all successfully, then you’ll need to select a workable order fulfillment model to follow. 

Conder Location

Even if you don’t operate a brick-and-mortar store, the physical location where you fulfill orders is everything. You should consider where most of your customers are located. If they are geographically dispersed, then, chances are, you are successful enough to expand your order processing and warehouse locations to be within a reasonable range of your customer base. 

You also need to consider shipping zones and the extra costs that are incurred when you ship over a wider area. You might have to strategically weigh this up against the costs of expanding into new shipping locations – whatever works out cheaper. 

The Power of Software 

One of the things which slows down ecommerce fulfillment is all the stock taking and administrative tasks necessary to keep inventory effectively updated. There are a range of software solutions that can help here, especially those which automatically manage orders and update the relevant people, avoiding manual uploads or duplicate data entry. This process can certainly be streamlined, so it is wise to investigate what can work for you. 

Offer Free Shipping (If You Can) 

This one is a big “if”, but if there is any way you can offer free, as well as speedy, shipping then this can have a massive appeal to customers. Sites like Amazon have made many customers come to expect this, so the potential drawbacks of not offering it could outweigh the amount you would save. In short, offer it if you can – perhaps on orders over a certain amount. 

Having made all these considerations, you can start formulating a winning order fulfillment strategy.