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A Coordinated Team

Coordinated Forward and Reverse Logistics Make eRetail Fulfillment Easy

What goes up, must come down. Or, when you’re talking about eRetail, what goes out often comes back. That’s why you need coordinated reverse logistics experts that can handle both forward and reverse logistics.

It’s easy to think of eRetail fulfillment as little more than tossing an item in a box and slapping a label on it. The truth is that it’s far more complicated when you’re dealing with hundreds or thousands of different items.

Your customers have a frictionless sales experience when they’re not worried that returning an item will be a huge undertaking. Over time, this kind of thing creates enthusiastic brand ambassadors.

The Importance of Reverse Logistics in eRetail Fulfillment
When you send an order out into the world, there’s no guarantee that it’s going to stay with the person who ordered it.

They might receive the item and realize it’s too big or the wrong color, or worse, that your order has been incorrectly packed! This is when your customer service skills are really put to the test. This is when you need the right reverse logistics experts for your eRetail fulfillment.

With the right 3PL team in place, that return is as painless as possible. You did have your forward logistics team include a return label that will help your reverse team track the order as it travels back to your returns center, didn’t you? It’ll help you get a credit or exchange to your customer faster. And when it comes to logistics, faster is always better.

Improving Your eRetail Fulfillment Accuracy

Even when your forward and reverse logistics teams are in sync, there’s a lot of room for mistakes.

Improving accuracy should always be a goal because it means less effort on the back end and ultimately, lower costs for you. You have options to improve the pick accuracy of your eRetail fulfillment and reverse logistics experts

For example, you may choose to have items that are frequently sold together to be combined into a kit. Kitting turns multiple items into one, so a picker only has to find a single box rather than all the individuals, each one adding some amount of risk of a mispick to the equation.

Although modern order fulfillment equipment greatly minimizes pick errors, they still happen. Kitting is one way to help reduce the chance of errors for your customers.

Sometimes the Whys Are the Most Important Data Point

When your forward and reverse logistics teams are communicating well, you can do even more with data. For example, you have the potential to greatly reduce your returns rate. All you have to do is have someone ask something like, “Why is this product not up to snuff?”

The answer might surprise you, especially if you ensure that the customer doesn’t feel like they’re having to explain themselves or you won’t accept the return. This is a vital data point that can help both sides of your eRetail fulfillment team. The why could be as simple as the color isn’t what the customer expected.

These are easy fixes, but both you and yoru reverse logistics experts have to know there’s a problem first!

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