Today’s business world is constantly changing, and it’s no different in e-commerce fulfillment.
To stay on top of things, you need to be up-to-date on the latest trends. By keeping track and knowing what’s what, you’ll be in a better position to make decisions that are right – and profitable – for your business.
Trends in e-Commerce Fulfillment
- Your website is always open and customers expect extended service too.
Once you start doing business online, you have the potential to sell to customers worldwide. Make sure that your suppliers, fulfillment centers and customer service arrangements are prepared to respond to buyers who are placing orders from other time zones. Carrier companies are responding to this trend by offering extended hours for pickups and deliveries to accommodate their customers. Fulfillment companies are starting to offer seven-day-a week service as well to match retail store hours.
- Same-day, in-store pickup is becoming more popular.
Retail customers have become comfortable with the notion of using their devices (smartphones and tablets) to conduct their own research on items before buying them. Customers can use them from anywhere they can get online to compare features, benefits, check reviews and compare prices before making a buying decision.
Savvy retailers are making it easy for their customers to check item availability online before they head out to pick up an item. The next logical choice in the process is to allow a customer to select the items of their choice, buy them online using either a credit or debit card and simply pick them up the same day. It’s quicker and more efficient, and the customer doesn’t have to worry about the item being out of stock when he or she arrives.
- Customers want a positive experience, and they will speak up if they don’t get it.
Today’s customers know that they have multiple businesses competing for their dollars. They are firmly in the driver’s seat, and they know it. Each step along the way in a transaction can be monitored, and if a customer is not happy, they are not shy about going onto social media to voice their displeasure.
Free shipping is a feature that will help to win customer loyalty but they also want other types of options, such as choices about where their packages will be delivered (home, office, local post office), gift wrapping, personalization, when it will be delivered (same day, next day, standard delivery, delivered to a different address).