As consumers, we often get anxious seeing holiday displays months before the actual holiday. Who isn’t tired of hearing about or seeing a “Christmas in July!” promotion!? However, for merchants it’s never too early to start thinking about your holiday fulfillment capability, or any peak season that’s important to your business. With so many product options available to consumers today, and the world becoming a more global marketplace for buying and selling online, local merchants in the US should consider this time of the year their chance to spread their roots globally by increasing their product fulfillment capability.
1. Ability to Scale
One great example of a company taking its show on the road is ProRodeo Gear, a popular e-commerce website that sells rodeo merchandise. Working with Rakuten Super Logistics U.S., A3 Merchandise, managers of the ProRodeo Gear site, have been able to ramp up during certain times of the year by scaling services as needed.
Rakuten Super Logistics provides unlimited warehousing space that enables busy eTailers like ProRodeo Gear to stock up on peak holiday merchandise, without incurring the ongoing costs that would be required if they did it on their own. The ability to economically scale up or scale down as needed is one of the many benefits of outsourcing your e-Commerce product fulfillment through a quality third-party provider.
2. Ongoing Inventory Management
In the coming weeks, the ProRodeo Gear website will begin selling for the “Superbowl of Rodeo” – the National Finals Rodeo – that takes place in early December in Las Vegas. With more than a hundred different types of products and merchandise, fulfillment plays a crucial role during this time of year when product fulfillment, shipping and customer service need to be no less than perfect.
During this time,the Rakuten Super Logistics SmartFill™ system gives the staff at A3 Merchandise the ability to monitor their inventory levels with real-time order data and inventory counts. The system also provides comprehensive reports that can help identify top sellers or even slower moving items. This bird’s eye view allows eTailers to quickly respond to trends and meet customers’ needs by having the most popular merchandise on hand at all times.
3. First-class Customer Service
Integration also makes the difference when it comes to gearing up for e-Commerce fulfillment during a certain time of year or special event. Knowing your customers and building on their trust ensures that you’re prepared to scale your delivery capability during peak seasons and that you understand the general demographics and behaviors as well as being preparing to troubleshoot any issues that come up.
Boiling it down to the basics, e-Commerce product fulfillment may not seem so complicated: “A customer places an order on our website, we get an email the order went though and we don’t touch it after that – we see that it’s shipped – that’s what we look for when working with a logistics partner,” said Jon Elliott, Partner at A3 Merchandise.
This is what makes for good logistics and product fulfillment – not only the trust between the merchant and their fulfillment process, but when the process is painless for all parties, it’s what keeps customers coming back – and for us, this makes our work… fulfilling.