Customer Experience and Modern eCommerce Fulfillment

by Carolina Cano-Espinoza | Customer Satisfaction, eCommerce Fulfillment, Outsourced Fulfillment

 

Focus on Post-Purchase Customer Experience 

Gone are the days of focusing solely on pre-purchase customer experience to ensure success in the eCommerce world. While an enticing brand and user-friendly shopping experience can lure customers into new purchases, your store’s ability to retain profitable repeat customers is dependent on the post-purchase customer experience.

Key factors affecting the customer’s post-purchase customer experience include:

  • Shipment tracking information available to the customer
  • Time it takes the customer to receive their order
  • Accuracy and condition of the shipment received
  • Ease of initiating and completing a returns process

Fast-growing online retailers take advantage of modern eCommerce fulfillment that alleviates the headaches stemming from post-purchase customer experience management. This includes order processing, pick and pack, shipping, and returns. For many retailers looking to streamline the post-purchase experience and ensure a high level of customer satisfaction and customer lifetime value, outsourced fulfillment is the answer.

What is Modern eCommerce Order Fulfillment?

Online order fulfillment is the complete process of an order placed on an eCommerce shopping platform through delivery to the customer’s doorstep. When busy eTailers attempt to manage the complexity of fulfillment logistics it can quickly become too much, and leaves little time to focus on delivering an exceptional pre-purchase customer experience. After all, a lot goes into order processing and fulfillment. The figure below illustrates key components of modern eCommerce fulfillment, which becomes a comprehensive solution for the post-purchase customer experience.

Key Components of Modern eCommerce Order Fulfillment

Strong competition in both offline and online retail no longer leaves room for errors or missed expectations. With the current booming eCommerce market, brands must deliver in every aspect of order processing to ensure growth and long-term success. A reliable partner specializing in order fulfillment for online retailers can support the back-end of your business to get your products to your customers in an efficient manner.

Incorporate Outsourced Fulfillment into Your Post-Purchase Customer Experience

A successful post-purchase customer experience relies heavily on laying the foundation with your fulfillment partner from day one. Taking the time to really understand how outsourcing fulfillment can impact your business and allowing your provider to understand the ins and outs of your operations is vital.

Here are some of the critical functions of outsourced fulfillment that become an extension of your eCommerce business:

  1. System Integration- your fulfillment provider seamlessly integrates into your shopping cart platform (ex. Shopify, ShipStation)
  2. Freight Management- your fulfillment provider handles domestic and international inventory movements from your manufacturer to the fulfillment warehouse
  3. Inventory Management- your inventory levels are monitored and you are alerted when it’s time to restock, through your order management portal
  4. Fulfillment- your provider receives your order through the system integration, then picks, packs, and ships order to your end customer
  5. Returns Management- your provider works with you to determine how returns are managed and handles return inventory and reshipping

Ensure Key Components of eCommerce Order Fulfillment are Met

It all starts with choosing the right fulfillment model for your eCommerce business. Depending on where your business is and where you hope to take it, the right fulfillment model can play a huge role in accelerating or inhibiting your business goals. In today’s third party logistics (3PL) landscape, there are four main fulfillment models to consider, all which present their own pros and cons for retailers looking to outsource fulfillment.

The graph below summarizes the pros and cons of each of the main fulfillment models. In our recent eBook “How to Choose the Right Fulfillment Model for Your eCommerce Business” we identify how different fulfillment models can impact all aspects of your business, including: sales, marketing, operations, customer service, and accounting.

Take Steps to Enhance Your Customer Experience

Retailers looking to enhance their customers’ experience can take the first steps in exploring optimized fulfillment to fit their unique needs. The team at Rakuten Super Logistics prides themselves in helping online retailers grow their business and reach new heights.

We understand the many fulfillment models available in the 3PL space and recognize RSL may not be the best fit for every retailer, every time. We’d love to take some time to learn about your business and current operations to help you determine what fulfillment model is best for you.

Give us a call at 866-955-7793 or fill out a Get Quote form to have a fulfillment adviser reach out and help you find the best outsourced fulfillment option for your business.