eCommerce is a fast growing industry. Due to the fast expanding market and favourable policies, it has presented a lot of options to sellers. In fact, ecommerce has been one of the most promising business options for everyone. It doesn’t ask for much, but helps you reach out to the world. However, there are a few things that you need to consider when it comes to running an ecommerce business. One of the most important of these things is the supply chain management process.
Supply chain management process in ecommerce has the potential to build your business or destroy it completely. For this reason, there is no way that you can ignore it. There are no doubts about the fact that ecommerce is helping sellers reach out to the far off locations effortlessly. Be it through business to business or business to customer, it is enabling people to expand their portfolios and help them reach out to the world.
But, while all of this seems quite enticing, the supply chain management process is what makes ecommerce a tough nut to crack. Most online sellers just jump into the world of ecommerce because of the lucrative opportunities. They are fascinated by the idea of making money and reaching out to a vast audience online. However, they miss out on the details.
Sellers somehow find a supplier and start selling online either through a marketplace, social media or their own website. In the haste of making money online, it is easy to miss out on the details. And this is where the issue crops up.
The Supply Chain Management Process in eCommerce
The point is that every ecommerce business goes through the supply chain management process. And there is no escaping from it. You have to source the materials from the suppliers and deliver it to your customers. The choice of storing inventory depends on you, but even without that supply chain management process has to be considered. Its importance in ecommerce is the highest.
You might have seen many online sellers going out of business within a few months of their launch. Ever wondered why? The answer lies in the supply chain management process!
So, if you’re new to the supply chain management process, you might ask, where does it begin? You might have several questions in mind about the origin of the process and how to do it right. Don’t worry, we’ll answer all of that here.
To understand the supply chain management process, let’s take you through the complex process of ecommerce.
- As you begin your ecommerce journey, you do all the research and discover your options.
- The next task is to partner with the right people in your way. Look for the right products from the right supplier. This is where the supply chain management process first begins. The moment your supplier starts providing you with the raw materials or finished goods, you need to step in for the supply chain management process.
- Once you start receiving the goods, the next step is to store them in your warehouse. The inventory management system is executed at this step.
- Lasty, when you start marketing your business and receiving orders, the next step is to pick, pack and ship the orders to the customer’s doorstep. This is the most important part of the online business. If you haven’t been paying attention to your supply chain process since the beginning, it will reflect in this part of the business.
What is supply chain management in ecommerce?
If you’re producing your goods, the supply chain management process begins right there for you.alternatively, if you are sourcing your products from manufacturers, the supply chain process will begin from there.
In other words, from producing to selling and distributing, the supply chain process spans across a wide range of activities. It is the sum total of activities in your ecommerce business. The supply chain management process is important for a variety of reasons. Be it reducing costs, providing better experience to customers or more. It is the answer to a majority of your problems in ecommerce.
No business in their right mind would ignore supply chain management. Because honestly even the smallest mistake can cost your customers and revenue. Moreover, it can also damage your reputation in the market. In the next section, we will break down the need for supply chain management in ecommerce.
Why Do You Need Supply Chain Management in eCommerce?
Supply chain management can have drastic effects on your business. If you think that you don’t need it because you’re running your business from your apartment, you’re mistaken. Supply chain management is a crucial part of any ecommerce business, no matter what the size. It is a habit that needs to be cultivated right from the beginning.
Small businesses often make this mistake. Therefore, they end up ruining their efforts and get lost amidst the market crowd. While those that take effective measures regarding supply chain management process are able to make the most of the following parameters-
Supply chain management processes reduce the costs in business. It streamlines your existing business expenses. In other words, it brings far more transparency in your entire online business and inventory. Therefore, you are clearly able to see where your majority of costs are going. You might find key areas where costs optimization can help you save more.
Optimized Order Fulfillment
Order Fulfillment is a time consuming task in ecommerce. But it determines the success of your business. If you are able to fulfill your orders efficiently, it means that you are doing well. On the other hand, if you are struggling with order fulfillment, you might nor even realize how it ends up damaging your reputation. Optimizing the supply chain management process helps you deliver faster and more efficiently.
Better Operational Efficiency
Operational efficiency is one of the key factors in ecommerce. If your operations running in the backend are not efficient, you will end up losing your business. In other words, it will create a lot of inconsistencies in your overall business. Mistakes will crop up and ultimately hamper your customer experience. When you pay attention to your supp;y chain management process, you can realize the key areas where operational efficiency can be achieved.
Greater Customer Satisfaction
Of course the supply chain management process results in greater customer satisfaction. When everything is right at the backend, the people facing portions of your business will automatically be bright. Supply chain management process can have all the answers to your customer satisfaction issues. And as you improve it, your overall customer experience will also improve.
How to Improve Your Supply Chain Process in eCommerce?
The first step to making your business better is to improve the supply chain management process. but , don’t worry, it isn’t that difficult. If you’re taking the right steps from the beginning, there’s nothing stopping you.
Find the Right Suppliers
The first step is to find the right suppliers for your ecommerce business. It helps build the foundation of your online business. The supply chain management process will strengthen only if you find the right people to partner with. Good suppliers will ensure timely delivery of products. Moreover, these products will be of high quality. Thus, customer satisfaction will be guaranteed. No doubt that you need to take consideration of the costs. But, focusing entirely on low costs and neglecting the quality of products will land you nowhere.
Don’t Rely on One Supplier
If you’re relying on only one supplier, you’re risking your business. No matter how good your supplier is, always have a backup plan. This will ensure that you have a fallback in case of any adverse situations. Sometimes due to some unforeseen events, your regular supplier might not be able to cater to your product requirements. In such situations, your products will go out of stock. But, this is only when you don’t partner with other suppliers. Remember that the ultimate goal of your business is to cater to the demands of customers.
Establish seamless communication channels at all levels of your business. This will ensure that you are able to get a clear picture of your supply chain management process. Many times inefficiencies crawl up due to lack of communication. Therefore, whether it is with your warehouse staff or courier company, make sure you have a clear communication pathway.
Take Advantage of New Technologies
Technological advancements are the key to gaining an edge in the market. Make sure you take advantage of upcoming technologies for the supply chain management process. This would ensure that no human errors occur in the system and the processes executed are accurate.
Make Your Return Management Seamless
Return management is one of the key factors that is responsible for customer satisfaction. Your return process must be seamless. The supply chain management process must be optimized in a way that returns are minimized for any business.
No matter what the size of your business, make sure to put your best step forward withs supply chain management process. Remember to tie up with reliable partners, even when it comes to shipping. Dash101 is a one stop logistics platform that can help you make your supply chain management process effortless. It can help you ship with 8+ courier partners at the lowest costs along with helping you manage your business efficiently!
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