5 Optimal Ways for Handling Fulfillment Logistics during Festive Season
For businesses handling orders that need to be fulfilled, the holiday season tends to require a lot of planning and preparation. With an influx in the number of orders, it is only natural that having the right tools and plans in place can help make the entire experience smoother. The best way to prepare for the upcoming peak season is by planning ahead and avoiding the 5 biggest fulfillment logistics mistakes presented below.
1. Inventory organization
Perhaps the biggest mistake one can make in fulfillment logistics is having an unorganized inventory. This could lead to several different issues. Firstly, you will not be clear on the quantity of each product available at any given moment. As a result, customers could purchase items only to have their orders canceled. The wrong item may also be sent out, or your orders will be delayed by the extra time required for packaging.
Inventory Mismanagement is a challenge often faced by companies of all sizes, and it could lead to a loss in profitability and a negative review. By preparing your inventory ahead of time, you can avoid this problem during peak season.
2. Planning ahead
Apart from organizing your inventory, you will need to make plans ahead of time with the shipment companies you are using and with your labor force. The holiday season typically requires a greater show of hands to avoid delays. Hiring temporary staff or knowing what overtime will be necessary can help.
You will also want to contact the shipping company you are using to verify the expected delivery timeframe. Fulfillment logistics is about gathering as much information about what to expect ahead of time so that when the time comes, you are well prepared and you can set proper expectations for your customers.
3. Account for Delays
Customers now tend to expect products to be delivered faster than ever before. As part of fulfillment logistics, you’ll need to verify the expected time frame for deliveries, as well as account for any delays in shipment. During peak season many carriers will be struggling to handle all of the shipments. By planning hours ahead of time, and knowing what the delays might be in the shipment of your products, you can ensure that the timeframe you are providing your customers will be accurate.
Getting your shipments to your customers both faster and within your pre-determined timeframe for delivery can be an integral part of improving your customer satisfaction rates. Customer expectations on how you deliver their goods are very high. The only method to meet these expectations is to adopt the latest delivery strategy to scale your operations.
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4. Optimized Route Plan
Optimizing routes is a key element of fulfillment logistics as you will want your warehouse and fulfillment centers11 to have items in easy-to-reach locations. By arranging the location products should be shipped out from, you can improve the fulfillment time. The closest the warehouse or fulfillment center is to your customer the faster their order will reach them.
Manual planning is a common reason for this problem, so you are much better off using intelligent route optimization software to ensure your orders are sent out in time and from the correct location.
5. Updated Technology
Long past is the days when fulfillment logistics relied on manual planning. Nowadays, an array of machine learning and AI-powered software are available to further optimize your business. Using outdated technology could lead to inventory mismanagement, inefficient route planning, and even problems in data storage.
By using the latest technologies, you can improve the speed and efficiency of your orders shipping out. An AI-based route optimization software can help you plan the most efficient routes for effective fleet management making deliveries on time.