Retailers unanimously agree that system and channel-wide inventory visibility is key to their success and their ability to serve customers adequately. However, comparatively few retailers actually have the solutions in place that grant them this system-wide visibility, and even fewer are actively synchronizing inventory across all of their different channels. This impacts their ability to execute and can result in operational failures, missed sales and angry customers. Continue reading
It seems to me that when many retailers (usually small to medium) start looking for a back-end management system (what I’ll call it for now) to improve their operations, they seem to want to search for an ERP system. Why is that?
An ERP system is typically NOT designed to meet the needs of today’s modern retail and online businesses. Yet, that is what so many retailers search for when they’ve reached the stage of their business where small business solutions and manual processes just aren’t going to cut it anymore.
Whenever someone buys anything nowadays they always check out multiple websites and local retail stores.
Shoppers use every connected device they have to do their research; desktop computers, connected games consoles, smartphones, laptops and tablets. Personalized websites are particularly popular, with 55% of shoppers saying that it is easier to find interesting products on websites that are personalized. 84% of buyers admit to checking for both positive and negative reviews on social media and review sites. Some people will still visit real-world stores to eyeball the items they are thinking of buying and these stores are in no danger of mass closure as long as they use technology to adapt.
The retail environment has changed so drastically in the last couple of years – many customers have come to expect delivery within two to three days, and in some cases the very same day. In the eyes of customers, speed matters.
In order for sellers to meet these lofty expectations, they need to leverage order fulfillment tools that will help them quickly and accurately pick, pack and ship goods. For retailers, these tools allow them to operate more efficiently, processing orders quickly and getting more done per day. For customers, it often translates into improved order turnaround time – when retailers get the package out the door quicker, it also tends to get to shoppers’ doorstep faster as well. This leaves merchants asking the question, “how do I speed up order fulfillment?” Continue reading
Omni Channel Pain Point No. 4
Our pain point for February is one that we hear often from retailers, especially those selling on multiple channels: “I’m juggling inventory to avoid overselling a product.” The term ‘juggling’ is something you want to hear a clown say in reference to the bowling pins he’ll be tossing around at your son’s birthday party. ‘Juggling’ is definitely not something you want to hear from a retailer, specifically not from the person in charge of allocating inventory for a retail organization. Unfortunately, many retailers struggle to maintain cross-channel inventory levels. Continue reading
SalesWarp attended the National Retail Federation’s BIG Show last week in New York. There are big trade shows and then there are BIG TRADE SHOWS. NRF was definitely the latter. With thousands of retail professionals flooding the area around the Javits Center and two full floors devoted to the EXPO hall, NRF was the biggest trade show SalesWarp has attended so far, and a major event for the retail industry as a whole. We came prepared to hand out our signature “OmniChannel Pain Relief” bottles of M&M’s and talk to retailers about speeding up order fulfillment. We had the opportunity to show off SalesWarp’s mobile warehouse features with our interactive warehouse shelf, tablet, and barcode scanner demonstration. Continue reading
When retailers think about omnichannel order fulfillment, the complexities of all the different order, delivery, and return options may come to mind. With retailers molding their business to better serve customers whenever and wherever, it has never been more important that retailers have deployed order management software to facilitate turnaround time and better utilize all available resources. Continue reading
Unless you’ve been hiding in a cave this past year (or a crevice with James Franco in 127 Hours – a great movie by the way if you haven’t see it), you have definitely seen how retailers are continuously striving to deliver that omnichannel experience customers expect.
With the rapid improvement of eCommerce platforms, channel management software and order management systems to name a few, retailers have been able to accomplish this across their online channels, but in many instances, are still failing to incorporate the POS system, or in-store experience. This means that they have not yet achieved a true 360 degree view of their customers or their overall retail operations. Continue reading
In three weeks I will hop on a train in Baltimore, bound for New York and the National Retail Federation’s annual Expo & Convention. Nicknamed ‘Retail’s BIG Show,’ this is definitely one of the biggest and most influential gatherings in retail, known for hi-tech demonstrations and a bird’s eye view of where the industry is going in the next year and beyond. This will be SalesWarp’s first year on the BIG expo floor and considering how quickly retail technology is advancing, I’m pretty excited to see what’s in store.
The author vs. an Amazon robot invasion
Omni Channel Pain Point No. 3
Omnichannel retailing…we’ve heard this term over and over this past year and it really comes down to one core deliverable…a seamless customer experience. But how do you begin to deliver this in an industry that has been turned upside down by technology, processes and, above all, by how the customer is shopping…how they want, when they want, and on what channels they prefer? How do retailers, especially those with both physical brick and mortar locations and online channels deliver this seamless “omnichannel” experience across locations, systems, departments and the supply chain? Below are some areas retailers can look to improve on in order to begin to deliver a seamless customer experience. Continue reading