The complications that multichannel retail can bring to order management

Order Management

Physical store and eCommerce operations are two distinct processes, and for many merchants, handling both has become increasingly complex. In particular, order management is a challenge that many retailers have to deal with on a daily basis. While giving customers the ability to shop from any channel (online, mobile and in stores) is paramount to ensuring a convenient shopping experience, there is no denying that it can lead to a logistics nightmare.

Warehouses and fulfillment centers have traditionally been crucial to keeping inventories stocked and shipping orders in a timely fashion. However, online sales add a new element to the mix. Having distribution networks based around a merchant’s headquarters isn’t enough, and if they center their delivery chains around a specific region, they may run into trouble when trying to fulfill customer orders from a different geographic location.

Some merchants handled this problem by keeping internet and physical sales separate, utilizing a different set of warehouses and delivery centers for each. However, this can create another set of problems with communication between the two operations, particularly as retailers begin to integrate online and in -store activities. For example, many merchants are beginning to offer “order to store” and “order online, pickup in store” options. Having separate order management systems would complicate these programs.

Fortunately, the integration of offline and online operations can be made drastically easier through solutions such as SalesWarp. SalesWarp’s order manager enables merchants to consolidate orders from all web stores, marketplaces and in-store point of sale (POS) systems, automatically routing each order to the appropriate warehouse or fulfillment center while maintaining real-time inventory for all channels. From there, merchants can track every step of the order status, from unfulfilled to complete.