How Do I Process an eCommerce Order?
The pandemic has transformed the online retail landscape forever. Even as we wave goodbye to restrictions, customers are still relying on online shopping more than ever. As a result companies all around the world have had to up their eCommerce level.
Because of the fierce competition, learning how to effectively process an eCommerce order is crucial to the success of an online business. A second-rate order processing system could deter customers from buying from you again, as dozens of competitors are just a couple of clicks away.
What are the main steps of processing eCommerce orders?
You’ve done arguably the most difficult bit, which is selling a product. Congratulations! Unfortunately, the hard work doesn’t end there. While the following steps sound easy on paper, fulfilling an online order is a fragile process where one mistake can easily bring all your operations to a halt.
Read on as we break them down…
Stock control and management
Wasting a customer’s time is the worst thing a business can do. Have you ever bought a product online only to receive a message a few hours later telling you that it is out of stock? If you have, chances are that you have never bought anything from that retailer again.
And that is exactly why inventory management should be the first step in every eCommerce order processing plan. Invest in good stock control software to ensure that your stock figures are regularly updated and that you never run out of your best performers.
Receiving and accepting orders
There are two ways of doing this. You can accept an order manually or implement an integrated system in your website to automate and streamline this process. Suffice to say, the latter is preferable. With a seamlessly integrated eCommerce solution, you will save you and your customer some precious time whilst ensuring the safety of the payment process. To put it simply – add a cart or basket function to your website.
Automating this step will help your business cope with sudden increases in volume, skyrocketing your sales orders whilst providing good customer service.
Picking, packing and shipping
Picking involves having a trawl through your warehouse to find a product that a customer has ordered. An often-overlooked part of eCommerce, picking needs to be as fast and accurate as possible. In the days of online reviews, you might not recover from sending a customer the wrong item. You can reduce human error by keeping your warehouse tidy and sorted, as well as by barcoding every product. To do this, you can hire dedicated logistics staff or invest in a warehouse management system.
With packing, preparation is key. Make sure every order is properly packed, using bubble wrap if necessary. Matching every parcel’s size and weight to the standards set by your preferred courier company is just as important – and so is labelling.
Shipping is tricky because you don’t have as much control as you do with previous steps. However, you can take precautionary measures. These can go from carefully checking your agreement with the courier company to reading reviews of the services they provide. Integrating your software with your preferred courier services can also remove manual processes and reduce human error and will ensure your paperwork is always spot on for what the courier needs to successfully fulfil your order.
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