What Is Sales Order Entry?
If you work for an online retail business, you’ll have probably heard of sales order entry at some point. Let’s break this concept down to its essential components….
As its name suggests, a sales order is a confirmation that a business can supply the items ordered in a purchase by a customer. In other words, it is a promise made by a business that it will fulfil a customer’s order. More often than not, this takes the form of a commercial document prepared by a seller and issued to a buyer. This document confirms that the sale has been processed and details its specifics – from the number of goods to the delivery date.
The term ‘sales order entry’ refers to the actions needed to record a customer’s order into the seller’s handling system. A sales order entry takes place when a sales order is input into a company’s sales order management solution. In other words, it is the process by which an order is submitted to a database. Once submitted, this allows users to view details and make changes if necessary.
From the business’ point of view, this sales order information is used to organise and schedule all the processes needed to fulfil the order. These processes include everything from ordering the item from a supplier to storing, picking, packing and shipping.
As you might have guessed by now, there are a lot of different tasks at work here. If only there was a way to take care of all of them at the same time! Well, what if we told you that such a thing exists?
The joys of automated sales order management
With all the different tasks that go into processing a sales order, keeping on top of everything can be extremely difficult. Fortunately, that’s what order management system (OMS) software is for. Nowadays, sales order entry is supported by highly complex computer applications that ensure the smooth running of every step in the process.
Implementing an automated order management system does a lot more than allowing your customers to place orders directly. From calculating shipping fees to delivering fulfilment information to the warehouse team, a good OMS solution will streamline all your sales order processes. For example, it will instantly collect and sort your order forms – saving you loads of time on data entry.
Among other things, a high-level OMS software can handle your sales order entries for you. With this in mind, we have identified a few ways in which automated OMSs can streamline all your sales order entry processes…
Email automated order acknowledgements
Sales orders are always followed by what we call a sales order acknowledgement – or sales confirmation. Essentially, this is a document that confirms that the seller has received the order placed by the customer. This is particularly useful for customers, as it lets them review their order before it’s packed and sent for delivery. If there is any problem with the order, the customer has the chance to spot it immediately and contact your customer services to amend it.
Sales order acknowledgments have become standard practice online. If your customer buys a product off you and they don’t receive an immediate order acknowledgement, they’ll probably think there’s something wrong. And that’s the last thing you want. The easiest way to avoid this? Implement an OMS that sends order acknowledgements automatically.
Send instant orders to your distribution team
Not only do automated OMS software systems inform your customers that their order has been received – they also inform your entire distribution team. This speeds up and simplifies the entire distribution process – from picking and packing to shipping. We cannot overstate the importance that this has for online businesses. In a sales environment where customers have come to expect immediate satisfaction, time is of the essence. Minimising the time between the order being made and the order being fulfilled will increase your customer satisfaction ratings.
Avoid human error
Historically, sales order entries have always involved a large amount of work. Every time they received an order, sales reps would have to manually convert a purchase order into a sales order. As you can imagine, human errors happened regularly. Exhausted after hours of typing, it was only natural for sales reps to mistype a name or an address, for example. It goes without saying that this could have dire consequences for a business.
This problem completely vanishes with an automated sales order entry solution. Because it is the customer who is responsible for entering their details, it’s less likely for them to get them wrong. This means fewer returns, fewer amendments and more customer satisfaction – all in all, more revenue.
Reduce menial activities
You don’t want your sales reps to spend hours inputting data every week. That’s not what you pay them for. You pay them to build strong commercial relationships that bring profit to both seller and buyer. And that’s exactly what they’ll do if you implement an automated sales order entry solution that will take care of all the menial work.
Improve productivity with an integrated point of sale
Just like manual data entry, retyping orders into accounting systems is on its way out. Not only will a good OMS solution allow you to create sales orders, repeat orders, back orders and price quotes, it can also be linked to all your accounting processes. That allows you to keep track of your sales revenue at all times. Implementing an integrated point of sale will simplify all your sales needs – in turn, increasing revenue and improving performance.
If you’re looking to implement an OMS solution, we strongly recommend looking for one that allows for Amazon, eBay and eCommerce integration. This will keep you in the loop with regards to your customer’s account information – as well as notifying you of low inventory levels so you’re never understocked. Having such valuable information at hand will enable you to make smarter decisions about your business.
Sales order entry made easy
Sales order entry needn’t be a chore. At OGL Software, we have created a sales order management software solution that will do it for you. Even better, it will also act as an integrated point of sale – automating purchasing decisions and establishing a seamless data flow across all your different channels.