Collect tips and tricks to scale your business from SmartTurn’s experts
Collect tips and tricks to scale your business from SmartTurn’s experts
Posted: February 21, 2020 by Ly Phan
The rise of online retail shows no sign of abating, with sales reaching $3.5 trillion globally in 2019. Within four years, that figure is expected to almost double to $6.5 trillion. To put this in perspective, if eCommerce were a country, it would be the fifth-largest economy in the world, ahead of India and the UK. With this level of growth and the size of the opportunity, it is worth identifying the features of the best eCommerce warehouse software for small businesses.
This high level of growth and size of the market represents great opportunity but also an ultra-competitive industry. The onus is on small-businesses to hit the ground running and investing in the best possible warehouse management software can give you the edge.
Warehouses and distribution centers have a pivotal role to play in successful online retail businesses. Due to the Amazon Prime effect, customers now expect accurate and speedy next-day delivery from stores, emphasizing the need for a lean and robust logistical operation. Getting inventory management right is an essential part of the process.
In this post, we look at how warehouse management software (WMS) can help your small and growing business, as well as the features you need to look out for.
The key aspect is the use of technology, which deployed in the right way, can process information far quicker than humans. Using cloud-based software, eCommerce businesses will be able to track, analyze, and improve performance levels. The idea is to reduce, or even eliminate, manual-based inventory processes and switching to an automated, click to point system.
In reducing human input, companies can save time by automating inventory processes such as putaway, stock control, and shipping. By centralizing the information into one, easy to use dashboard, managers will be able to quickly identify and rectify any issues, such as inventory shrinkage or lost products.
Using a reputable provider like SmartTurn, companies can turn this capability into a profit-making asset for the business. Frozen Gourmet, an eCommerce distributor based in California, was able to enjoy double-digit growth within weeks of incorporating SmartTurn’s affordable solution. All online retailers should focus on a core set of crucial features in finding the right WMS package.
The role of an eCommerce inventory management system is to streamline the processes that drive the business. The features of such software need to combine and help companies achieve a smooth and efficient operation that delivers the products to customers with minimal fuss.
An essential component of an eCommerce inventory system is allowing managers and workers to see the information they need in real-time. For example, pick and pack teams can use remote devices to locate and check items through barcode technology. Additionally, business owners can set up alerts, so when products dip below a certain level, workers can restock.
With information being continually updated in real-time through a centralized system, teams will be able to work more quickly and efficiently. There would be no need to go through the time-consuming process of checking paperwork and updating manually as the system has already done it for you.
The value of real-time visibility can be found in the efficiency of spotting any issues and the opportunity to resolve them before they grow. Accuracy and errors are also reduced, saving the business the associated costs and increasing profit margins.
The ability to accurately track items can make or break a retail business. With product returns for eCommerce businesses remaining high at around 40%, companies must track inventory and organize processes accordingly.
The role of WMS is to enable teams to track those items and separate them into appropriate areas easily. For instance, with returning products, companies need to assess the condition and either repackage those items or sustainably dispose of them. By using SmartTurn’s easily navigable solution, managers will be able to track the products throughout the process.
Accurately tracking products throughout the supply chain reduce the risk of inventory being lost or misplaced.
As a company, it’s highly likely you will be using different systems to cover the various processes, such as accounting and HR. A reputable provider would ensure its WMS can integrate with multiple systems and play a full part in the smooth running of the business.
SmartTurn, for example, can integrate with a multitude of different systems, including accounting and barcode scanners. Critically, for online retailers, we also work with leading eCommerce platforms such as Magento and Shopify.
The ease of integration is another appealing aspect to SmartTurn’s solution. For instance, its inventory software is pre-built with integrations to the following applications:
As a result, SmartTurn can slot into the broader business processes with minimal disruption and provide value across the company.
An invaluable feature for eCommerce stores is the ability of inventory management software to help forecast demand and trends. The data processed by the software can enable teams to analyze the numbers and predict the flow of inventory.
By having this capability, small eCommerce businesses will be able to optimize their stock levels and reduce the risk of stockouts or overstock. With stockouts alone costing retailers up to $1 trillion globally, inventory software can get you ahead of your competitors and increase profits.
However, it’s just as important to keep an eye on overstock too. As a small business, it’s imperative to reduce unnecessary expenditures and dead stock. Utilizing the full forecasting capabilities of SmartTurn’s WMS will help you achieve this delicate balance.
The final feature to look out for is the scalability of the eCommerce WMS. As your business grows, the scale and nature of the challenges evolve, making it critical to find a solution that can adapt. SmartTurn’s cloud-based software makes it an ideal package for small eCommerce businesses.
Starting at just $500 a month, SmartTurn provides a customizable solution that serves the needs of your business. More complex features can be added over time, together with specialist customer support. In short, it’s a software that grows with your business.
As a small eCommerce business, a warehouse management software can feel like an unnecessary expense. However, understanding every aspect of your inventory is a critical ingredient for success. With SmartTurn’s affordable and adaptable software, you have a solution that can be customized to your needs - whether you are operating from your garage or a large warehouse.
Whatever stage your company is at, getting the inventory right is of paramount importance - it forms the foundation of your business and ensures you meet customer expectations. By using technology, you will be able to increase accuracy, reduce costly errors, and grow your profits.
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