Vendors, e-tailers and logistics providers are increasingly facing challenges due to technological developments and customer demand. But technology is also offering companies a platform to outpace their competitors on service, quality and price. One major challenge in the e-commerce chain is how to deal with logistics needs. Another challenging aspect for companies is how to get any product as fast and predictive as possible to a customer, who is also happy with the delivery that he or she could follow along the entire order process.

Reliable downstream deliveries
Pixmania, Coolblue and Zalando and are just a few companies that succeed in satisfying their customers. They are known for their optimized supply chain. They focus not only on increasing the shopper experience, but also on managing the upstream processes in order to make their downstream deliveries predictive and reliable. They keep on improving the visibility of their supply chains. And they are not alone doing this. The researchers of Aberdeen Group found in a Supply Chain Visibility report (May 2013) that 63% of worldwide operating companies are focusing on improving their supply chain visibility. It is seen as a key aspect to success.

IT tools are becoming increasingly important to today’s smooth supply chains. But as being pro-active towards customers is the new standard, this means internal (order) processes need to be highly automated, for both speed and error reduction reasons. In addition, external processes (from planning to the delivery and signing for receipt) need to be as accurate and efficient as possible.

Reduce workload
The new e-commerce reality forces many companies to decide whether they should keep focusing on what they do best or start investing in modern transaction and logistics systems as well. Many choose to outsource logistics processes and IT tools according to these processes. To mention a few: offering customers to track and trace their ordered products will reduce workload of dispatchers significantly. Hiring a logistics provider that uses modern TMS and route optimization tools will offer you more precise delivery windows and thus happier customers.

Expand your business
And finally, the world is moving towards an Internet of Things (IoT). This means that in the (near) future almost all products and IT tools will be able to send and or receive signals and thus be trackable and traceable. It will help companies in offering extended services and in being able to pick up products and deliver according to what a customer wants. And really, the only thing that matters will be to select the right shopping platform and the best distributor to suit your needs, and to keep your customers happy. So, it’s time to make a smart move that will take your business further.

 

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