4 Signs That You Need a Better Order Management System
Order Management System
The pandemic disrupted businesses everywhere. It also set off a global supply chain crisis, igniting unprecedented shockwaves. The shockwaves are still being felt two years after the crisis first broke. Even many eCommerce companies have been reeling under the impact of labor shortages, manufacturing breakdowns, and inventory, fulfillment, and shipping challenges.
Obviously, they need to find ways to streamline their supply chains, eliminate vulnerabilities, and meet their customers’ evolving demands. Here’s where technological solutions like Order Management Systems (OMS) come in.
If you own, operate, or manage an eCommerce business, you need an OMS. The following sections elaborate on the whys and hows of establishing such a system.
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Capturing, Tracking, and Fulfilling Orders
A small, single-channel eCommerce company may be able to manage with a simple spreadsheet-based order tracking system. But as your company scales and adopts a multi-channel sales model, you will find it harder to keep up with all your orders. Missing, mismanaged, and misplaced orders are all surefire paths to revenue losses, unhappy customers, and a battered reputation. An OMS can protect you from such issues.
The right OMS solution will record and track all received orders through every operating channel, including:
- Your own webstore
- eCommerce marketplaces like Amazon or Shopify
- Social media
- Phone or mobile app
The best OMS systems can help you automate many aspects of your order and fulfillment processes. You can view each order, check its status, and even make changes wherever required. You can also automatically:
- Send order information to third-party logistics (3PL) partners for fulfillment
- Route orders to the right warehouse
- Track orders by channel, location, and currency
- Accept and process payments from any destination or in any currency
- Print shipping labels
- Create invoices and purchase orders
An OMS is also useful if you need to ask customers for more information or want to send them an update on order fulfillment status. Since all order details are available in one centralized location, you can easily get or share the information you need for a seamless order management process.
Tracking and Optimizing Inventory Levels
Your company’s inventory is highly dynamic, constantly changing due to new receipts, orders, sales, returns, and even shrinkage due to theft, vendor fraud, accounting errors, or shoplifting. To ensure that you have enough inventory to fulfill orders – and meet customer expectations – you need to properly manage your inventory.
Good inventory management is a critical requirement for any eCommerce brand, but even more so for companies that operate in multiple channels and countries. Why? Because businesses lose $1.75 trillion annually due to inventory mismanagement! Moreover, multi-channel inventory management is the third-largest challenge for supply chain leaders.
To avoid these problems, you need an OMS.
An OMS can help you manage, track, and optimize your inventory across multiple channels. It will update inventory levels in real-time, so at any time, you will know if you need to replenish it and across which channel. You can also review sales by region or channel and identify best-selling products to quickly restock inventory and thus maximize sales and profits.
You can also integrate the OMS with your financial software to merge inventory and sales data. This will help you glean key insights about accounts payable and receivables and identify opportunities to boost sales and increase profits.
Streamlining Reverse Logistics
Sources show that about 30% of products purchased online are returned. Even if your return rate is lower than the industry average, you need to be prepared for returns. That’s why you need to streamline the reverse logistics process.
An OMS solution can make it easy for customers to return their purchases and get a refund, exchange, replacement, or credit note. About 96% of customers are willing to return if the returns process is easy. By simplifying the returns process, you can deliver great customer experiences and improve your customer retention rate.
The right OMS software can help you:
- Instantly create a credit for an original order
- Automatically print return labels so customers can easily send items back
- Write off, or quarantine sent back stock
- Update on-hand inventory with the latest information about returned, replaced, or exchanged products
Reverse logistics can be painful for many eCommerce companies. OMS removes this pain and makes the entire process straightforward – both for you and your customers.
Improving Customer Relationship Management
An OMS can do much more than take care of the nitty-gritty of your eCommerce business and supply chain. It can also help you manage customer information and use this information to improve your relationships with them.
The OMS will store every customer’s information that you can easily access. This includes their demographic details like names, addresses, genders, and locations, as well as information related to their:
- Past orders
- Order frequency
- Lifetime value
With this information, you can identify high-value customers and target them for cross-sells and upsells. You can also identify disengaged customers and design email campaigns with attractive incentives to bring them back. Finally, you can create personalized marketing campaigns to thank loyal customers and request them for referrals or reviews.
Generic marketing just does not work in today’s crowded eCommerce landscape. By leveraging an OMS and its automated reports and dashboards, you can understand customers better and impress them with personalized marketing and promotions. These efforts will eventually reflect in your sales and profits results.
The Bottom Line
The order management process can be complicated. But the right OMS can support your efforts and streamline your activities to simplify the process. An OMS can bring a high level of automation so you can reduce manual labor and grunt work and focus on what really matters – growing your business and making customers happy.
Ignitiv provides world-class Customer Experience (CX) solutions that empower eCommerce companies to increase conversions and boost average order value. To know how we can help your company address its key challenges and get going on a sustainable growth path, get in touch with us today.