5 Ways to improve your e-commerce order management
If you run an e-commerce business, you know how important it is to get orders right. At the end of the day, your customers are only going to come back if they can trust that orders will be filled accurately and on time. Efficient order management is crucial for the success of any online store —whether you sell directly or through a third-party marketplace. An e-commerce order management system helps ensure that customers have a seamless shopping experience and that orders are fulfilled accurately and promptly. In this blog, we’ll take a look at five ways you can improve your e-commerce order management processes. From investing in a reliable e-commerce platform to using data to inform your decisions, these tips will help you streamline your processes and drive the success of your online business.
The steps to efficient order management
Implement a dedicated order management system (OMS)
An integrated order management system leverages e-commerce backend automation technology to automate workflows based on pre-defined rules that trigger one task after a previous one is completed and the system is notified of the same. Such a system can be helpful in many ways. First, it creates a single source of truth for all customer data that is accessible to all of your internal stakeholders. This can include your sales team and marketing department and customer service team—everyone who touches customers’ experiences with your brand.
Second, an order management system helps you capture more valuable information about your customers’ purchases and behaviours during checkout. With this insight, you can identify pain points in their ordering process and make changes accordingly; for example, by making product recommendations based on past purchases or cross-selling related products, they may find useful or interesting but haven’t yet considered buying themselves.
Third, an order management system gives you visibility into the entire ordering process, including any errors that occur along the way, so that you can fix them before processing ends (which will help prevent negative reviews). It also provides insights into how long each step takes so that you can optimise operations moving forward if necessary.
Lastly, time: an order management system is great because it centralises all customer data available across different departments into one platform so no one needs to repeat work unnecessarily.
Streamline warehouse operations
Here, you can use a warehouse inventory management system integrated with your OMS to improve the productivity and efficiency of workflows. This type of solution helps you track inventory and optimise shipping, which will save you time and money. You should make sure your warehouse has enough space for the products you sell, as this will allow for greater efficiency in storing and retrieving items.
Besides tracking inventory, warehouse inventory management systems also enable companies to automate operations such as receiving orders into the warehouse, processing them through the system, and shipping them out again. Another benefit is that they help identify any bottlenecks in operations so that companies can take steps like hiring more workers or automating certain processes to alleviate these bottlenecks.
Unify source and destination
Integrating data from all your systems including the OMS, the inventory management system, logistics management system, and the channel system is the most important step in order management to correctly attribute each order to the right source and ensuring its fulfilment to the right destination. This enables you to bring together the information required to manage orders from start to finish, regardless of whether they’re placed on a website or through an offline channel. Just on the surface itself, the benefits of unified data include increased accuracy and reduced fulfilment costs, not to mention the reduced time spent on each stage of the order lifecycle and lesser human intervention.
Some of the largest e-commerce marketplaces in the world, such as Amazon, eBay, Shopee, Lazada, and others, have achieved success with this approach by leveraging tools for managing operations across different channels. These include AI algorithms analysing customer data across platforms to learn which customers prefer which payment methods and shipping options based on purchase history and other factors, and then automatically matching these preferences with the available inventory at each point in the supply chain process.
Give customers more control
You can help your customers get better control over their orders by giving them more control and visibility over tracking order status. Here are a few ways you can do this:
- Give customers the ability to change or cancel an order. The easier you make it for customers to edit their orders and make changes when they need to, the happier they’ll be with their experience.
- Allow them to add or remove items from an order. If a customer realises that they need something else after placing the original order, they shouldn’t have any trouble adding it in later—especially if they can pay for it at checkout rather than having two separate transactions (the original one and then another one for the new product).
- Let customers track their orders online instead of just providing them with confirmation numbers via email or phone calls every step of the way.
Automate as much as possible
E-commerce backend automation is key to improving order management. Here are some ways you can use automation to make your job easier:
- Use automation to send order confirmation emails: When a customer places an order on your website, you can use automation to send them a confirmation email with the details of their order. This helps to reduce the number of customer service inquiries you receive and keeps your customers informed about the status of their orders.
- Automate shipping notifications: You can use automation to send shipping notifications to customers when their order has shipped. This helps to keep them informed and reduces the number of inquiries you receive about order tracking.
- Automate tracking updates: You can also use automation to send tracking updates to customers as their order makes their way to them. This helps to keep them informed and provides an additional level of transparency.
- Automate inventory updates: If you use an e-commerce platform with inventory management capabilities, you can automate the process of updating your inventory levels as orders are placed and fulfilled. This helps to reduce the risk of overselling and ensures that you always have an accurate view of your available stock.
- Automate returns and exchanges: Finally, you can use automation to streamline the process of handling returns and exchanges. For example, you can use automation to send return shipping labels to customers and to update your inventory levels when a return is received.
Effective e-commerce order management is key to the success of any online store. By following the tips outlined in this blog post, you can improve your order management processes and provide a better shopping experience for your customers. Investing in a good e-commerce platform, automating certain tasks, implementing a clear returns and exchanges policy, streamlining your fulfilment process, and using data to inform your decisions are all effective ways to improve your order management. By taking the time to optimise these processes, you’ll be able to increase the efficiency of your business and build customer loyalty.
Looking to streamline your multi-channel e-commerce order management processes and access data more seamlessly? If so, you’re in the right place! Ordazzle is an e-commerce management platform that helps B2C and D2C businesses maximise order management and fulfilment efficiencies, and revenues. Speak to our experts today for a consultation!