Omnichannel Order Management: How To Create The Perfect System
Omnichannel order management is a system developed to respond to the globally changing needs of consumers. In a world wherein modern consumers have adopted a buy-now, buy-fast mentality, it is important for businesses to cope with a seamless and methodical way to handle and deliver orders.
Introduction to Omnichannel Order Management
The retail industry has seen a dramatic shift in the past decade or so. Even before the pandemic, there was already a shift going on as newer methods were being deployed to deliver omnichannel capabilities that would eliminate the divide between traditional brick-and-mortar to that of online store operations.
Simply put, an omnichannel order management is a system of processes and tools that are implemented to increase efficiency and effectiveness in the handling, processing, or delivery of orders made by your customers. It also simplifies the process of pick-up and collecting goods, as well as returning orders (when needed). Customers want better control when ordering both online and from brick-and-mortar stores, but expectations increase with online purchases. They expect convenience and flexibility; and more importantly, they expect the store to go the extra mile to ensure their orders are handled seamlessly.
The consumers are driving this fundamental shift because they expect a seamless shopping experience. And that means they expect to “shop anywhere, anytime.” Retail businesses cannot ignore this growing demand and consumer expectations if they want to stay competitive.
Relying on manual and traditional processes no longer works in today’s retail landscape. If you insist on that, it could put a brake on your business’s revenue growth. An omnichannel retail transformation is the likely solution here, especially if you project a growth in the number of orders and want to maintain productivity and customer satisfaction.
Benefits of Omnichannel Order Management
Efficiently and cost-effectively delivering goods to your customers when your warehouses are at different locations are not the easiest of tasks. Yet, customers expect nothing short of this in this so-called “Age of the Customer.” The success of a business in this modern time relies heavily on keeping customers happy and an omnichannel order management is vital to that.
But is it worth the effort and disruption to your current system of handling orders? These are the key benefits that you can enjoy when you choose to adopt omnichannel capabilities:
- Deliver flexibility to customers as they have the option to collect or return goods online or in a physical store. The fact that you give customers an option creates for a more fulfilling shopping experience.
- Increased transparency in the availability of stocks. This will reduce customer disappointment as they know beforehand if their desired products are available or not.
- Increased customer satisfaction because packages are delivered on-time. The omnichannel order management system allows retailers to utilize fulfillment locations that are the closest proximity to the customer location.
- Significantly decrease labor costs. At the same time, you can tap staff that have been previously designated with order planning and can be utilized to perform more value-added tasks to optimize revenue.
- Save on shipping costs. By properly managing fulfillment locations for every order, you can significantly select the shortest route distance for every order.
- Optimize labor force by utilizing less labor force to fulfill orders. It also reduces the labor burden on your staff.
- Increase your sales and profit margin. The addition of delivery options and more efficient handling of orders can increase your conversions. And, because the new system facilitates lower, sustainable costs, it also means you have a higher margin for profit.
FAQs on Omnichannel Order Management
If you want to know more information about this type of order management system, here are some of the frequently asked questions and their corresponding answers.
Is an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system a good solution for omnichannel orders?
Yes, it is for simple business models. An ERP system can provide basic order management capabilities.
The only downside to using an ERP system is that it implements a consistent business process throughout the orders. This makes it difficult to adapt and might limit your ability to customize every order to suit the needs of every customer.
Therefore, a more efficient order management system is still necessary, especially when dealing with omnichannel orders.
What are the key features of omnichannel order management?
There are three major features involved with an omnichannel order management system. The first one is the ability to sell everywhere. This helps to eliminate overselling by syncing inventory across various channels. This is done in real-time to ensure that order availability is transparent.
The next major feature is the ability to ship everywhere. You have the increased ability to pick and pack more orders in less time. This is a great system to implement if you want to establish a delivery system with lower, more sustainable costs.
Finally, it gives your customers the power to return anywhere. You can facilitate returns to the most convenient location to your customers, as well as process full or partial refunds with ease.
What are common strategic issues with omnichannel order management implementation?
There are a few key issues to be aware of when enhancing the omnichannel capabilities of your store. The first issue is with integration, both in terms of technology and business process.
The next common issue involves the reluctance of many retail businesses to invest in these solutions. Many businesses will stubbornly implement their traditional methods without realizing the limitations in terms of revenue growth potential.
Business leaders must be aware of these strategic issues to ensure that the most effective solutions are deployed.
Final Word on Omnichannel Order Management
If you’re struggling with the current handling of your customer orders, it might be time to consider an omnichannel order management system. The ominous lesson here is that you must be quick to adapt to the demands of your customers. The expectations for this are higher in growing business segments because customers expect that businesses will value their transactions.
Your inability to adapt in a timely manner can hurt your growth trajectory. Make sure you stay ahead of the growth curve by being flexible enough and commit to being an early adopter.