Retail Technology Tip #7 From Storis: Delivery Management
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For many furniture retailers the primary method of order fulfillment is through delivery. For many customers a primary factor of evaluating their satisfaction with your business is how that delivery was executed. If you are inaccurate with the date and time of your customer’s delivery, you could risk losing a repeat customer.
Without technological resources, many retailers can only provide a ballpark estimate of when merchandise is available for delivery. This requires follow up communication with the customer to define a scheduled delivery date, taking resources away from your sales floor. In addition, because the original date may not have been accurate, expectations can be let down.
In best practice, a retailer can precisely tell a customer when their merchandise will be delivered with the use of software. When a retailer uses an integrated solution, their data around sales fulfillment, purchasing, inventory and logistics can be used together to schedule accurate delivery. Here are some factors that can help your business achieve success.
- Inventory Availability It’s obvious that you need to have the inventory available to fulfill orders. Software can help you keep track of inventory quantities, where the items are located within your company, and if the inventory is already reserved to other orders or not. From there you can determine whether the piece is in stock or if you need to purchase a new item for the specific order.
- Vendor Settings If you do need to purchase from the vendor, you can use vendor settings to determine average lead times. You can set up production and in-transit days. The system will even allow you to calculate padding days for some unreliable vendors. After all, it is better to tell the customer something realistic that you can achieve, than to over promise. Vendor information can help you determine when the inventory will be available.
- Delivery Management Besides the inventory, you also need resources such as labor, trucks, and time to be able to complete your deliveries. Through delivery management, you can maintain your routes and properly allocate these resources. In addition, you can alert your warehousing staff to what items needed to be prepped for the truck each day through pick-lists and manifests.
- Logistical Scheduling You can bring your delivery program full circle right at the Point of Sale. With Logistical Scheduling, your sales person can use a culmination of all this data to view open dates for delivery and schedule that date while completing the order. Logistical Scheduling takes into account your route capacities, so you don’t over-extend your resources on any given day. If too many orders are assigned to a route, that date will not be available for your sales team to choose in the first place.
Within a well-designed software system, there are many features that a retailer can utilize in order to meet the requirements of their delivery programs. Providing these details to the customer before the sale is even entered establishes a high level of trust and confidence with the retailer. When that merchandise is actually delivered on the date promised, the level of customer satisfaction is exceedingly high.
More about STORIS:
Founded in 1989, STORIS continues to be the leading provider of Retail Software Solutions and Services to Big Ticket retailers of ALL sizes. Over 350 Clients utilize STORIS’ single ERP solution including point of sale, mobile processing, supply chain management, customer care, accounting, ecommerce solutions, business intelligence and more.
For more information contact 1.888.4.STORIS or leave a message at https://www.storis.com/contact/
Technology Tips From Storis
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