In today’s internet-obsessed world, the role of the warehouse has shifted from its origins as a staging ground for the retail store into an extensible, agility-focused shipping center. Because of the Amazon Effect, customers demand fast, immediate shipping with transparent, moment-to-moment tracking along the way. Customer expectations are raising, but with cloud you can keep up. You can improve your operations, increase efficiency, and improve customer satisfaction.
Why the Amazon Effect Fuels Faster Shipping and New Opportunities
Buying something online used to mean days, if not weeks of waiting for delivery through a ground shipping service. However, now customers won’t buy online unless the product will be in their hands within three days, if not sooner. The Amazon Effect is impacting all major retailers as customers demand faster and faster shipping times.
For retailers who want to continue their online storefront, now more than ever the warehouse depends on fast packaging, shipping, and delivery solutions to satisfy customers and their need for speed. While this adds more responsibility to the warehouse, this shift to faster shipping also has some advantages. For example, Drop Shipping is extremely viable for companies that have fast, agile warehouses for fulfillment. Since customers are willing to wait two or three days for a product sold online, Drop Shipping is a naturally cost-effective way to manage inventory. As long as the time from order to delivery stays within that three-day sweet spot, retailers and distributors can take advantage of Drop Shipping integration to streamline inventory management, depend less on retail storage space, and ensure more efficient transportation costs for sold goods. Customers will also be happier, since they can see a product in the store, but get it delivered right to their door in colors or designs not available in the store.
How the Cloud Integrates with Inventory Management
Getting your warehouse up to speed to compete with Amazon is possible, but it depends on the right tools, such as deep cloud integration, in order to succeed. With three-day delivery periods, inventory management cannot live without seamless integration between both ends of the shipping pipeline. On one end, you have the customers, who immediately place an order on your website or through a retail store. On the other end, you have your warehouse and the third party shipping provider who will fulfill the order. The cloud allows you to integrate these two ends of the pipeline into a single process, free of hiccups, slow-downs, or other woes.
Additionally, on the customer’s end, it’s important to have inventory management software that works seamlessly with your accounting and sales systems. There’s nothing worse than shipping out goods that for some reason were not paid for first, or that get sent to the wrong address due to an error in communication. QStock Inventory integrates with QuickBooks, ensuring that all the information on the purchase order is accurate and corresponds with what is received by the warehouse for fulfillment. This ensures laser-accurate inventory as well, since every product shipped can be associated with its order number, the customer who ordered it, and all other relevant information. All of this is handled in real time without any manual entry or conversion.
On the fulfillment end, QStock Inventory streamlines capabilities with cloud connectivity. Orders processed through the warehouse are connected automatically with whichever shipping provider is selected by the customer. That information is then transferred to UPS, FedEx, or another provider for accurate shipping labels, weight information, and other relevant data for efficient Drop Shipping management.
The Importance of Managing Inventory Quickly and Effectively
When it comes to integrating with the cloud, inventory software shouldn’t be treated as some ancient system that just keeps barcodes in check. The only way a company can keep track of its inventory while ensuring fast shipping is to use an inventory solution that integrates seamlessly with cloud solutions for accounting, e-commerce, and shipping fulfillment. QStock Inventory software enables warehouses, retailers, and other companies to track their products, integrate with powerful software, and keep Landed Costs as low as possible. Contact us to learn more about how QStock Inventory can suit your company’s warehouse software needs.