High costs, failed deliveries, dissatisfied customers… These are just some of the many problems you may encounter if the order management of your online store not optimized as it should.
And it is that, errors and bad practices in the preparation of orders are more common than one expects. In fact, in some cases they can become a real threat to a company’s profits, especially if they are held continuously for too long.
So that this cannot happen to you or your business, we have collected some of the most repeated mistakes in the eCommerce industry and that, unfortunately, tend to be overlooked.
Logistics: The 4 mistakes that are repeated in the eCommerce industry
1. Shipping label contains flaws
The shipping label is the adhesive document that shows all the data related to the shipment: the type of cargo, the delivery address or the tracking number. All this information is necessary for the carrier to know where to deliver the merchandise and how to handle it. This makes them delicate items, as any error in the recipient’s address or name will mean that the delivery cannot be made and the shipment will be returned to origin.
For example, if a cash-on-delivery shipment is not reflected on the label with the amount to be collected, the delivery may very well end up failing. As you can imagine, all this is a sum of costs that must be borne by the store, and little by little they reduce the benefits.
But the real problem comes when the labels are generated manually and not with an automatic program, since it is quite common to make errors on a human level, which, even if they are minimal, can cause shipments to incur constant incidents.
This can be avoided with a computer solution that connects online store orders with picking lists and the generation of labels. This eliminates any possible human error and reduces the time and resources required to create the labels.
2. Volumetric weight is not taken into account
The volumetric weight It is the main measure used by the transport when establishing the rate of a shipment. This metric is used to determine how much space the package actually occupies inside the truck, regardless of its actual weight.
Reducing the density of each package will allow the carrier to move more units per trip, thus improving the profitability of their work and reducing the rate that you must pay for each shipment.
In this sense, it is highly advisable to adjust the size of the packaging to the actual dimensions of the product. This is one of the main practices when it comes to reducing costs in an online store. In addition to not paying to ship air, you’ll also save on materials, since you won’t be buying unnecessarily large packaging.
However, not all eCommerce are aware of them, and many use oversized packaging, something tremendously detrimental to logistics costs.
3. Warehouse processes do not have enabled areas
Having a specific area for each activity carried out within the warehouse is a great help if you want to avoid bottlenecks or excessively inefficient logistics processes.
Both the preparation of orders and the management of the supply chain require an enormous amount of activity that, in general, converge within the warehouse. We find the supply of goods, the packaging of products, inventory management, picking, returns, quality controls, labelling, reconditioning or simple maintenance of the facilities.
All these processes can interfere with each other inside the warehouse if there is no planning of routes and work times. Even more so when eCommerce operates with large order flows or manages a network of several warehouses. As long as you have a large enough warehouse, it is very convenient that you enable and designate specific areas for certain processes.
For example, if your business has two extremely different types of products and one requires special preparation, dedicating a room solely for that product will help you avoid delays in preparing the rest of the items.
This philosophy can be transferred to other processes, such as packaging or product reconditioning. Also important is the synchronization of goods output with inputs.
4. Absence of inventory strategy
Chaotic and poorly structured inventories are a source of problems in the preparation of shipments.
A very common mistake related to poor inventory management is locating the same or similar products in different areas of the warehouse. This not only makes it difficult to count the units (in the absence of a computerized system), it also means that the operator has to travel excessively during the picking process, thus increasing the time it takes to prepare each order.
Product mix-ups are also very common. This usually happens when the item’s reference number does not match its actual location or because there is no merchandise identification system.
Other derived problems are:
Errors in the number of units of each shipment. Mix products in different orders. Confuse shipments and returns. Choosing wrong sizes for the same product.
In order not to spend too much time collecting products, it is essential to invest in a warehouse design that allows picking with agility. To do this, tools such as Outvio can help you, an after-sales management software capable of optimizing the management of online store orders automatically and easily. Scanning and printing of labels, international returns, shipment tracking with company branding, automation of personalized messages or intelligent incident resolution… These are some of its features to save time, increase sales and greatly improve the user experience .
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