Omni-channel fulfilment: all about the sales strategy, benefits and practical examples
Selling products through different channels can significantly increase sales and provide customers with a fast and satisfying shopping experience. With this so-called omni-channel strategy, however, it can be a challenge to keep track of all orders and logistics.
In this article, you will learn what omni-channel exactly means, what it requires, how fulfilment works and what advantages it has!
- Here's how omni-channel differs from multi-channel
- What constitutes an omni-channel strategy
- What omni-channel fulfilment means
- All the advantages of omni-channel fulfilment
- How ERP systems simplify omni-channel commerce
- Practical examples of omni-channel fulfilment
The difference between omni-channel and multi-channel is that omni-channel combines the individual parts into a smooth whole, whereas multi-channel offers different independent channels.
- Imagine you own a business with different sales channels such as an online shop, a physical retail shop and possibly a catalogue.
This is the multichannel strategy.
You offer your products through all these channels and communicate with your customers. However, the channels often work independently and there is no seamless integration between them.
Your customers can make purchases on different channels, but there is no connection between them.
- Omni-channel is a different story:
In omni-channel you sell through the same channels as in multichannel, but with one big difference: the sales channels are connected!
Omni-channel means that your customers receive a consistent experience, regardless of which channel they use to shop. The channels merge into one overall picture. After all, you want customers to recognise that it's the same company.
For example, a customer can discover a product online and either buy it there, pick it up in the shop or return it locally. It doesn't matter which of these channels they choose because they are all connected and work together seamlessly. As a business owner, you want to ensure that your customers have a seamless shopping experience that is consistent from channel to channel.
- Integration of different sales channels
- Customer-centric approach
- Consistent brand presence across all channels
- Efficient inventory and warehouse management
- Seamless order processing and delivery
- Customer communication and service across all channels
- Continuous improvement and adaptation to new trends and technologies
Omni-channel fulfilment providers like Quivo ensure that your orders are processed efficiently across different sales channels. Whether it's brick-and-mortar retail, your e-commerce website, mobile apps or even social media.
We make sure your customers receive their products quickly and easily, regardless of which channel they use to order. We take care of all orders automatically in the background, while you can focus on other aspects of your business.
The goal is to create a seamless and consistent shopping experience. As a business, you can pursue the optimal strategy by using omni-channel to offer your products through different channels and accompany your customers throughout their entire shopping journey.
The benefits of omni-channel fulfilment for businesses at a glance
- Seamless integration of sales channels into logistics software
- Real-time synchronisation of inventory, orders and delivery information
- Centralised order management for efficient processing and coordination
- Automated inventory tracking and updating across all channels
- Flexible delivery network with various shipping options (e.g. business delivery, same-day fulfilment, pick-up, etc.)
- Improved customer satisfaction with accurate delivery times and tracking options
- Efficient return and exchange processes for a seamless experience
- Data analysis and reporting to optimise inventory, storage capacity and delivery processes
- Cost savings through optimised fulfilment operations and economies of scale
- Competitive advantage through a seamless and consistent omni-channel experience for customers
But how do you make it happen?
Here are detailed approaches we take to get the most out of omni-channel fulfilment for you:
- Inventory Management:
Effective inventory management is crucial to ensure your products are available across all channels. By using advanced logistics software like our Connector, you can monitor your inventory in real time and ensure smooth logistics.
- Data analysis and reporting:
We provide you with comprehensive data analysis and reporting tools to gain insight into the success of your omni-channel strategy. You'll get detailed reports on sales figures, stock levels and other relevant metrics to make data-driven decisions and continuously optimise your strategy.
- Order visibility:
With our integrated order management, you can efficiently process and coordinate orders from multiple channels. This ensures fast and accurate order processing, whether your customers are buying online, in-store or through other channels.
- Flexible delivery network:
A flexible delivery network is critical to ensure fast and reliable delivery across multiple channels. Fulfillment providers like us offer different shipping methods to meet your customers' needs.
- Customer communication:
Effective communication with your customers is crucial to ensure a seamless omni-channel experience. We provide tracking information for you and your customers so they can stay informed about order status and delivery information.
- Returns management:
Handling returns can be a challenge, but as an omni-channel fulfilment provider, we can help. We offer efficient returns processes to provide your customers with a convenient solution.
- Cost optimisation:
By consolidating and optimising your fulfilment operations across multiple channels, we can help you reduce costs. By leveraging our existing infrastructure and expertise, you can benefit from efficiency gains and scalability.
- Competitive advantage:
By providing you with a powerful omni-channel fulfilment solution, it helps you stand out from the competition. You can offer unique and superior shopping experiences, strengthen customer loyalty and build a strong market position.
ERP systems play a crucial role for entrepreneurs in the Omni-Channel commerce. These systems enable seamless management of various sales channels and coordination of the entire business operation. They serve as a central platform where entrepreneurs can manage orders, inventory, deliveries, customer information, and much more.
Some of the most common ERP systems used in Omni-Channel commerce include:
As a fulfillment provider, we integrate all these popular ERP systems into our own logistics software - the Connector.
This integration allows for smooth communication and processing of orders, inventory management, and deliveries across multiple channels. By integrating ERP systems into our logistics software, we ensure an efficient and effective control of the entire Omni-Channel commerce process for our customers.
Here are some examples of how omni-channel fulfilment can work for your business and how the logistics work:
- Mobile apps and physical shops:
In the age of smartphones, many companies offer their customers* mobile apps through which they can purchase products. With omni-channel fulfilment, customers can place their orders through the app and then either choose home delivery or pick up the products at a nearby shop.
This combines the convenience of mobile shopping with the ability to have products in their hands immediately.
- Omni-channel platforms:
A good example of omni-channel fulfilment is online omni-channel retail!
Your customers are everywhere and you can reach them through every possible digital channel. At the same time, you store your products centrally with a fulfilment provider who takes care of all your logistics - no matter where the orders happen. Through your social media account, through your different websites or online shops, or through a third online marketplace.
You can be active on different channels at the same time - your logistics are visible in one place, the logistics software. There you can see all orders from all connected channels. This makes it easy for you to keep track of your sales and shipping activities!
Imagine you're a retailer with a brick-and-mortar shop and an online presence. Omni-channel fulfilment allows you to offer your customers the option to buy products online and then collect them from your shop.
Once the order is received, you see it in the Connector and can pick the item from your shop stock. Your customer can come into the shop and pick up the order. This concept allows customers to save time and combine the convenience of online shopping with instant access to the product.
- Return options via different channels:
Omni-channel fulfilment can also play a big role in returns and exchanges. Let's say a customer has purchased a product online but is not satisfied with their purchase. Instead of returning the product by post, you can give them the option to return or exchange it in one of your shops. This offers the customer more flexibility and a faster returns process.
Finally, you can send these returns to us individually or collectively, and we will take care of further processing or storage as agreed.
- Warehouse optimisation and inventory balancing:
Omni-channel fulfilment also allows you to optimise your stock levels and enable stock balancing between different channels. If a product is running low in a shop but still available in the online shop, you can route an order from online stock to the shop, ensuring the customer can get the product they want quickly.
- Omni-Channel Integration:
Integrating omni-channel businesses with a fulfilment provider's logistics software facilitates the omni-channel experience for businesses by providing a centralised and efficient platform. Seamless integration and synchronisation of inventory, orders and delivery information across multiple channels enables smooth order fulfilment.
Discover our Connector- which does just that and offers many more features to make your omni-channel fulfilment easy!
Do you have more questions about omni-channel fulfilment or would you like to talk about your logistics?
Research and texts partly done in OpenAI - Chat GPT
Multichannel logistics: How to always keep an eye on everything
E-commerce Statistics, Trends, and Insights for 2023
Main Picture created with midjourney Picture Generator
Logsta © 2023