Shopify is currently one of the most comprehensive and helpful online systems when you plan to venture into the e-commerce world. It offers integrative approaches that can link with your other marketplaces so there is less hassle for you in managing all the nitty-gritty that comes with order management, fulfillment and delivery. With all the perks and benefits that Shopify has to offer, your Shopify account and online marketplace could even be better when partnered with a logistics engine.
Logistics engine providers are the ultimate integrative solution to all our e-commerce problems. They provided both the software from which you can see all your transactions across all the sales channels that you have within a unified hub. Aside from this software, once you enter a partnership with a logistics engine provider, you do not need to worry about all the orders once you send them to one or multiple of their warehouses. From there, your fulfillment partner will be taking over and will work hard to give your customers the most hassle-free and satisfactory experience by making sure that the product deliveries are done safely, quickly and accurately.
In this article, we will tackle how the Shopify experience could be enhanced by working hand-in-hand with a logistics engine provider such as Locad. Of course, we will also be outlining the top telltale signs that you just might be needing the assistance of a logistics engine provider. We hope to give you a holistic image of what a logistics engine can help you do for the benefit of growing your business to an unprecedented scale.
You struggle to manage all your sales channels at once
Probably because you want your online presence to reach the most people, and make sure that your target audience can access the products that you are most proud of, you signed up for an account for a lot of the major marketplaces. Don’t worry, we’re not going to scold you for doing just that. In fact, it is a smart move. You have Shopify, Woocommerce, Lazada, Shopee and Tiktok. But the major problem is that you don’t have precious time to look at your orders, and check them platform by platform.
But that’s exactly what a logistics engine is for. To help you integrate all these channels all in a unified hub that you can access within one webpage. What once was a multitude of browser tabs that you go to and fro in your web browser is now looking neat and more organized with each of the sales channels easily accessible with a button on your logistics engine sales channel management hub. Take for example, the Locad Control Tower, which is logistics engine provider Locad’s sales management hub. When you decide to sign up for the services of a logistics engine, one of the first things that you have to accomplish is to connect and integrate all of your sales channels into the Control Tower to provide you a seamless command center for all your platforms. If you have started your business the old-fashioned way and have spreadsheets of your inventory prior to doing it fully online, you also have the option to upload these spreadsheets to give you a fuller picture without having to input your data one by one. That task is pretty tedious, by the way. Once you have sent your stocks to the logistics engine provider, which will also handle fulfillment and sending them to a third-party logistics (3PL) partner, you can also monitor the status of your inventory and the orders that come in through the hub once your stocks go live.
Your inventory can’t fit in your small warehouse anymore
A small space near your neighborhood was enough for all your products to be stored in when you were just beginning. But our businesses cannot stay at the same level for so long. Sooner or later, we have to expand. But daring expansion plans are not without their birthing pains and the multitude of problems that come with these can be pretty discouraging and can derail you from your track. Aside from seeing it organized, of course, we want to take care of our products that we want our customers to receive in the best possible condition. We also want to be sure that the quality remains at the optimum level even after long hours of travel. And these can be pretty laborious tasks when done by yourself or just a small team.
This is another aspect which calls for intervention by a logistics engine provider. With the services of a logistics engine, you can send your products to one or more of their partners which are strategically spread out in your home country, and even across the globe. To encourage everyone to avail of this service, logistics engine provider Locad offers the best possible terms when it comes to storing services – you only pay for the inventory you use. You do not have to worry about wasting money about the storage space that you cannot maximize. What’s nicer is that you can deploy and re-deploy your stocks easily through the hub if you deem appropriate. Bonus tip: when you check your insights, you will get data about your best-selling products and where they sell best. From there, you could pour in more stocks of your products in the nearest warehouse in the area to make sure that your loyal customers do not chance upon an “out-of-stock” incident. You don’t want to disappoint them, right?
Your shipping timeframe is too long
Speed and accuracy: the tenets of end-to-end fulfillment and last-mile delivery today. Nobody wants a late shipment. And customers are less likely to order if you if “to be delivered in 15-30 days” shows up on their screen. The truth is, we live in a fast-paced world. And our business and commercial processes have to catch up or else we fall behind the competition.
Let’s face it. It is way more satisfactory for customers when your products are delivered in a fast and safe manner. They tend to be happier with their unboxing experience, send you good reviews in the app, and tell their friends and family that you are a reliable brand and get them to buy from your store as well.
But lots of orders, with only a few people working, can mean disaster. That’s why a logistics engine revolutionizes the way we handle orders. With the logistics engine’s same-day fulfillment (picking and packing, that is), you can be sure to reduce the shipping time. The average reduction of the time it takes for end-to-end fulfillment to be conducted with a logistics engine runs at around 50%, a drastic improvement when put in contrast with self-conducted fulfillment processes. There are other a lot of success stories when brands work with logistics engines. Some have reported reducing their regular 4-5 hour delivery time to just 90 minutes, and some who have recorded 15-30 days on average, have been able to accomplish fulfillment within 24 hours.
You find it hard monitoring your deliveries
The unified sales management hub is your trusted friend, remember that. Within your unified hub, you can just leave your product deliveries to just take place without you doing anything. But if you are a bit into details, or your customer is asking, or maybe you just want to know for whatever reason, you can look at real-time reports that are available to be seen via your Control Tower.
Using a database of all information about your customers and orders, the systems of logistics engine providers can intelligently automate and designate the tracks of your deliveries according to the most efficient routes the systems can come up with. For starters, it could ship a product from the nearest warehouse hub to a specific customer as long as those specific products are in stock in the nearest location.
With the network of warehouses and 3PL providers that logistics engines have, you can be assured that your deliveries can be at the customer’s homes or offices by the time that you have promised them, and that they expect. If anything untoward happens though, you can see it through the real-time tracking systems logistics engines have developed with their 3PL partners.
Aside from these real-time reports, you get access to premium-grade customer service trained by the logistics engine providers to help you sift through the issues you are facing when using the service. Through every step of the way, from picking up the products from you, to reporting for success as the delivery person sees a big smile on your customer, the logistics engine will keep you updated.
There’s just lots of paperwork and you don’t know what to do next
Before, you were given analytics from each of your channels, but that should no longer be the case. Inside your Control Tower, you get real-time data on what happens to your delivery from the order management tab, which shows you information about the product, prices, delivery status, customer information and warehouse locations. There are also other tabs dedicated to the available storage locations, and where you can have your products picked up to be delivered to the nearest warehouse partner. You can even monitor your bulk shipments that you have ordered to be conducted either domestically or internationally. An Inventory Tab also shows you your total stocks that are spread across all the locations where you have placed them, and you can even check them per location.
If you are in a bit of a rush, the Sales Overview tab shows you a quick summary of your sales and all pertinent information to help you decide when troubleshooting whatever issue you might be facing at the moment. The unified sales channel management hub called Control Tower (for Locad, that is) also provides you with insights on which of your products are selling the best, where those sales are concentrated, and other information which can help you strategize where to put your stock.
From time to time, you can also set up consultations with your logistics engine service agent to carefully assess which steps you must take to further expand, or to increase the sales of the products that are lagging behind according to available insights. In fact, in just one peek, the unified hub can also give you an overview of which among your sales channels or platforms are getting the most orders, and raking in more sales for your brand. This way, you can adjust on which channels to invest in terms of marketing and promotions.
Worry no more: the logistics engine is on it!
The logistics engine is designed to be your best friend – it will support you and help you along the way but it will also truthfully assess your strengths and weaknesses – where you excel, and where you should improve. Partnering with a logistics engine provider will do you good. In order to start this long-term partnership, we suggest first for you to take a closer and deeper look at how far your business has come, carefully assess your needs at the moment and where you want to go.
As soon as you do this, we recommend contacting a logistics engine provider so they can professionally assess your needs, and look at the aspects where you can work together, and how they can propel you to greater heights. Once you come to an agreement, the magic comes after. See how seamless and mind-blowing your end-to-end fulfillment processes can change with the help of the vast network these logistics engine providers have set up. And when you finally have time to relax, we would really appreciate it if you can come back to us and say hello, and tell your success story so we can inspire more people to do the same. Of course, that is before you come back to your strategy-building, and wild ideas on how to make your business reach the heights greater than you have ever imagined.
So back to the drawing boards, let’s do this!