We use a fulfillment management software that is a gold mine, data-wise. It is up to our clients to decide how much or how little information to use. Those that take deep dives versus shallow swims into their inventory, ordering and shipping reports learn more about what is and isn’t working in their businesses. Through an online fulfillment portal, they can pull up information on what is selling and who is buying it or monitor the distribution of supplies to their stores and offices around the country.
Here are some examples of how your fulfillment management software can become your company’s fortune teller.
The best way to figure out the future is to look at the past. Our system allows clients to run reports that show their inventory month to month. If you study several years’ worth of these reports, chances are you will pick up on patterns. Perhaps the widgets that you sell move off the shelf slowly in the summer months. By identifying that trend, you could make a change in your manufacturing schedule and make fewer widgets in the months leading up to summer. Or, to push those widgets off the shelf in the summertime, you could increase marketing or offer discounts and special deals.
A fulfillment system should store every detail possible about your items. Two biggies are expiration dates and lot numbers. By running reports on expiration dates, you’ll know when it is time to destroy old merchandise. Lot numbers are vital in cases of consumer product recalls. Using lot numbers, you can find out which customers bought the products that have been recalled and contact them.
Businesses don’t always think of fulfillment as a marketing tool but they should. The shipping reports that fulfillment software provide tells you who is buying what. That allows you to make your marketing to these customers more targeted. For example, if you know a customer bought items from last summer’s toddler clothing collection, you can send them information about this year’s newest offerings or let them know about clearance sales for toddler apparel. You can identify your most loyal or highest volume shoppers and offer this group a special discount or bonus gift on their next purchase. Thanks to detailed inventory and shipping data, you know more about your customers and their buying habits so your marketing messages can be more personal, precise and ultimately, more successful.
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