Previously, shopping meant going to the store and choosing what you wanted; store managers could track orders easily with ledger entries, and later, an electronic spreadsheet. However, with multiple channels of sales, additional stores, online selling, shipping to other locations and so on, managing orders has become a lot more difficult.
Order Management System
To put it simply, it is a solution that lets you view and manage all your orders received in a central location. It helps you organize and automate all the actions that need to occur to enable customers to get the products they ordered within a short time and in good condition. It allows you to monitor the entire purchase journey of your customer – from the moment they click on the Buy button, up to the time it is delivered, and if it is returned as well.
How an order management system can help your business
In today’s world of high-octane competition, business owners need to be work-ready at any given time or place. Order management systems help to record and collate all the details with regard to sales and purchases in one platform. Business owners can manage the fulfillment processes, keep track of the orders better, and save time. Without such a system in place, you will need to update your inventory levels manually every time a customer places an order, or an order is delivered; this can become extremely tedious when you have multiple branches and warehouses and a wide range of products.
Using an order management system allows you to send automated real-time updates, especially with regard to inventory, to all your warehouses and channels, so that there is no delay in procuring the product and delivering it to the customer.
Centralized order management
As mentioned earlier, an order management system brings all of your orders into one central location, and helps you to track all orders more efficiently and easily. This is especially helpful when you have multiple sales channels, or when you expand your business and decide to sell through your own site, online marketplaces, physical stores, and so on. Order management system software will help process orders quicker and even sync orders, retrieve status of orders, track progress of the orders, send notifications to customers, and update inventory too.
As you grow, keeping track of your stocks is likely to become more complex, and errors may occur, leading to unfulfilled orders or conflicting orders. An order management system however can perform actions that avoid those errors – for example, back orders for out-of-stock items, disallowing order placement if fulfillment is not possible, reserving goods in a cart that have not yet been checked out, and automatic inventory stock updating. This way, the software can help you avoid both understocking or overstocking. Under stocking can lead to unfulfilled orders, and overstocking means added expense for the business.
Better Order Fulfillment
With a streamlined order processing system in place, you have automation and synchronization. This will help you keep errors down, even when your business grows. Multiple sales channels and locations and high volumes of orders will not upset your order management with a proper system in place; it will help you ensure that your customers get their orders in good time.
When you have a whole lot of data spread across multiple locations or apps, you can hardly make any sense of it. However, with a centralized location for all your orders, you can take data-driven decisions. An order management system can help you understand buying patterns of customers, geographically and demographically. For example, if customers in a particular region tend to order a specific product more, those products can be stocked in the warehouse closest to that region so that you can save on shipping.
As a seller, your job is completed only when the product is actually delivered to the customer. An efficient order management system software helps both you and your customer to track the status of shipping and delivery. Usually, the solutions allow multiple shipping services to be integrated so that you can choose the most convenient one. Cash on Delivery sales can be made possible with these integrations that allow tracking of delivery and processing of payments collected by the shipping agencies.
Customers are the lifeblood of any business; providing them a comfortable and exciting buying experience is a must if you want to retain them and attract new customers. One of the ways to do this is by building trust. An efficient order management system can help you build trust by sending email notifications to your customers automatically whenever there is new information about their order. You can even have the system configured to send personalized emails to thank them for their patronage.