The past year and a half has been rough for retail. Brick and mortar stores have been battered by lockdowns and restrictions, with many locations closing down and consumers turning their attention to online shopping.
With concerns still high about COVID variants, many consumers will be doing their holiday shopping online again this year. Online retailers will be expecting a busy year, with Cyber Monday likely to be the peak of sales. But this increase in orders means your online store needs to be prepared for the logistics of delivering your products in top condition and in the time you promise.
US Consumers Will Be Buying on Cyber Monday
According to Inc, 50% of US consumers plan to finish their 2021 holiday shopping before Cyber Monday. Last year many consumers faced delayed shipping and inventory shortages that left them struggling to find their ideal gifts and get them delivered in time for the holidays.
As Black Friday and Cyber Monday approach, retailers can expect to see a huge surge in orders. The way these increases in shipments are dealt with can greatly affect your retail establishments’ reputation, and if conducted poorly, can cause loyal customers to desert you.
Now is the Time to Optimize Your Logistics
Customer experience during fulfillment, shipping, delivery, and returns should be the highest priority to encourage repeat purchases and drive additional sales. Logistics need to be well thought out and planned ahead of time to ensure minimal disruptions in the supply chain and the fewest disgruntled customers possible.
Ensure Your Inventory, Fulfillment, and Shipping are Prepared
Getting your customers to make an order is only half the battle during Cyber Monday deals. A key aspect of Cyber Monday for retailers is ensuring that your inventory, fulfillment, and shipping are all ready to deal with the spike in orders.
Is your fulfillment team or partner prepared to deal with the influx of Cyber Monday orders?
You need to have sufficient warehouse space for increased inventory and temporary or additional staff to manage the extra work such as quality assurance and picking and packing.
If previous years lead you to believe you will have an exceptional increase in orders, it’s a good idea to partner with a logistics company to help relieve some of the burdens that Cyber Monday brings.
Rethink Logistics Ahead of Cyber Monday Deals
One of the difficult areas for retailers is to manage small additional shipments outside of their regular shipments. What you may not know as a retailer is that there are options like truckload or less-than-truckload specifically geared towards solving these issues.
The next struggle is choosing from one of the tens of thousands of available carriers– how do you know which are reliable and offer these services? And how do you ensure you are getting market rates?
Cyber Monday is one of the biggest days of the year for retail, but also for shipping. It’s important to arrange your shipping as far in advance as possible.
Don’t Let Supply Chain Breakdowns Destroy Cyber Monday Profits
You have probably been dealing with costly breakdowns in your supply chain this year due to numerous factors such as driver and shipping container shortages. This then in turn leads to dismal on-time percentage and often a lack of visibility into the status of your shipments.
These issues are not going away on Cyber Monday, so it is essential to find a freight company you can trust that has reliable driver and carrier relationships and gives you visibility of the supply chains.
If you don’t have a carrier to make the one-off shipments of a truckload or less to adjust for your Cyber Monday volume, it can spell disaster for your holiday season revenue. You may need to pay excessive rates to ship your orders or deliver them late, perhaps even after the holidays. Neither of these are appealing options during the most important season for retailers.
Take the Stress Out of Shipping
As with fulfillment, if you are not used to shipping high quantities of your product, then it can be simpler and cheaper to partner with a shipping company. The end-to-end shipping options mean you don’t have to deal with the headache of delivery and will find it easier to manage your influx of orders with the staff and resources you have.
Learn how FMI can help you get your orders delivered on time this Cyber Monday…