Omnichannel retail is the 500-pound gorilla all supply chains want and fear. According to MarketWatch, the global omnichannel retail market will see a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.48% through 2023. While omnichannel enables multi-channel approaches to increase efficiency and improve sales opportunities, challenges remain. Shippers that wish to ensure effective retail shipping in the omnichannel age need to understand the risks within omnichannel retail shipping, how omnichannel shipping and visibility work together, and a few best practices to guarantee its success.
What Risks Reside Within Omnichannel Retail Shipping?
Omnichannel Shipping Requires Better Service, Lower Rates, and End-to-End Visibility
How to Ensure Effective Shipping in Omnichannel
- Build your services and capabilities around the customer experience. Focusing on the customer experience has a proven record of boosting customer service and driving sales, explains Jeremy Bodenhamer of Entrepreneur magazine. In other words, shipping in omnichannel retail depends on customer needs and wants, so shippers need to ensure customers can see all shipping options from a single platform.
- Unify your supply chain strategies into an overarching, centralized database. While operating in silos was great for a channels approach, omnichannel requires a blending of information across all platforms. It is impractical to upgrade all systems. But, the next best thing is integrating systems to work together and to rely on a unifying platform, such as a transportation management system (TMS), to provide the connection.
- Take advantage of localized services, including returns. Physical locations can handle many of the challenges created by omnichannel retail, including higher return rates. More importantly, returns and visits to brick-and-mortar locations will naturally lead to increased customer activity and business for your brick-and-mortar stores.