For mid-market retailers who are far beyond the small business stage, but are still competing with the giants like Walmart and Amazon, e-commerce can be a make-or-break proposition for your business. If implemented properly, e-commerce can significantly help increase sales. Those just starting in the field must have the right people in their corner, like Proxima360, an IT company specifically focused on working with retailers.
One of the biggest challenges that mid-market retailers face with e-commerce is optimizing order fulfillment. The retail giants typically have contracts in place with shipping companies because of the sheer amount of products they are moving on a day-to-day basis, or even sometimes have their own internal distribution networks. Still, when mid-market retailers are trying to compete with these larger retailers, they have to find a way to distribute their goods effectively and efficiently.
Reducing operational costs
An excellent way for retailers to increase their profit margins is to reduce operational costs. Retailers must ensure that fulfillment is properly optimized by reducing carrier and return costs. Proxima360 helps strategize with companies to find the best tools and strategies to reduce this overhead, whether through increasing warehouse efficiency or helping improve POS systems.
Shipping costs can also be reduced by adequately promoting your products. Proxima360 can find fulfillment warehouses that will reduce the distance your products have to be shipped. Featuring products housed in warehouses closer to a customer’s location can ensure that you are not overspending on shipping costs. Although forming this network may seem intimidating at first, it can substantially increase your bottom line in the long run.
Understanding your inventory
Retailers should have a better understanding of their inventory to manage e-commerce efficiently. Knowing what you will have in your inventory before it arrives will help you properly prepare for solutions like ship-from-store or buy-online-pick-up-in-store. These options can help increase your profit significantly, as adding anything that increases customer convenience can drive more sales.
With e-commerce, you don’t have the benefit of a physical storefront and in-person associates to market your products via in-person sales. Nevertheless, there are strategies that mid-market retailers can use to optimize their online storefront and achieve their desired sales results. Understanding your sales is integral to creating greater sales volumes, because it allows you to market the right products to the right people, at the right time.
Better metrics and insight
Unfortunately, the metrics available to mid-market retailers aren’t always accurate. Proxima360 works with companies to improve their metrics and reporting platforms, allowing them to understand their sales better and perform more accurate forecasting. These metrics will more accurately reflect your business and help further determine your strategy for operating your e-commerce brand.
While the insight you are receiving from your current platforms may seem sufficient, having more information is always better for e-commerce operations. You can watch a customer in a brick-and-mortar store as they browse and formulate some degree of understanding behind their intentions for making a purchase. The demographic information alone that you can gain with the help of Proxima360 is invaluable.
Something else that mid-market retailers often fail to do is measure the impact that in-person retail sales have on online sales. Proxima360 recognizes that, while online sales have become a significant driver of business growth, consumers are still engaging in in-person retail activities. People still aren’t ready to give up the physical shopping experience — be it trying on clothes to make sure they fit and look good, or checking out a product to ensure it lives up to expectations. Certain things can’t be done through a computer.
Implementing platforms to improve your understanding of your business’s inventory, sales, and other metrics will go a long way in helping you increase your profits. Gaining insight is the first step in strategizing for ways to improve your business. Partnering with a company such as Proxima360 will ensure that you are finding the right tools and strategies based on your company’s unique needs.