Order processing management refers to handling and fulfilling customer orders. It’s a system that ensures each customer’s order is picked, packed, and shipped correctly. Depending on the size of the business, order processing can take place in a warehouse where pickers, sorters, and packers fulfill orders together or in a small, dedicated space with fewer people handling it.
Failing to manage your order processing system could lead to problems in business operations and profit loss. That’s why it’s important to keep the gears turning for flawless order management services.
The Basics of Order Processing Service
Working on accomplishing the basics flawlessly, then overdelivering on those tasks is key to successful order processing management. There are five main steps in a basic order processing management workflow, although sometimes it may continue if a customer initiates a return process. Let’s look at the major steps in order processing:
Order processing management starts when a customer orders a product from your store. This step aims to gather all the necessary information for collecting payment and completing delivery. It includes payment card information, delivery address, and other relevant details.
Some businesses take orders over the phone, but almost everything is done on the internet through online shopping carts and checkout buttons. Once the order is confirmed, we move on to the next part of the order processing management workflow.
In this step, a worker or automated system selects the customer’s desired product and prepares it for shipment. This part of the process requires efficiency to avoid errors. Several strategies for order picking can help speed up the process.
Picking items off the order list one at a time is called discrete picking. Zone picking is where all items in the same area of the storage space are picked regardless of order or destination. In batch picking, orders are arranged in batches, and items are picked per batch.
Another part of the process that requires accuracy is sorting orders. This is the part where you sort which items belong to which order, then separate orders according to their destination. It helps you monitor which orders were completed and ready to be shipped. Mistakes in this step cost money and waste time, so meticulousness is important.
During the packing process, items are packed into appropriate shipping boxes, weighed, and labeled with recipients’ addresses and delivery instructions. Regardless of how the orders are packed, you should prioritize dimensions and weights that can be easily handled and are cost-effective.
High-quality packaging contributes to a good customer experience. Improper packaging may cause lost or damaged orders, which ruins the shopping experience for customers.
You must analyze and decide the best methods to deliver a product efficiently. Proper order management service also ensures that the order is handled and delivered correctly to the customer.
You should have a trusted courier partner that provides tracking information for you and the customer to monitor the package’s whereabouts. An estimated delivery time will also benefit customers and ensure their orders will be delivered.
How to Make Order Processing Management More Effective
Order management service is crucial in ensuring a great customer experience. Efficient order processing management benefits your overall business operations and strengthens customer loyalty.
Ecommerce businesses encounter a lot of challenges tackling order management services. However, there are also many ways to resolve those challenges and improve your processes. Let’s revamp your order processing workflow and replace bad practices with the following steps and strategies to reduce mistakes and increase efficiency.
Automate as much as you can
Order management systems can help you automate repetitive tasks and decisions to help save time and make the process more efficient. In most ecommerce businesses, orders are processed automatically using order processing management software.
With human error as the top cause of fulfillment issues, automation is necessary to operate the business properly. Automated order processing can minimize the possibility of errors and delays, which means fewer order returns, cancellations, and negative feedback. Automation also ensures a smooth workflow, thus, reducing the issues in the overall business process.
Keep your order-processing workflow up to date
You may have to invest in high-tech ordering software to update your workflow, or you can simply refine your process. Your current system may work well for your backroom operations, but it can also be outdated enough to cause longer processing times and other minor issues here and there.
Working out the kinks in the process and updating the system means you are keeping up with the times. It guarantees smooth operations and satisfied customers all the time. Restructuring the system based on what works well for most customers shows that you care about them, leading to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Monitor your inventory diligently
Keep accurate inventory records and regularly update the info on your online shop. Customers need to know which items are in stock and which ones aren’t when ordering from your store to avoid any issues in order processing management.
You must be on top of all your inventory levels, especially for fast-moving items. Ensure that all products are always in stock to keep the orders coming and the order management service flowing smoothly.
Ask for feedback
After a successful delivery, some businesses contact customers to ask for input or answer inquiries about the product. They conduct regular surveys to analyze customers’ feelings about the processing workflow, the service, or the product quality. Feedback from your clients can give you insight into how you can improve your order processing system.
Based on what your customers say, you can work with your order management service provider to optimize and improve your strategy. You can use the negative feedback to repair broken systems and resolve customer pain points. And positive feedback lets you know what you’re doing right and which part of the system doesn’t need to be changed or corrected.
Ecommerce companies benefit from outsourcing order processing with order management service providers, especially small to midsize businesses. Outsourcing order processing means trained order management service personnel will manage the process, leading to fewer errors and smoother workflow.
The flexibility offered by order processing outsourcing companies can help you create a custom order processing management solution. Working with outsourced staff will help minimize overhead and process-related costs.
Order processing management is at the core of ecommerce business operations. The 5-step basic order processing workflow ensures that outbound orders are well prepared, packaged, and shipped to the right customer. It may seem easy to accomplish, but simple mistakes anywhere in the process can cost a lot of money.
There are many ways to ensure efficient order processing operations. Automating and updating the processes helps in ensuring smooth workflow and flawless execution. Keeping track of your inventory levels also helps in successful order prep and delivery. You can still improve even post-purchase by connecting with your customers and asking for feedback.
Most importantly, one of the best ways to ensure successful order processing management is to let the experts handle it. Outsourcing order processing operations guarantees better workflow handling and fewer mistakes, leading to increased productivity and profitability. So start looking for an order processing outsourcing vendor today!