A common issue for the small parcel shipping, more specifically ecommerce shipping industries, is that the understanding of who makes up the market, what they want, and how to ship most efficiently has changed, but shippers haven’t.
There are plenty of ways the small parcel shipping industry has changed in recent times, but there are five things in particular that need to be understood to improve supply chain management tactics and to save money shipping: consumer make up, freight shipping, carrier concerns, data needs, inventory emphasis.
One thing that parcel shipping businesses needs to learn is is that their old conceptions of who their market is has changed. It isn’t just a younger millennial shoppers you’re trying to appeal to. A good majority of people now shop online, the variation comes in how different generations go about it. There are a lot of baby boomers and Gen-Xers who like online shopping, too, but they prefer US ecommerce industries. They’re less likely to be ordering from other countries. This information is important for small parcel shippers to know for targeting their audience. Part of supply chain management is knowing who you’re selling to.
Focus on Freight
A lot of shippers still feel that freight shipping is still what deserves most of their attention. The last mile of delivery is often the hardest part of supply chain management to solve. As ecommerce sales increase and small parcel shipping becomes a more prominent business, supply chain management needs to focus more on last mile delivery of parcel shipping, not freight. Billions and billions of packages are shipped every year, and those numbers are continuing to increase. Businesses are feeling quite a few effects based on the increase of small parcel shipping, and it is also influencing the parcel carrier industries.
Parcel Carrier Concerns
When it comes to shipping your goods, a lot of businesses have grievances with certain parcel carriers and don’t trust either FedEx, USPS, DHL, or UPS to handle their ecommerce shipping, and as every business has strong and weak points, those concerns may be valid, but that’s why multi-carrier solutions are necessary for parcel shipping and distribution. Regardless of experiences you may have once had with one FedEx or UPS some years ago, they may be able to provide better options for your ecommerce shipping business than the competition, which could mean you’re missing good opportunities to save money shipping.
Shipping Data Needs
There are still a great deal of ecommerce businesses and parcel shippers who don’t understand the significance of shipping data. Retailers have new external sources of shipping data to optimize their supply chain with item sourcing, inventory planning, multi-channel order capture, fulfilment and delivery. It’s important for small parcel shippers to have knowledge of the who, what, when, where, and how to optimize your supply chain and boost ecommerce shipping sales.
Emphasis on Inventory
One final thing that parcel shippers need to understand is that inventory is very important, not just to the ecommerce business, but to the customer. Consumers need to know about your inventory. In-store and online shopping are becoming one. Consumers want the ability to feel and experience products first hand before they buy, but they could be in the store to see it while looking at costs and parcel shipping services on their phone. Taking your company from thinking solely in terms of ship-to-store to include ship-from-store takes some work, but parcel shipping and online ecommerce shipping sales are becoming essential to the industry.
While there are a lot of changes to the shipping industry, there are still things which stay the same. Supply chain management still depends on consistency, accuracy, and precision. Understanding and adjusting for the above ecommerce shipping industry changes, however, can help boost your supply chain and make your small parcel shipping business more successful. Don’t keep old and obsolete methods of supply chain management hold your ecommerce company back. Consider small parcel shipping best practices and decide what’s good and what changes you can embrace to bring your supply chain to the next level.