15 Effective Inventory Management Techniques

15 Effective Inventory Management Techniques

A recent study which is done by the Warehousing Education and Research Council found when it surveyed the number of e-commerce companies that the main the reason why many companies face loss is due to a lack of inventory management. These companies doesn’t have effective inventory management techniques.

Inventory Management plays a vital role to run a successful business or company. Have you ever wondered how companies earn a great profit? There are many companies that face loss due to mismanaged inventory. Inventory management is essential for a business or company to be successful.

The clothing retailer H&M company has made it to the top with a $20.3 billion yearly sales. In a decade, retail giant Walmart has grown from $70 to $127 billion and dominating the whole market. This is all possible due to a solid inventory management.

If you want to remain competitive and profitable in the market then you need a cost-saving solid inventory management system that helps to boosts the profit of your business. There are also some companies which get a lot of sale and customers but cannot make a profitable business from it due to lack of inventory management.

Inventory is a placeholder for your money. Holding an inventory ties up with a lot of cash. That’s why it is very important to have good inventory management for growing a company. There are various inventory management techniques are available, and choosing the correct one can lead to providing the correct goods, at the correct amount, place, and time.

Large Inventory. Warehouse Goods Stock for Logistic shipping banner background.

Here you will get some best techniques for inventory management. By implementing these inventory management techniques you can take your business at the next level. But before that lets us know more about inventory management and it’s importance.

Organizations from small as well as large businesses can make use of inventory management to manage their flow of goods properly.inventory management includes aspects like controlling and overseeing purchases from the suppliers as well as customers in order to maintain the storage of stocks and to control the amount of product for sale and order fulfillment. Business is useless without proper inventory management.

As per the research, the data came in front of us that about more than 43% of business owners don’t track their inventory. This is one of the reasons why many companies and businesses cannot grow even though they had a lot of demand in the business.

The survey by Supply Chain Dive shows that one-third of warehouses do not have a proper inventory and warehouse management system which is the main reason why companies are facing loss even after a lot of demand for products. So it is very important to have solid inventory management to run a successful business or company.

Inventory management uses many techniques to keep the right amount of goods on hand to fulfill customer demand and operate the business profitably.

15 Inventory Management Techniques for your business

Here are 15 Inventory management techniques that will definitely help to improve your inventory management and cash flow. Optimal inventory management varies for every company, but there are some general strategies by implementing any business can grow. We have listed here 15 techniques for great inventory management.

1) FIFO ( First in First Out) Method

It is a very important concept and widely used in inventory management by various businesses. It works on the basic principle that the product which comes first in the warehouse should be sold first. In this method First or the oldest stock will be used first.

This method ensures that the oldest stock will be used first which helps to reduce the cost of obsolete inventory. This inventory system is commonly used in several companies and warehouses. The FIFO method is applied to both warehouse management and accounting.

FIFO technique plays an important role in the warehouses that contain perishable products. It is widely used in the food and beverage industries. It helps in Effective management of your warehouse space.

2) Minimum Order Quantity ( MOQ)

Generally, suppliers used to supply the product in whatever quantity which you have ordered from them for your business. But there are many problems we have to face while order certain products from the suppliers because they have minimum order quantity criteria.

A minimum order quantity (MOQ) is the lowest or minimum amount of stock that a supplier is willing to sell or accept. If you are not able to purchase the minimum order quantity of a specific product, then the supplier won’t sell it to you.

The main purpose behind minimum order quantities is to allow suppliers to make more profits while getting rid of more inventory management.
Wholesalers generally don’t prefer doing business in such a way, but in many cases, wholesalers are forced to sell using MOQs because they’re forced to buy a minimum amount of stock from the manufacturer.

3) ABC Analysis

There are many products available in our inventory and it is obvious that we are more focused on the products which have more demand in the market and have high sales. But to manage the inventory effectively it is very necessary that we should give attention to each and every product.
For this Many businesses use the ABC Analysis technique which is the best method to efficiently manage your inventory. In this method, the products are getting categorized into different groups.

ABC analysis is an approach for classifying the products which are present in the inventory as per their consumption values. Consumption value is defined as the total value of an item that is consumed over a specified period of time.

ABC analysis is a method of analyzing which helps to categorized products into three categories: A, B, and C.

Category A

In this category, the products are of high-value but have a low frequency of sales. Such products required more attention because it consists of products which have more financial value.

Category B

In this category, the products are of low value but have a high frequency of sales. In this case, such products may require less attention because they are continuously moving because of high demand.

Category C

In this category, the products are of moderate value and of the moderate frequency of sales. But this also required some attention and financial assessment.

4) Safety Stock Inventory

It is the level of extra stock that is maintained to mitigate the risk of run-out for goods and raw materials due to uncertainties in the supply or demand. It plays an important role in order to avoid stock out and keep customer satisfaction at a high level.

safety stock inventory helps to keep your warehouse and supply chain running smoothly. The goal of safety stock inventory is to make sure that your customers will be satisfied and keep coming back to you.

Safety stock protects against unforeseen variations in supply and demand. In simple words, Safety stock is an additional quantity of products added in the inventory to reduce the risk that the product will be out of stock.

5) Centralize your Inventory

Centralized inventory is a method in which stock is kept in a single location. Businesses generally merge all their products into a single place to make inventory management easy.

Centralizing your inventory has a number of benefits for your business. One of the greatest benefits of Centralize inventory systems is operational efficiency.

Centralized inventory maybe sometimes changing demand. With stock in a single location, it can be difficult to fulfill orders when there’s been a spike in demand in a specific geographic region or weather makes fulfillment impossible from your single warehouse.

Centralize inventory is the key to the profitability of your business.

6)Batch Tracking

Batch Tracking is a method that is used to group and monitor a set of stock that has similar properties. This process is used for the efficient tracing of goods.

It gives you detailed information about the product from raw material to finished goods. It helps you to know where it comes from, and where it went.

There are several benefits of batch tracking like:

  • It helps to improve relationships with suppliers.
  • It helps to identify which products are going to be expired.
  • It has fewer accounting errors.

Batch tracking allows insight into the quality of your finished goods by tracking the raw materials of your suppliers. This identifying your best and worst suppliers which helps you to decide the right suppliers.

7) Dropshipping

It is a very simple method in which there is the direct delivery of the goods from the manufacturer to the customer.

Dropshipping is a supply chain management that allows businesses to reduce their inventory costs by not holding any inventory. It is one of the best inventory management techniques.

It is a very simple method in which we first receive an order then we have to forward it to the supplier and the. The supplier fulfills the order.

There are several benefits of using the Dropshipping technique for inventory management:

  • One of the greatest advantages of Dropshipping is that we don’t have to invest a huge amount of money. It requires very little capital.
  • Dropshipping required fewer overheads Because we don’t have to invest in purchasing inventory or managing a warehouse.
  • Nowadays, dropshipping business can be run from anywhere. As long as you can communicate with suppliers and customers easily, you can run your business from anywhere.
8)Managing Relationships

It is one of the most important factors for running a successful business. A good relationship is very important in business. It is about clear, proactive communication.

It is very that you should have a strong relationship with the supplier to run your business effectively. This will be helpful to you for minimum order quantities. You can ask your supplier for a minimum order quantity so that you don’t have to carry much inventory. Good Relationships play a key role in order to build a successful business with maximum profit.

9)Contingency Planning

If you are running a business there are many uncertain inventory management issues are come in front of us and it is very difficult to fix or resolved those issues on time.

The problems which can arise during inventory management are as follows:-

  • The product has a low frequency of sales takes the maximum space of your warehouse and there is no or little space available for products having a high frequency of sales.
  • The unexpected rise in demand for a specific product and the product is out of stock.
  • Cash flow turns to negative and it is not possible for you to pay for products which you needed.
  • The manufacturer stops the delivery of the product without any prior notice. So it is necessary that you should identify the risk and make a solid contingency plan for better inventory management.
10)Regular Inventory Audit

An inventory audit is defined as the analytical procedure that helps to cross-checks the financial records which match inventory records, or the count of physical products.

It is very necessary to do regular auditing of the inventory in order to have an idea of stock in the warehouse. There are three ways by which the inventory can be tracked

  • Spot Checking-It is the method in which the products are manually counted and cross Check with the actual data. This is generally done for high-value products.
  • Physical Inventory-Many businesses prefer to do counting if the whole inventory only once at the end of the year because of the accounting and tax filling purpose.
11)Set par levels

A par level is defined as the minimum amount of a product that should have on hand of any business. This helps to meet the customer’s demand while also maintaining safety stock in the case of uncertain demand.
The par level is ideal for use Effective management.
If you track par levels in real-time it will help you to track which stocks are depleting faster than others and which products have less demand in the market. It will prompt proactive orders to replenish stock so you don’t run out.

If you don’t maintain par levels properly, you might find yourself in a situation where you cannot fulfill customer demands.The concept of par levels is helpful for warehouse managers and business owners for control of the inventory.

12)Prepare for different Seasonality

There is a massive change in the demand for the product as per the season. So it is very necessary for the business that you should be ready for the changes in customer demand in the market.
Seasonal inventory required stock which is in high demand during particular times. these periods of time often coincide with the different seasons, and companies need to be proactive in preparing for different demand during these key times.
Seasonal inventory can be unpredictable in the market. seasonal inventory can be a challenge to your inventory control plan, making it difficult to prepare for the changes in demand for various products in the market.
So it is necessary to forecast the demand of products from past data to achieve better inventory management.

13)Tracking your sales

Tracking sales and available inventory help in determining what you need to order. Using the point of sale and tracking programs can add to the expense but they will help you to ensure that your customers have what they want while you maintain the minimum amount of stock necessary.

It is very necessary to track inventory levels on time for proper supply chain and critical for e-commerce brands that want to scale up successfully in the market. If you do not properly track your inventory sales it will end up with frustrated customers, excessive inventory, obsolete inventory which is not good for your business.
A good inventory system will help in communicating with suppliers and making demand adjustments. Using an inventory tracking system is the most efficient inventory tracking technique as it helps in achieving better transparency and accuracy than other techniques.

14) Accurate Forecasting

For ideal inventory management requires accurate forecasting of the demands for different products. But the forecasting is not an easy task it requires deep study and analysis of the market. It depends on the various factors
Various Trends for different products in the market.

  • The growth rate of the current year.
  • The demand of customers for specific products.
  • Guaranteed sales from contracts and subscriptions
  • Seasonality and the overall economy

Demand forecasting goes beyond simple estimates of product demand, looking into complex patterns overtime to produce more accurate and timely predictions. Any organization will be able to better manage inventory, increase revenue only after proper inventory management and accurate forecasting of sales.

If you are running a business and want to scale up, then it is very important to investigate the efficiency of their inventory management and forecasting processes.

15) Lean manufacturing system

Lean manufacturing system is an inventory management technique that primarily consists of a set of tools, a philosophy, and a system. It aims to reduce waste, optimize production, and helps put the customer first.

  • The lean manufacturing technique delivers the most valuable product to the customer.
  • It undergoes a process of ensuring all of your value-adding steps flow smoothly without any delays or interruptions.
  • It maps out the steps and processes required to manufacture high-value products.
  • Lean thinking and process improvement is a core part of the company culture.
    Lean inventory management is the calculated approach to increasing the value of a company inventory by identifying and eliminating waste which is left after the manufacturing of the products.
Conclusion

It is very necessary for wholesalers and businesses to focus on inventory management to run their business effectively and having a check on finance and accounts. If there is a lack of management you cannot efficiently get items to customers when they need them. Inventory management will help you to know which products are overstock, under stock, and out of stock. Inventory management helps to keep a check on the financial activities of the organizations.
Inventory management touches many parts of your business. This can lead to different types of problems in the business. Inventory management helps in faster shipping, within the warehouse. you can easily know that you have the inventory on hand to ship. You’ll have more control over your inventory and be able to track it over different locations.
So now it’s time to take control of your inventory by using the above inventory management techniques which will definitely stop you from losing money and make your business more profitable. eVanik gives you the capability to implement all the above mentioned techniques.

20 Reasons to use Order and inventory management systems

20 Reasons to use Order and inventory management systems

What is inventory management in E-commerce?

Inventory management in E-commerce is defined as the method of measuring the amount, pricing, location, and variety of products available for your business in the Market. It is a set of all the processes which are used to control and organize the goods or materials in your industry.

It is very necessary for retailers and e-commerce sellers to focus on inventory management to run Their business effectively and having a check on finance and accounts. It will help you to know which products are overstock, understock, and out of stock. Inventory management helps to keep a check on the financial activities of the organizations.

Logistics and Analytics plays a vital role in the inventory management system. This will helps you in understanding the purchasing trends of the customers.

What is the Order Management system?

An order management system (OMS) is an electronic system used to execute securities orders in an effective and cost-effective manner. E-commerce sellers use order management systems when filling orders for various types of securities and can track the progress of each order throughout the system The order management system(OMS) is also known as a trade order management system.

It is software system that facilitates and manages the execution of trade orders. In the financial markets, an order must be placed in a trading system to execute a buy or sell order for a security purpose.

order management systems offer real-time trading solutions, which allows the customers to know market prices and execute orders in multiple exchanges across all markets, by real-time prices. Some of the benefits that organizations can achieve from an order management system include managing orders and asset allocation of portfolios.

This article will walk you through the importance of inventory management and why E-commerce sellers need an inventory management system for their business.

1)  Speed up pick and pack process

The Order Management system is very necessary for the Effective management of the product. There are many advanced product management tools are available which, helps in exactly locating the item in the warehouse. Nowadays, all this process is controlled by real-time order management software. Once the product is getting out of the inventory, the packaging department receives the data about the product and packs it in the appropriate trunks.

2)Helps to keep an eye on the inventory

It is very necessary to maintain the products in the warehouses. Traditionally there was only one warehouse for one product, but nowadays, businesses are growing day by day with large exponential growth ,which needs effective inventory management. An e-commerce inventory management system tells about the details of the different product availability whether they are under stock, overstock, or out of stock. It keeps deep visibility into multiple warehouses.

3)For effective business practices

Inventory and order management systems help in Efficient business management. Traditionally the workers have to train about the working process of warehouse and products. But today due to digitalization it is very easy to manage. Proper inventory management saves our precious time and gets more value from the team members.3)For effective business practices

4)To delight customer experience

It is very necessary that e-commerce sellers should focus on improving the user experience of their purchasing. Some times e-commerce websites show products in stock, but when customers try to purchase, it shows out of stock. This will reduce the quality of the user experience. To tackle this problem, there should be proper inventory management.

5)To eliminate Deadstock

Having an organization. Planning and forecasting will help to improve the user experience. Having a bulk stock also can create a problem if you are not able to sell the products effectively. e-commerce sellers must eliminate deadstock, and reduce the wastage of inventory. This will reduce the extra storage costs.

6)For more directed Investment

The order and inventory management systems will help you to understand the historical trends regarding the demand for a particular product. This will helps you to know where you have to invest more money to stock the products in the warehouse. This will helps to calculate the quantities of products required in stock.

7)To improve the ability to meet market demands

It is very necessary to predict the future movement of the product demands and the purchase trends to effectively managed inventory. It helps you to give the data about the products and how it is moving. This helps to identify what products are more liked and purchased by the customers.

8)For improving marketing results

It is very important to track the inventory in the online e-commerce website for effective inventory management. Seller’s ratings and search rankings will be enhanced for these e-commerce sellers. It is very necessary to make sure that you are not stockpiling products that will not sell.

9)Helps to lower your stress

As the business grows and expands, it requires effective order and inventory management It is difficult to do manual inventory management. Advanced tools helps you to effectively maintain the orders and inventory management system with maximum efficiency.This will helps to reduce the stress of inventory management.

10)reduce the time required for inventory control.

Effective inventory management will help you to save your time required for managing the inventory. Good inventory management not only helps to reduce the time taken to track the products but also manage the orders.

11)For proper planning and Forecasting

For running a successful business it requires solid Planning. Advanced software will help you to improve demand forecasting by adequate analysis of data trends and movements of the products. This will reduce the handling costs and increases the revenue of the organization. Planning and forecasting will help to improve the user experience.

12)To improve the delivery

It is very necessary to deliver the required product on time. For tracking the movement of the products it is very important to know when the product will arrive and when it will be delivered to its required location. The late delivery creates disappointment in the customers and affects the growth of the business. That’s why it is necessary to have order and inventory management.

13)To ship packed products with integrated partners

Order Management system should be integrated with the logistics companies. This will helps you to choose high rated partners and to send products to the customers effectively.

14)To ensure the efficient changes to the Market

The order management system has several benefits. It will provide greater efficiency in managing orders across the enterprise. The Advanced software for order management system helps in faster response to the customer’s demands and helps to identify the market changes.

15) To Unleash your best fulfillment strategy

An order management system has the capability to integrate with order management software to make it easy for e-commerce sellers to provide options such as pay online and pick from stores, express delivery, or same-day delivery. This will only be possible if you are able to track your complete inventory across all channels and provide your users with all possible fulfillment solutions.

16) Update pricing strategy based on competition analysis

There are Repricing tools available to update the real-time prices of the products as per the market changes. We can update prices in real-time on different marketplaces. This will help you to maintain the consistency of your product’s price along with the consistency of the brand.

17) To Automate your most straightforward tasks

Order Management system allows you to do various tasks like sending notifications to your customers, printing labels, and invoices,etc. It will also help in saving your employees time. The complex tasks are easily managed and completed as far as possible.

18) Increased customer satisfaction

A good inventory management system ensures faster and correct delivery to customers which ultimately results in increased loyalty, sales, and a better brand reputation of the e-commerce sellers. Customer satisfaction is one of the most important things in any business. Customer satisfaction will help in the exponential growth of the organization.

19) Pick a Customized System

The business operations are very complex and difficult to manage. It becomes very important to select an excellent software program that supports all elements involved in the running of the business. When your business grows and your e-commerce needs to change, this will allow you to move to a new shopping cart solution which will minimize the impact on your business activities.

20) For Warehouse Integration

 It is very necessary to manage inventory across different warehouse locations. The inventory management software will provide integration for all the locations. With the help of order inventory management, it is easy to track the status of all the inventory through your computer screen.

 Conclusion

Traditionally the inventory management was very simple and the retailer sells products in front of their shop. Modern brands now have numerous channels to sell through e-commerce and social media. Inventory management software is paired with accurate channel management.

Inventory management touches many parts of your business. If there is a lack of management you cannot efficiently get items to customers when they need them. This can lead to different types of problems in the business. Inventory management helps in faster shipping, within the warehouse. you can easily know that you have the inventory on hand to ship. You’ll have more control over your inventory and be able to track it over different locations.

Hence for the E-commerce sellers, order and inventory management should be on their first priority.

eVanik offers robust Order and Inventory Management Solution for E-commerce sellers.

Top 9 Shipping Aggregators for Online Sellers

Top 9 Shipping Aggregators for Online Sellers

During these COVID-19 outbreak time, consumption patterns have changed tremendously. One siginificant change lockdown has brought that whole digital landscape has been changed.  People livingi n Tier-II and Tier-III cities have become part of digital revolution. They can been seen attending video calls, video meets, e-learning etc. This transformation has also led the buying of essential and non-essential goods from various e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart, Paytm etc and small niche websites of various people.. Online sellers has felt the need to have better control on their product distribution as well as last mile connectivity. Hence, role of shipping aggregators for online sellers became more relevant.

This is giving rise to shipping aggregators, which is benefiting the transportation domain. Shipping aggregators are increasing which helps the e-commerce traders to transport their products to each and every corner of the world.

Almost all the online sellers hire a shipping aggregator to maintain the position of their business. Also it helps the business to grow and expand.

It is very important and useful for the online sellers to hire shipping aggregators to grow their business as one person cannot handle and manage everything. Outsourcing is essential in every kind of business as it leads to better management and reduction in Costa as well.

So, We selected some of the best shipping aggregators for online sellers.

 Advantages of using shipping aggregators for online sellers

  1. Reducing transportation cost: If you own an online business, you have to own or rent vehicles and hire drivers for transportation which will cost you too much. Also, you have to give taxes for your vehicles and pay the bills of the fuel used during the shipment. But if you outsource the transportation, it will result in cost reduction as all the changes will be reduced and you have to pay the minimum fees to shipping aggregators.
  2. Maintenance charges are reduced: When you will provide your own transportation, then you have to maintain all your vehicles. Also, you have make them register for commercial use. The registration cost will also be eliminated if you outsource the transportation.
  3. Better Performance: The businesses that outsource transportation have better performance as they have more time to concentrate on their main work which helps in expansion of the business. Online sellers have time to plan the strategies for future. Also, it becomes easier for them to manage the accounts which is a great relief for online sellers.
  4. Reduction in training cost: When you will provide transportation yourself, you have to provide training to all the delivery boys. But in the case of outsourcing, all the cost of training is handled by the courier service providers.
  5. No stress of liability: If you provide your own shipment, many losses may occur life theft, accidents etc but in case of hiring a shipping aggregator, online sellers are free from these kind of losses and liabilities.
 Things to consider before choosing a shipping aggregator

  • Always choose a courier service provider which provides fast delivery as when the delivery of the products will be late, the customers tend to loose interest in the products and remain unsatisfied.
  • If you run a large scale business, you must look for a shipping aggregator which provides their services at the global or a larger level as to provide shipment to all the customers in each and every corner of the world.
  • You should look for the shipping aggregators who provides you the facilities of tracking and managing your accounts as it is more convenient, helpful and also a effective service for your business. Also, it helps reducing the cost of the system which ultimately helps in gaining profit.
  • Try to choose a courier service provider who support cash on delivery. It will help the business to make a good connection and trust in your customers which will lead to the expansion of the business.
    Best shipping aggregators for online sellers 
    1. Shiprocket:

  • It has 8 shipping partners to give the best services to e-commerce traders which helps the online sellers to expand their business.
  • It is cheap and also offers discounted shipping which helps the e-commerce traders to earn profit by providing reasonable rates to consumers.
  • It also offers 4 types of pricing plans to e-commerce traders so they can choose the plan as per their convenience.
  • It provides the services to 20000+ pin codes on cash on delivery which is very beneficial for online sellers. It is the best shipping aggregator at cheap rates.
  • It provides a dashboard which gives the tracking details of the shipment to the online sellers as well as to the customers.
2. ShipYaari

  • It is the oldest shipping aggregator which makes it trustful for all the online traders.
  • It has 3 pricing plans for online sellers to give online sellers a choice which helps the online sellers to choose a price plan as per their convenience.
  • It gives the plans on monthly, half yearly and annual subscription model.
  • It provides their services domestically and internationally too as it have 2 international and 4 domestic partners. Best shipping aggregator in India.
  • It also offers discounted rates at bulk shipping which gives profit to online sellers.
  • It does not provide multi location pickup which is the only problem online sellers suffers while contracting with Shipyaari.
3. Shipkaro

  • It is very promising and reliable shipping aggregator for online sellers.
  • It also provides 3 pricing offers to the online traders that are individual, business and enterprise to provide convenience to the traders.
  • It provides shipping domestically as well as internationally as it have 12 shipping partners. Best shipping aggregator with COD availability.
  • It gives a huge discount to online sellers for bulk shipping orders.
  • It offers full cash on delivery support at 20000+ pin codes which helps online sellers to expand their business.
4. Pickkr

  • It works on pay per use basis which helps the small scale businesses to grow with little amount of capital.
  • It provides services domestically as well as internationally. It also provides a B2B shipping as well as B2C shipping.
  • It provides the tracking facilities to online sellers as well as to the customers which makes the customers delighted.
  • It provides pickup service as well to multiple locations which benefits the online sellers to make their customers satisfied.
  • It provides services at very low rate so that online sellers can make profit with 3 price plans to provide convenience to online sellers. Best shipping aggregator globally.
  • It also provides a NDR calling support with NDR management tools.
5. Zepo Couriers:

  • It offers courier service to the e-commerce sellers. It has partnership with 6 courier service companies which makes it very effective and efficient.
  • It provides delivery to 15000+ pin codes in India to reach each and every corner of India.
  • It works on a very reasonable price rates and also provides 3 price plans to the e-commerce sellers.
  • It offers discounted rates but not at monthly and half yearly subscription which creates a difficulty to new or emerging online sellers. Best shipping aggregator with huge discounts.
  • It also supports cash on delivery which gives a relief to online traders.
6. Shyplite

  • It works on pay as you go model which helps the new or emerging online sellers as they can pay in parts and not in bulk.
  • Due to pay as you go model, it cannot provide premium advantages which becomes a great reason of large scale seller to not to choose shyplite but this proves the best courier service company for small scale e-commerce traders.
  • It is growing and has 8 courier service companies as its partner.
  • It also provides cash on delivery facility to some of the locations which helps the e-commerce traders to grow. Best shipping aggregator in India.
  • Overall, it provides the services to 26000+ pin codes in India which helps the e-commerce sellers to reach each and every corner of India.
7.  Vamaship

  • It is the cheapest alternative for the e-commerce traders which attracts almost all the online sellers.
  • It provides the shipping facilities globally with 26000+ pin codes to cover whole of the world which is very beneficial for the online sellers as it gives them an opportunity to expand their business.
  • It does not take platform usage fees and only take shipment fees which makes it the cheapest courier service.
  • It provides you a platform to send your customers a customized ‘best buying experience’ notification to delight your customers. Best shipping aggregator with tracking facilities.
  • It also supports cash on delivery all over India with a pickup facility too which helps the online sellers to build a trust of the customers all over India.
8. ShipDroid

  • It provides an easy account management system to the online traders which helps them to calculate their sales.
  • It is economical and provides services at low rates which helps the online sellers to gain profit without pressurizing their customers.
  • It provides a dashboard to online sellers which gives all the tracking details of every minute to customers as well as to online sellers. Best shipping aggregator for online sellers.
  • It supports cash on delivery which facilitates the online sellers to make their customers comfortable and helps in building trust of customers
9. iThink Logistics.

Name No. of partners Pin code services COD facility Platform fees Custom Tracking page
Shiprocket 8 19000+ Yes Yes Yes
Shipyaari 4 10000+ Yes Yes Yes
Shipkaro 13 15000+ Yes Yes Yes
Pickrr 10+ 26000+ Yes No Yes
Zepo Couriers 6 15000+ Yes Yes Yes
Shyplite 12 20000+ No No Yes
Vamaship 14 26000+ Yes No Yes
Shipdroid 2 20000+ No Yes Yes
Think Logistics 6 26000+ Yes No Yes

Conclusion:

 E-commerce is growing day by day which is leading to the emergence of shipping aggregators in transportation sector. There are many benefits of hiring shipping aggregators which majorly are reduction in transportation costs, maintenance charges and training costs. It also helps in better performance.

You should consider many things before hiring a shipping aggregator that are fast delivery providers,  tracking and account manager providers and most importantly if you run large scale business, choose a providers who can service globally.

eVanik provides direct integration with various logistics partners which helps onlines sellers in managing shipping for their e-commerce orders.

Understanding Marketplace Reconciliation for Online Sellers

Understanding Marketplace Reconciliation for Online Sellers

we at eVanik felt the need for complete guide on marketplace reconciliation for all E-commerce sellers. This article will make you understand all the stages where there is revenue leakage and what parameters you should keep in consideration for marketplace reconciliation

Let’s start with the general definition of “Reconciliation” or “Account Reconciliation”.

Account Reconciliation is the process of comparing internal financial records against monthly statements from external sources—such as a bank, credit card company, or a supplier/vendor/customer other financial institution—to make sure they tally with each other. 

In our discussion, the external source is an e-commerce marketplace such as AmazonFlipkartSnapdealPayTM etc.

In every business, reconciliation of accounts is essential to maintain the financial health of the company, detect frauds, errors and discrepancies and ensure long term sustenance and profitability of the company. Using a software like eVanik OneWorld Suite to reconcile your marketplace business does most of the work for you and saves over 99% of time for you, but there is still that bit of human intuition and intelligence required to make the reconciliation process fool-proof.

Many e-commerce sellers are unable to complete the marketplace reconciliation process in a timely and accurate manner, which introduces risks, leakages and losses and eventually winding up of business. Sellers that adopt a more automated and continuous reconciliation approach benefit from a more controlled and preventive environment and reduced risk of misstatement.

To understand the marketplace reconciliation process in detail, we will first list down the basic steps involved in the reconciliation in a traditional business environment.

Now let’s expand the above by understanding the transactional complexities involved in marketplace business. Let us quick understand  the business process flow vs the reconciliation process / challenge involved.

Business Process Parameters Reconciliation Challenges
Buyer Order Status Multiple stages like pending, approved, packed, ready, shipped, delivered, returned Dynamic statuses get updated regularly thereby making it impossible to track on downloaded spreadsheets
Marketplace Payment Cycle Orders get cumulated for a time period and get collectively paid Aggregated payment cycle involve deductions and reserve amount held up to cover future possible returns from customers
Commissions & Marketplace Fee Marketplaces deduct commission charges on all orders Commissions vary basis category, event based seasonality, tier/level of seller, fulfilment model etc. Actual vs Applicable charges
Shipping Shipping charges levied by marketplaces for delivering orders Shipping charges calculated basis weight type (dead weight vs volumetric), distance (Local, Zonal, National) and charged twice in case of customer returns
Returns Orders returned either by buyers or by shipping providers and Replacements Return Status (Received or Not), Damaged or Sellable, courier or customer return
Claims Marketplaces reimburse some amount to sellers against loss or damage caused due to customer / courier or at the Marketplace Warehouse Check claim eligibility, claimed on time (Claim Window), right amount claimed, claim reimbursement status, right amount reimbursed
Cancellations Orders can get cancelled by Buyer, Marketplace or Seller at any stage of the order Orders which are not cancelled by the seller may attract a penalty which may need to be claimed back
Other Charges Marketplaces levy other charges like Fixed Fee, Closing Fee, Packing Fee, Storage Fee and many more. Multiple heads of charges against every order level for thousands of orders across multiple marketplace channels, products and categories is virtually impossible to keep track of.
Payment Settlement Marketplaces pay after keeping themselves covered and deducting the applicable charges and holding a reserve amount. Bulk settlement invites reconciling every single order under various cost heads. Manually doing this will involve huge manpower bandwidth and costs and a very long time.
Inventory Reconciliation Fulfilment models like FBA involve storing sellers inventory at the warehouses owned and operated directly by marketplaces. With no physical ownership and visibility of inventory at FBA type warehouses also involving fast and continuous movement of stocks, it is impossible to keep track of inventory count on a real-time basis. Some marketplaces move the stocks between multiple warehouses and provide a stock statement only once at the end of the month. Inventory also gets damaged, stranded or lost at these warehouses.
Others Other challenges including non-order related costs like advertising fee, storage fee etc Non-order related fees are deducted from the eligible settlement value and a statement is provided at the end of the month.
Accounting Sales, Returns, Commissions, Payments, Reserves, TCS Automating accounting entries into the accounting software used by sellers, ensuring that the same is always matched with the reports provided by the marketplaces and being compliant on GST and other Government requirements.

E-commerce sellers business owners typically spend their maximum time trying to be on top of their reconciliations with marketplace channels. 

However, the results are mostly ambiguous and outdated because of the dynamic nature of e-commerce business. Complexities widen when sellers are doing business with multiple marketplaces and have expanded their operations to various branches across multiple locations.

Manual and spreadsheet reconciliations are good in a situation when orders are limited and sellers are operating in a single marketplace and a single location. When the multiplier effect steps in, manual efforts will not just increase costs and inefficiencies, it will also lead to frustration and loss of sale.

Marketplaces also impose penalties based on their policies and subsequent algorithms configured thereof. Some wrong penalties may get unnoticed and the seller could incur unwanted losses on the same.

Keeping the above in mind, it is absolutely essential that one should have a good payment reconciliation software which has established credibility, is time tested and approved by marketplaces themselves. All of these ingredients are available with eVanik OneWorld Suite, which is helping sellers reconcile and recover millions of dollars arising from reconciliation gaps and leakages.

Here’s what you can expect from a good marketplace reconciliation software.

  • Transactions related to orders, returns, commissions and payments always updated in your panel 24×7
  • Identify wrong charges
  • Provide alerts on claim window timelines
  • Provide reconciliation reports in the format which can be directly raised as tickets to the marketplaces
  • Keep track of your claims with marketplaces
  • Micro analyze gaps in every cost component like commission, shipping, pick and pack charges, fixed and closing fee, carrier damaged without reimbursement, replaced orders not reimbursed, customer refund claims and lots more
  • The system should incorporate the reconciliation reports in-line with the claim and reimbursement policies of the marketplaces
  • Provide profitability statistics at product level incorporating your purchase costs / COGS and GST / Tax rates giving you the true picture so that you can drill down if there are any gaps.
  • Estimated receivables vs actual received at order and product level.
  • Fully integrated and compliant with all popular accounting software like Tally ERP9, Zoho Books, Alignbooks, FCA Integral, Netsuite, SAP, Navision etc
  • Downloadable reports with summary of reports for CXO / Management view

If you are looking for a robust, time-tested and proven marketplace reconciliation and integrated accounting solution for your e-commerce business, look no further. eVanik OneWorld Suite has helped over 12,000 e-commerce companies since 2006 to power-up their performance on marketplaces. To request assitance on Reconciliation click here.

Importance of MultiChannel Inventory Management

Importance of MultiChannel Inventory Management

Multichannel inventory management becomes important for online sellers  who often get confronted with the problem of managing a common / centralized inventory across various channels including their own website, offline store and e-commerce marketplaces. The buyer journey and preference especially on e-commerce marketplaces is largely unknown to the sellers and the need to be optimally stocked up on all channels is the key requirement to win the sales race. Loss of orders due to stock outs and over ordering due to inventory not updated on-time, everytime can lead to serious business disasters.  Sellers would tend to spend more money on the inventory carrying cost than the amount spent on buying the inventory itself. Also the stock which a seller is carrying has depreciation and devaluation risk due to obsolescence or expiry dates. Hence the need to optimize stocks through a robust multichannel inventory management system is essential. Timely reordering and getting on-time stock alerts is also one of the important parameters when building your inventory management system.

In simple words, the opportunity to reach your customers / audiences on their preferred channels at all their journey points is called multi-channel management. While this can be done at a very raw and basic level manually, there are good multi channel ecommerce software available in India and globally to solve this problem.   Most buyers are now using marketplaces like AmazonFlipkartEtsyeBay etc to buy products. Their search behavior is largely dependent on many things like listing quality, product rating etc, but more importantly the availability of the product is the key for them to make the spot decision. As a seller it’s most important to be on that spot all the time.   For a seller it gets harder with more channels and more SKUs to manage as the business keeps growing. This often leads to late orders, penalties, higher return rates and dissatisfied customers. Also, customers really don’t care about the problems or the efforts which sellers face for fulfilling their orders. Their single motto is to get a great shopping experience and be well taken care of.     Overselling is also a key pain area. More than getting penalized for unfulfilled orders, it leads to embarrassment and pain of losing customers. Multichannel inventory and order management software will allow you to create powerful and easy integrations with unlimited channels and give you access to a dashboard from where you can manage and control your inventory and orders centrally.    Agile platforms will start building their own inventory from the first channel that you connect. This could possibly be your best or biggest sales channel. You can use this inventory or modify it to publish it across all your channels. Syncing stock level across your multi channels regardless of how and when they were changed will relieve you from all the problems of managing inventory. A good inventory management software will let you check your stock from anywhere, whether you are at home or even enjoying a vacation with family anywhere in the world.   A lot of sellers try to execute their multichannel order management requirements through spreadsheets like Excel or building custom algorithms in the Excel spreadsheet. But this may not be the right method, as excel is an offline utility and does not have the capability to consume real-time information of orders and inventory coming through various platforms. Real-time inventory synching is crucial to success to get the multichannel inventory and order processing right. Because this delivers strong fulfillment rates, loyal customers and great reputation with marketplaces.    A good multichannel inventory management system will also help you in linking your duplicate SKUs and managing bundles and product combos.    A great tool which connects your products, orders and inventory of all your channels including your marketplace channels, offline store and website is absolutely essential for succeeding and growing your business in a multichannel business environment. This is how a seller can focus more on business and not on inventory.    If you are selling on international marketplaces, one of the advantages of having a multichannel e-commerce order and inventory system is that the seller will have the ability to reach out his products to international customers without needing to invest in physical warehouses.   Due to COVID-19,it has become even more important that you save your valuable time and power up the efficiency of your business. Invest in a good multi channel inventory and order management system for your marketplace and e-commerce business..

Omnichannel Versus Multichannel : In depth Strategic Analysis

Omnichannel Versus Multichannel : In depth Strategic Analysis

Everything existing in this universe has a meaning and when we deep dive to find it, we explore a wider spectrum. Similarly, with an objective to learn more about e-commerce, we landed on its integrated approaches, bringing up the idea of omnichannel and multichannel marketing.

Splitting the words we understood it better.

So, when we talk individually as Omni and channel, Omni is a Latin word that refers to “everywhere or everything” and the channel is “media”. Therefore, omnichannel marketing refers to the marketing process done in every channel holding the same background which means “the channels are integrated”.

On the other hand, comes the multichannel marketing process which is more concerned about the product and promotes a particular product on different channels with any link of one another.

Let’s make it more clear and interesting with infographics. Everything you are looking for about “omnichannel versus multichannel marketing” is now just a glimpse away.

Omnichannel Versus Multichannel : In depth Strategic Analysis

Still confused, here’s a story to take you to the journey of omnichannel and multichannel marketing with a shopping exorbitant girl “Sneha”.

Let’s go shopping!

Major difference 

Since the terms are now comprehensible, let’s take a look at what are do’s and don’t of both these marketing practices.

Challenges you may encounter in Omnichannel and Multichannel

No matter what we do, we certainly have to face some challenges. But knowing about upcoming challenges can help you reduce the risk and plan for the future.

Do’s And Don’t of both the strategies

Both these channels are equitable in one or the other way. Now it’s your turn to choose.

Which model to choose?

Everything you should know about warehouse management systems.

Everything you should know about warehouse management systems.

It is believed that the journey of warehouse management started in ancient times when farmers thought to keep a record of grain from the crop.

All they wanted was to use the record so that they could prevent famine.

With time and technology, the process turned out to be fast and tracking became easier.

However, the basic concept of warehouse management never changed. Therefore, it can be defined as “managing everyday operations of a warehouse”.

The process includes arranging warehouse and physical inventory management, maintaining appropriate equipment, conditioning of product, managing new product, space management, packaging, stock receiving, and tracking.

Hence, improving overall warehouse performance!

And “an application or software designed to optimize the method of storage by controlling and administrating the operations in a warehouse is known as a warehouse management system”.

This was a glimpse of all the content that we are going to discuss in today’s blog. Let’s first start with understanding the basics of warehouse management systems.

What does a warehouse management system do?

A warehouse management system controls and manages the process of stock storage with the aim of providing consistent availability of the product.

It is a software supporting day to day operations in a warehouse, giving you a centralized system to control the process of storage.

There are many other benefits of using a cloud-based warehouse management system for your business growth.

Benefits of a modern cloud-based warehouse management system

With technically growing nations and advanced customers who mostly prefer digital mediums for all their purchases, it is the right idea to adapt the smartest technology.

And a perfect match for that, in today’s world, is moving to the “Best cloud-based e-commerce management system”.

  • It will help you in saving your precious time by integrating multiple complex channels at once.
  • Connect you directly with all the leading e-commerce marketplace platforms, shopping carts, accounting ERPs, 3PL providers, and Payment Gateways.
  • It will help you to lower the upfront cost as you don’t need to hire an IT specialist and no longer need countless software or hardware.
  • With a cloud-based system, there is no upgrade or maintenance fee. And still, you can always use the most upgraded version.
  • You can now quickly expand your supply chain operation and meet all the market expectations with a modern cloud-based management system.

Therefore, the tool helps in providing digital support to all your warehouse management processes starting from receiving goods until delivery of the product.

Warehouse management process

The process of warehouse management involves the following steps: receiving goods, put away and storage, order picking, packing, and shipping.

All these processes involve certain functions and you can always optimize your functions according to your business needs.

1.   Receiving of goods

The process of warehouse management starts with receiving the product and unloading it from the vehicle.

Here you have to ensure that you received the right product, in the right amount and right condition.

Don’t just receive but validate!

When the shipment arrives, make sure to check and validate the product, which means you have to check the quality of the product.

Quality control here can help you in making further processes smooth. It involves checking the goods you ordered thoroughly and then taking them forward to your inventory.

If any product is damaged, keep it aside and inform about it in real-time.

Unload the products and check if the number of boxes is the same as mentioned in the

delivery shipping notice i.e. you have to check the product count.

Check all the return documents such as invoice and packing slip.

After all these processes are done you have to prepare goods received note mentioning the details of the products you received.

The details include the description, quality, date of receiving, GRN number and so on.

This will help you to make entries in the inventory about the product and you can also cross-check that you received all that you ordered.

Finally, you are ready to arrange the product in your inventory accordingly.

Receiving a new product!

 With a growing business, it is quite obvious to expect a frequent rate of new products in inventory.

With new products, you have to play a little wiser!

Remember to mark enough space for newly arrived products in your inventory and guide your team about the product and its handling.

Add necessary labels and barcodes to the product at the time of putting away and don’t forget to update your inventory. As in this way your product will be ready to sell.

2. Put away and storage

Similarly, for every product once received, you have to put away the product in the right, place and keep the product in the best suitable condition.

Doing them right can help you to get the most optimum results in the future.

Make sure to do the “material handling right” for this entire process.

As by handling the product right, there will be less damage leading to more satisfactory delivery and you know the rest.

Use this principle and optimize the process!

 “Minimal touches of goods,” the principle states that you should directly put away goods to its final location.

The fewer the touches are, the less will be the probability of product damage.

Also, make sure to do the put-away process on the day you receive stock.

It is often seen that when the new orders arrive, the team turns to be busy working on it. Hence, the priority of that moment is picking and packing.

keeping the new stock aside. And this may negatively affect your warehouse.

The put-away process and storage go hand in hand, once you are ready with where to keep the stock, make sure to consider the storage required by your products.

The conditioning of products must be given a high priority depending upon the needs of the product.

You can also use the ABC tool!

 According to this tool, the products get classified into three sections.

1. A Item- These are the high-value products with low sales frequency.
2. B Item- These are moderate value products with moderate sales frequency.

3. C Item- These are low-value products with high sale frequency.

You can keep C items closest to the packaging area and Vice Versa for A item.

You can also categorize the product according to its requirements.

For example, if the product is very heavy, try to place it with the proximity of the door, or if a product is required to be kept at a particular temperature, make sure to place it accordingly.

Rearrange the warehouse with time!

 No doubt the process is really time-consuming, but good management is all about investing the right resources at the right time for optimum future results.

Right?

So do not hesitate to rearrange your warehouse according to the need of time.

As there could be some products that are at high demand during summers and during winters no one wants them.

Once the put-away and storage are done to your product, you start getting orders and therefore the process of order picking starts.

3.   Order picking

As the name itself signifies its meaning, the process involves picking up the goods as per customers’ demand.

It is found that this process involves the highest percentage of all warehouse operational expenses, comprising 55% of it.

The process of order picking involves selecting the item from the warehouse to satisfy all the independent customer orders.

Therefore, it is recommended for you to follow a smart technical way to analyze the process.

Choosing the right order pick up system involves the requirements of your product by customers.

Since the requirement of every product is different, it is not necessary that one plan will work for all.

So, here are some of its types!

1. Zone picking- In this method, the inventory is divided into zones and the order picker will only work for one specific zone.

The process of zone picking works best for businesses with high order volumes and multiple daily ships.

The process may take more days for shipping as products are passed around in the warehouse.

2. Batch picking- A picking process that mostly works well for any business, that follows the motive to fast order fulfillment.

In this process, instead of working for a particular zone.

The team works for the orders to pick them up in batch and move for the packaging process.

The process is considered best for businesses with high order volume and has a common SKU.

3. Discrete picking or single picking- In this process, the team works for one order at a time, the team will only move to the next order when the first order is entirely complete.

This is usually done by small businesses, businesses with a small team or business working for heavy goods.

4. Wave picking- It is similar to discrete or single picking process, the only difference is, in this process orders from all the zones are picked and orders are then sorted as per requirement.

So these are all the picking techniques, you can choose or follow any of them.

But don’t forget to move to the next, till you find the best!

4. Packing the product

Once the product is picked, packing is to be done for further shipment.

All you need to be definite about is, you are shipping the right product to the right customer and of course with the right packaging.

Packing is much more than just tossing your products in a carton.

You have to be sure about the box size in which the product is to be shipped, packaging material and have to make sure if the product is not damaged.

Don’t miss to check!

Before moving to the package, make sure to check the product once with the order slip.

Once you are sure about the product, move ahead with a light packaging so that the weight of packaging does not add more to the shipping of the product.

And also make sure that the packaging of the product supports its efficient transportation.

5. Shipping

Shipping is the final and one of the most important steps of this process. Once the product is packed, it is now ready to be shipped to your customers.

Reports depict that 63% of customers buy more items if the delivery takes minimum time and has the option of free delivery.

Therefore, this process needs more tracking as you have to make sure that the right product goes to every customer without creating any hassle.

Successful shipping of products confirms that your process of warehouse management is right!

Make a right decision

There are different ways to adapt a warehouse management system and choosing the best one increases your chance of right management.

Let’s have a closer look.

1. Standalone warehouse: This management process involves managing the functions to the warehouse with some advanced functionality.

The functions that standalone warehouse manages are management of warehouse inventory, date tracking expiration, Recordkeeping, Inventory analysis and Directs putaway, order picking, and packing slip support.

It is interesting to note that it can be integrated with other systems and can be used.

Remember, if you have a small business this is an option to make a move!

The standalone warehouse system will take you ahead of traditional and manual systems without a high financial expenditure, unlike the supply chain and ERP.

2. Supply chain: The process helps in the coordination and integration of different supply chain processes.

To understand it better we can say that in this process all the manufacturers, material providers, transportation providers, distribution centers and retailers work together.

As communication and collaboration may become difficult when many companies work together, with the process of supply chain management, this is not a problem.

The process helps warehouses to integrate with suppliers, carriers and retailers.

If you are an e-commerce company or a company working with a large volume of orders from a different party. This process can be right for you.

3. Enterprise resource planning: ESP can be understood as an important system to manage everything in your business.

This system helps you in integrating your warehouse systems with many different tools and systems.

Like accounting and finance tools, human resources systems, point-of-sale systems or order managing systems, project management systems, and compliance systems.

Any business can go for ERP but is considered to be an expensive method as it could take a high budget to hire a consultant to hire with ERP procurement or sometimes a large IT team to manage it.

Using the right software for warehouse management!

The best way to manage a warehouse is by using good warehouse management software which will not only reduce the cost of your back office work but will also help you to automate and digitize all your work.

And yes, all the high growing retailers use one or the other automation tools. So if you want to be one, let’s find the right tool for you.

With warehouse management software you can make your work convenient and the workflow systematic, It can help you in many ways like;

1. Control and track- With a warehouse management system software, it will be much easier to control and track the transfer and storage of your product in the warehouse.

With the software, you can scan and keep a note of all your products and inventory.

So, no paperwork and the data of your warehouse will be on your fingertips!

And you can anytime analyze data of goods shipment, payment, etc.

2.  Reduce risk- While working on your warehouse manually there are high chances of errors. The WMS software helps you work with minimal errors.

You can now trust technology!

3. Make your own plan – The warehouse management system software provides you a chance to create your own optimized process.

You can create a process that not only suits your business but also suits your product storage in the best way.

4. Branding – A quick and accurate delivery of products will help you in improving your relationship with customers.

This will help you to build up a good image of your brand.

5. Provides security – As we know, all the information traditionally was stored in hard copies with a high probability of loss in data but now you can easily deplete the paperwork and secure your information.

Also with the software, every employee will have a different identity to work with and make transitions, increasing accountability and decreasing the risk of theft.

6. Reduce operational expenses- With software, it is easier to manage all the processes in one go.

You can easily manage the process of warehouse management system i.e. receiving, putting away, picking, packaging and shipping from one common point.

It will also help you in understanding your product and its storage reducing the damage of certain perishable goods.

Even in the case of non-perishable goods, you will have an idea of the efficient use of space and labor for them.

7. Optimizing customer service- A good customer bond is all you need to grow your business, and right warehouse management software understands that.

It optimizes the delivery process right from the product order to shipping by accurately finding the item availability and exact delivery dates.

8. Better ERP, better you- The right software will help you to enhance the enterprise resource planning, making your outgoing shipment accurate and reducing chances of return.

So if you are looking for the right software with all the above features, eVanik is here for you.

Are “Inventory management and warehouse management systems” the same?

Whenever we talk about warehouse management, the term inventory management comes along.

But are they both the same?

The functions of inventory management and warehouse are somewhat similar, as both of them help in tracking parts and products, picking, packing, shipping and receiving the order.

But critical analysis helps in understanding the major difference in both of them.

We can say that inventory management is an initial step in the warehouse management system.

For example- If you want to know about the location of any product, the warehouse management system will help you to know the exact location.

However, the inventory management system will reflect that the product is somewhere in the warehouse.

Another way to understand the difference is that the warehouse system consists of multiple compartments and rows for a particular product providing the entire detail of it.

On the other hand inventory management can only provide information on how much is present here.

A final look over!

The warehouse management system supports managing the processes of the warehouse, starting from receiving the product to delivery.

A right system ensures less damage and high profit for your business, all you need to do is follow a smart management process in every step.

The system gives you convenience and provides your customer’s satisfaction. Moreover, you can always keep track of the work done and improvise accordingly.

Since change is what makes you better, a good WMS software will help you to understand and create a strategy to be better, actually to be the best.

How are online returns managed for competitive advantage?

How are online returns managed for competitive advantage?

In this world of electronic commerce, a huge percentage of online sales occur every year. The process of online retail starts from raising in demand for products from the buyer, the retailer initiates the process of delivering the product. Once the product gets delivered, everyone gets their share of profit.

But what if the customer says “I need to return this product”?

That’s where the process of online returns management comes in picture, Yes! There is an entire process of returns management. And learning about it is all it takes to step up and move ahead of the crowd.

The process of return management involves four major activities:
  • Return avoidance is all about controlling the return rate to the maximum extent by looking keenly into the product before delivery.
  • Gatekeeping involves screening of return goods to sort and analyse the product in a systematic manner.
  • Reverse logistics involves all the steps that occur in the process of product return.
  • Value maximization is the process of doing return management in such a way that it contributes to gaining high competitive advancement.

ERIM report series depicts that in many businesses return can be over 20% and can be very costly to the company. But with the right knowledge of return management, you can use it as a competitive advantage.
So before we talk about ways to use it, let’s first understand the reasons that cause high returns.

Reasons contributing to high return

5 D’s– To make the learning a little handy we have combined the major reasons together, now you only have to remember the five D’s and all the reasons can be seen at once. 5 D stands for:

Different Size

Different Colour

Different product

Damaged Product

Don’t need anymore

It is seen that there are high chances of delivering a different product be it in size, color or altogether another product.

Studies on E-commerce says that 20% out of all the returns are due to damage in product 23% of returns are due to difference in size and color, 23% received wrong product and remaining percentage counts in others category.

So now it is pretty clear that there are many reasons contributing to the return of the product and there is a huge percentage of sales that get returned every year, and therefore it is quite important to contemplate the management of product return.

How to manage product return?

The online returns management is considered to be a hectic task but it is true that the way you deal with all the process of returning the product affects your brand, if done in a positive way, it can also end up by providing your brand an additional competitive advantage.

But the interesting part is, by following a few steps you can manage your product return in an optimum way.

So here we go!

  • Research and analyze: The first part of management involves understanding the reason of return, because management is always about involving a process in such a way that we receive the maximum output.
  • So if you are an online retailer, make a habit of analyzing the product that has maximum return, with time invested in understanding and analyzing the reason of return, you can save your time and money in shipping and return of that product.
  • product with the order before shipping, a look in the product can save your efforts. This will help you to diminish the controllable returns like different sizes, colors, or if the product is damaged.
  • Recheck: Another remark is to recheck the Handle uncontrolled returns: It is true, that we can only control things that are in our hands.

So what about, uncontrollable returns?

Since the product has already reached your buyer and buyer wants to return it, so there is no way you can do anything but work on the return process.

And this is where return management comes to the picture.

This is the time to play smart, the time to create an image, and time for you to use it as a competitive advantage and save the financial impact on your business.

What financial impact does Product returns have on business?

There was a time when free delivery and return was a nice and additional offer to have for customers, but nowadays it is something that is expected by all the buyers.

A study reflected that out of all online retailers 57% of retailers said return management has a high impact in dealing with their day to day business.

33% revealed that they offer free return services but charge to delivery, and so try to offset the cost, however, 20% of online retailers prefer increasing the price of their product to cover these expenses.

The additional expenses that occur due to an order return are the cost of processing the return that includes the cost of resources, staff, shipment etc.

Along with that, there is always a risk that a returned product will not be resold easily leading to high impact in finance.

Return management for competitive advancement

As we have already discussed, a return management done in the right way can promise a competitive advancement for your brand.

So what are you waiting for!

Learn about the ways and make it a competitive advancement now, allow your business to grow with these simple hacks.

  • Easy return policies: Never ever miss that Customers satisfaction is most important”. And one way to win the heart of your customers is to provide them easy and convenient return policies.

For this, the best way is to add a direct link for return and refund in your website and application, also add the option for returning the product.
In this way, the customers can easily reach you without facing any hassles in the process.

To make it more feasible for you and customers, highlight the policies of return in your website and application like days valid for return.

Also make the acceptance policies clear along with the name of products for which you do not accept return, and don’t forget to add the criteria to credit refund.

  • Provide service: Always try providing the best services to your customers, especially the service related to pick up of product and refund must be “on-time”.
  • Acknowledge return: So now, since you got the product back. Is the return process complete now?

The answer is “NO”. Once you receive the product acknowledge the return reason and try working on it. You can even try interacting with your customers to understand their needs and provide them the best.

This will surely enhance your reputation in the market.

  • Attract customers by providing weekends return: Do not restrict your customers only to weekdays.

Let’s give them a little more!

You can provide them with a weekend return too, this will make the return process convenient for them.

  • Follow product return process: To channelize the management in the right path you can simply make a thumb rule to follow a product return process and stick to its management.

The process starts as soon as you receive the product back from the customer, now you have to sort the product into categories and analyze the reason for return.

Once done all you need to do is to make a decision to rather put the product back into store or back to stock.

The entire process demands high management and tracking of products that you need to look upon.

And by following these simple tips you can use return of product in creating competitive advancement, and there are many big companies following different return methods for the return management.

What successful companies do ?

Every company today has their own strategy to deal with online returns , here are some of them and their way to do so.

  • Myntra: A fashion shopping e-Commerce platform, stands number as they are found to receive the least number of returns every year, Myntra believes in checking the product before they ship.

Their policies say that any customer can return an order within the time period of 30 days, with free delivery and return policy, however the product must not have the tag removed or used by the user.

  • Amazon: One of the largest E-commerce platforms provides opportunities to customers to file a return within 30 days of purchase and take 2 days business days to refund the amount of buyers.
  • Exclusivelane: A home decor and craft-based E-commerce site has something different with their return policy, they offer to send the address and details of the retail seller along with the product and along with the product put a slip stating “in case of any issue or query contact”.

In this way the buyer directly contacts the retail seller and proceeds the return process accordingly.

  • Phuljhadi: A jewelry based E-commerce platform, it only offers a return if the product is damaged and is informed to the company within 24 hours of delivery. And the company will process the return in 48 business hours.

Something for you

This is for all the retailers out there planning to build their return policies different from others, always give preference to your customers convenience. Because this could only bring a customers’ purchase back to you all over again.

Also the return management requires high tracking of product and this could be a real problem, being an online retailer. For the process, you can use some ESP software that can keep the management process simple for you.

You could come up with some interesting policies that are product friendly, i.e. making policies as per your products and use it as a strategy to be different.

As customers appreciate and count your efforts in making their shopping experience wonderful, so invest your time in making easily understandable policies for your customers, never confuse your customers as they will always like it simple!

Remember, the most important work to do after return is management.

Yes, I agree, that is the most confusing and creates hassles in day to day business.

But for you we made it simple, now eVanik is here to manage all your returns systematically and provide you a clear vision of return.

With eVanik you can easily track your return at once, we also provide you a platform you claim to return and manage them. All your problems related to returns and be solved at one go.

We will help you to keep a detailed outline of returns so that you can work on your product accordingly. Try understanding the reason for returning and don’t miss to work on it.

Let’s work together to achieve this milestone!

Conclusion

Return management is the need of the hour today and if you are an online retailer the task is even hard for you, but a few steps towards the right direction can change the entire story.

You will not only get your customers attracted but can also boost your business by gaining a competitive edge.

However, the process needs high attention and tracking but it will eventually help you to understand the mindset of your buyers and you can act accordingly.

So here is a take away for you, if you are a online retailer:

“Understand and invest your time in creating the right return policy, and once done that we can promise to manage them for you” – eVanik

Precautions that e-commerce sellers should take during the coronavirus (covid19) pandemic

Precautions that e-commerce sellers should take during the coronavirus (covid19) pandemic

The Novel Coronavirus (nCoV19) outbreak has affected over 75% of the countries in the world since its outbreak in December 2019. The SARS-CoV-2 spreads mostly from person to person through close contact or from droplets that are scattered when a person with the virus sneezes or coughs. This means that the novel coronavirus is highly contagious, which means it spreads easily from person to person. The average incubation period of the virus seems to be around 5 days.

Millions of online shipments exchange hands every day. Right from the supplier to the warehouse staff to the courier delivery boys and finally to the end shopper. This gets multiplied as over 20% of online shipments get returned to the seller causing a much higher threat.

How can Coronavirus COVID19 affect the business and health of E-Commerce Sellers and their employees?

Studies show that its cousin viruses, SARS and MERS, live for a few hours on the surface of an object. They are spread most often by respiratory droplets from one person to another. Besides, no medicine or vaccination has been developed till date to fight this pandemic. The earliest probability of getting one as per various research organizations and scientists is one year from now.

The logistics providers have been experiencing a surge in orders from shoppers who are ordering online, especially after delivery commitments like “Same Day/Next Day” delivery promises from online retailers like Amazon and others. This leaves a certain possibility of the packets being a carrier of the virus from the origin to the shopper. And that’s quite a risk. 

To make matters worse, in the case of buyer returns, the packets come back from thousands of shoppers back to the seller through multiple delivery boys throughout the day, every day.

One theory is that after the outbreak of the pandemic, more people will stay indoor and order online instead of exposing themselves by going out and shopping in physical stores. While this may sound to be a boom for eCommerce sellers, the worry is far bigger.

Ecommerce sellers need to deal throughout the day with warehouse staff and courier staff to ensure timely delivery of orders to buyers.

Now, this poses a serious 2-way threat to eCommerce Sellers. Some of the situations and scenarios which are more akin to the business of eCommerce sellers and safe practices that one should follow are:

PICKING & PACKING
  • Definition – Order picking is the process of finding and extracting products from a warehouse to fulfill customer orders.
  • Conventional Practice – On receiving orders, picklists get generated and given to pickers to bring the items from different locations (Racks, Shelves, Bins, etc) of the warehouse to the packing area. Packers would then put the products in various packets/boxes, affix the shipping label, use adhesives and tapes and move to the dispatch area.
  • Hazard Threats
    • One Carrier (Picker) may transmit droplets to locations (Racks, Shelves, etc) from where it could transmit to another carrier in case he goes to the same location.
    • The coronavirus appears able to linger on plastic and steel surfaces for two to three days.
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Clean, sanitize and disinfect all high-touch surfaces and warehouse locations (tables, racks, shelves, bins, light switches, barcode scanners, desks, etc.) 2-3 times a day. Cleaning does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection.
    • Allow 1 person at a time to go to the warehouse location for picking and once he has picked the items, he should wash hands and/or apply sanitizer every time after the picking.
    • Ensure people wear safety mask especially those who are commuting through public transport. An added precaution would be that pickers wear disposable safety gloves and discard them properly at the end of every day.
DISPATCH
  • Definition – Dispatch is the activity performed when the goods have to be delivered to the customer(s) or handed over to the courier
  • Conventional Practice – Once all packed items are kept in the dispatch area, they get physically handed over to various courier/delivery boys

Picklist for safety precautions for e-commerce sellers
  • Hazard Threats
    • The delivery boys from the courier company may be potential carriers of the virus.
    • In case any employee is infected, the virus could get transmitted through the surface of the packages.
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Keep courier wise packets in a separate area with a large display tag containing the dispatch information (Manifest IDs, no. of packets, courier name, etc.) so that the person coming to pick up the shipments can identify his consignments.
    • Keep a drop-box where the receiving person can leave the signed acknowledgments of the picked-up consignment receipts.
    • Wear masks when engaging with the external courier/delivery boys who have come to pick up the consignments.
    • Clean, sanitize and disinfect the dispatch area at the end of every day once all the consignments have been picked up.
RECEIVING RETURNS OR PURCHASED ITEMS
  • Definition – Inwarding is the process of physically receiving the products into the warehouse either from a supplier or through a customer/courier returns and doing a putaway into the warehouse locations.
  • Conventional Practice – Returns and purchased items are physically received and inward almost immediately when they land in the warehouse.
  • Hazard Threats
    • Returned packets may be a carrier of the virus through the person who has delivered them
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Keep a distinct covered area in the warehouse where the senders can keep the stock and a drop-box where they can leave the documents. Ask for suppliers to send a copy of the documents electronically to verify and respond with confirmation electronically. Mention the reason for doing this in the electronic email.
    • Disinfect all returns received
    • Wash hands every time after receiving returns and doing the putaway.
    • Since the virus lingers just for a few hours on the surface, it is advisable to make physical contact with the packets after 3-4 hours of their landing in the warehouse.

The safety of our business is in our hands. These small and simple steps will help us combat coronavirus. These will protect our business and the health and well-being of our employees.

Best accounting software for e-commerce sellers in india

Best accounting software for e-commerce sellers in india

Finding out the most appropriate accounting software for your online business on marketplaces could be a really difficult task to choose from.

When you are considering to buy accounting software for your eCommerce business and especially if you are selling through marketplace platforms such as Amazon, Flipkart, PayTM, etc, it’s important to consider several factors. Moreover, if you buy the wrong one, it wouldn’t be easy to make a switch to another one in the middle of the year.

Here’s what all you must consider before you go ahead and buy your accounting ERP

Integration
  1. Your accounting software should be able to automatically integrate with marketplaces and fetch all data points like sales orders, returns, payments, commissions & marketplace fee and TCS
  2. These integrations should be real-time primarily because marketplace transactions are dynamic in nature. If you are thinking of downloading files from your seller accounts and then uploading it back to your accounting software, it may not be a good idea, simply because what you have downloaded today may get updated or modified by the marketplace tomorrow. This will become an infuriating struggle to identify the changes and re-updating your accounts
  3. Most accounting software does not have a direct integration with eCommerce marketplace channels. Therefore, it’s important to look for a middle layer solution that talks with your marketplaces and your accounting software simultaneously and seamlessly. eVanik OneWorld Suite is one such option that has direct integration with all major eCommerce channels and major accounting ERP providers.
Features & Functionalities
  1. The nature of accounting transactions in the eCommerce marketplace business vs. a regular trading business is largely different. The following table illustrates some of the key differences between both.
Nature of Transaction Ecommerce Marketplace Offline / Trading Business
Sales Orders & Fulfilment Multiple Statuses (Changing dynamically)
Party ledger of Marketplace instead of the end customer
Invoicing done by Marketplace (FBA Model)
Simple direct invoicing to end customers.
Payments Received in bulk for multiple orders/invoices after multiple deductions.
Payments received against one bank account or GSTIN location even if transactions have happened in multiple locations
Direct full payment against an invoice from the end customer.
Commissions / Fee Multiple charges linked against order/product/fulfillment model etc
Charges are dynamic and ever-changing
Charges to be adjusted at every order-level / item-level and warehouse-level
Mostly unlinked to sales invoice with exceptions like Shipping Fee
Sales Returns Returns initiated by the marketplace vs. returns received by the seller – when should it be recorded
Recording accounting vouchers for replacement orders
Simple Return Voucher or Credit Note
Refunds & Reimbursements Claims vs settled reimbursements
Refunded orders but not settled to seller
No impact
Inventory Stock transfer from the main warehouse to channel warehouse
Recalls from channel warehouse to the main warehouse
Inter warehouse movement done directly by marketplace channel
Damaged and unsellable stocks accounting treatment
No impact
TCS TCS is implemented only for marketplace eCommerce business
Accounting entries of TCS
TCS on return orders
Reconciling TCS with GSTIN portal
No TCS impact
  • accounting software may not have such large data handling capability. This may cause a threat of loss of valuable data, incorrect reports and delay in filing your returns.
  • Reporting your online business comprehensively in the way you would like to see it.
  • Ease of Use / Accessibility 
    1. Simplicity is the key to good accounting software. Ensure that you take a detailed product demo and list down all your queries at the time of the demo. 
    2. Most software will provide you a limited free trial period. Make maximum use of this trial with your actual data and see if this is working for you or not.
  • Cost
    1. Acquisition cost – Initial cost and annual maintenance / AMC charges
    2. Operational cost – Server cost
    3. Support cost 
  • Support and Implementation
    1. While most accounting software comes with standard support channels, it’s important to scope out your implementation requirements and support requirements with definitive timelines.
    2. Check the ratings and reviews to see how the software company fares on customer support and implementation.
    3. Customization will be required especially when you are into this complex business of eCommerce marketplaces. 
Tally .ERP 9

Tally .ERP9 is undoubtedly the leader in Accounting software in India. 

It is a windows-based enterprise resource planning software. The software handles accounting, inventory management, order management, tax management, payroll, banking and many such requirements of the business. It supports all day-to-day processes from recording invoices to generating various MIS reports.

Tally boasts of 6 million overall customer base out of which 2 million are with an official Tally license. 

Tally does not have any direct integration with any eCommerce companies in India and hence the commonly used workaround is the import and export of spreadsheets which may not be a good practice.

eVanik OWS is the only tool that has an automated chrome extension based integration with Tally ERP9. This means that there is no need for you to manually upload or download vouchers. No 3rd party module (TDL) needs to be installed into your Tally license. All ledgers, SKUs get mapped or created automatically through eVanik. And the GST reports generated on your Tally will be 100% accurate and error-free.

The biggest limitations of using Tally are:

  1. Limitation on data. Experience says that after posting 50-70k vouchers, the software tends to slow down. Generating GST and other reports take a long time.
  2. Tally is a single company / single branch software. Branch accounting is not available
  3. Its an offline and desktop-based software and cannot be accessed from a remote location
  4. The multi-user version of Tally can run only if all the users are on the same network.
QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online provides direct integration with very limited marketplace channels. In the Indian eCommerce context, this is even more restricted. However, if you have the technical expertise, you can do an API integration of a few of your marketplaces (that provide API) directly with QuickBooks Online.

QuickBooks offers on-premises accounting applications and cloud-based versions with features like expense tracking, tracking bills and due dates, and reporting

Currently priced at Rs. 4,800/- per year, QuickBooks comes with a 30-Day Free Trial. The “Simple” edition of QuickBooks Online limits to 1 Billable User, 250 Charts of Accounts, lack of custom reports and no multiple branch accounting options.

Alignbooks

Alignbooks leads the house when it comes to eCommerce accounting in India. Alignbooks is a Delhi based company focused on SMBs. Alignbooks recorded 1000 new customers within the first year of its launch.

The biggest advantage of this software is that it is completely automated and integrated with eVanik OneWorld Suite. Server-based APIs between Alignbooks and eVanik ensure real-time and automated transaction posting without any manual intervention. Reports are highly customized and the support is available 24×7 from the company. It’s Multi all the way: Multi-User, Multi-Company, Multi-Location, Multi-Branch and unlimited transactions.

Zoho Books

Zoho Books is one of the most sought after cloud-based accounting software in India and now globally. Zoho Books provides end to end accounting and also has a very simple and useful mobile application in Android and iOS.

  • The pricing of Zoho Books is very attractive for small businesses The standard edition comes at just Rs. 2,499/- per year with a restriction of 5,000 invoices annually and the premium edition comes at Rs. 19,999/- per year with 25,000 invoices. The pricing steeps up with more number of invoices.

    Ecommerce integrations are limited to sales orders and returns. Payments from marketplaces can be managed through their bank feed integrations. Cons – Single Branch, restriction on the number of transactions, limited users, etc.

NetSuite
  • NetSuite is one of the leading solution providers of cloud-based business management software. NetSuite helps companies manage core business processes with a single, fully integrated system covering ERP/financials, CRM, eCommerce, inventory and more. NetSuite is focused on strong compliance management and designed for large enterprises. If you have a global and large enterprise business with multiple verticals, NetSuite is worth checking out.
  • Pricing of NetSuite may be one major constraint if your business is into early or growth stages. NetSuite’s cost depends on several factors including the selected product configuration, add-on modules required, total user count and contract duration. NetSuite’s base license pricing begins at $999 per month with general user access listed at $99 per month.

NetSuite comes with a basic integration with eVanik OneWorld Suite.

Xero

Xero is another popular online accounting software. Right from the Xero login page, the overall experience of the web and mobile version is fantastic.

Xero comes with integration with over 800 third party apps and a very hands-on expense management module. Xero boasts of over 2 million subscribers. The UI of Xero is one of the most beautiful in this segment.

Xero also claims to provide a reconciliation of Amazon FBA transactions and the Amazon Seller Central can get integrated with Xero. Besides Amazon, integrations with Alibaba, Etsy, and eBay are also available.