Omnichannel Warehousing: Is it Right for You?
Find Out if Omnichannel Warehousing Can Help Your Logistics Company
The traditional warehousing model that’s been successful for decades typically uses one warehouse per channel. This means you’ll have one warehouse for e-commerce inventory and another (or several others) for brick-and-mortar locations. Nowadays, however, companies need to keep up with 1- or 2-day delivery times offered by big players such as Amazon. That’s why so many companies are shifting away from the traditional warehousing model and embracing omnichannel warehousing.
What is Omnichannel Warehousing?
Omnichannel warehousing is a distribution strategy where, instead of running one warehouse per channel, the channels merge together to give consumers a seamless end-to-end experience from anywhere. This strategy is becoming more prevalent due to the explosion in online shopping and the increasing popularity of mobile devices. Consumers can now easily educate themselves before making a purchase to ensure product or service satisfaction.
What’s Needed to Transition to Omnichannel Warehousing?
Transitioning to omnichannel warehousing isn’t difficult, but you certainly should take the time to do it right. Distribution and fulfillment centers must optimize their network in a few key areas to ensure a smooth transition to omnichannel warehousing and guarantee a positive experience for consumers. These areas include, but are not limited to:
- In-store customer pick-ups
- Inventory visibility
- Network speed and agility
- Order capture across all channels
In addition, there are tools and softwares you may want to put in place when making the switch to omnichannel. Many companies are incorporating warehouse management systems (WMS), order management systems (OMS), cartonization software, and shipping rate shopping tools in their omnichannel strategy. If your organization has a strong workflow at its foundation, then these tools can help make any facility omnichannel ready.
What are the Advantages of an Omnichannel Warehouse?
- Reduced delivery times: The main advantage of running an omnichannel warehouse is in its ability to reduce delivery times to customers and retail outlets. Omnichannel means you’re delivering from the location that’s closest to the customer so they get their order faster. And if you have a WMS that’s configured for an omnichannel approach in place, stock can be compiled from several warehouses at once and delivered together within the same delivery window.
- Increased sales: An omnichannel approach is also a customer-centric approach. When customers are happy with not only the product they bought, but also the purchasing experience you’ve provided, they’re more likely to become repeat customers. You’re also giving them as many outlets as possible to make purchases, so they’re likely to buy more.
- More consistent price points: Warehouse inventory often has to be severely discounted to make way for new styles or updated technology. But with an omnichannel model, you may sell more products without necessarily having to slash prices. Someone somewhere wants the item and is willing to pay for it. Plus, fulfilling from stores lets retailers get more inventory into the hands of customers.
- Strong competitive advantage: Companies that prioritize creating an omnichannel experience gain a significant advantage over competitors that are still following a more traditional strategy. If you’re not yet pursing an omnichannel warehousing strategy, then act now to simplify your supply chain and create a more cohesive, transparent purchasing experience for your customers.
Contact Taylored Fulfillment Services to start a conversation about your warehouse strategy. We’re a fully integrated third-party logistics provider specializing in wholesale, retail, and direct-to-consumer unit fulfillment. Established in 1992 and headquartered in Iselin, New Jersey, we operate 1.5 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space strategically located near the nation’s busiest ports, including Los Angeles, Long Beach, and New York.