If you ship to consumers, you'll need a good order fulfillment software package so you can track orders and inventory.
- Review the features of each order fulfillment software program before purchasing.
- Confirm that the price fits in with your budget and it includes the function you need to eliminate manual tasks.
- Automation, improved customer service, and reduced human error are just a few of the benefits a company experiences by implementing order fulfillment software programs.
What is order fulfillment software?
Order fulfillment is one of the top software programs needed by companies to manage their sales. An order fulfillment software program automates key functions for a business including warehouse management and inventory tracking.
There are several types of software programs for order fulfillment. Providers may offer general software programs with functions that could be used universally. Specialized product providers may want to choose order fulfillment software geared toward their industry. As an example, Razor ERP has an order fulfillment software program specifically for auto parts providers.
Order fulfillment software automates the time-consuming tasks of warehouse and inventory management, order picking and processing, and shipping and tracking. People make mistakes, and while no software is perfect, it is generally more accurate than manual processes.
This isn't a "nice-to-have" option and the effectiveness of your order processing system can literally make or break your business.
Your order fulfillment software should offer systems that easily integrate with your existing information technology (IT) infrastructure to provide seamless and secure, easy-to-access, detailed, real-time, on-demand reporting on where and how orders are processed throughout the supply chain.
What are the benefits of order fulfillment software?
The main benefit of order fulfillment software is to improve your customer service. Properly managing your company stores and warehouses allow your customers to get what they need in a timely fashion. Since order fulfillment software tracks customer purchases and accounts, your customer service agents are better equipped to field calls.
Another benefit of order fulfillment software is that processing can be done anywhere. If you have previously only served a regional market, the software gives you the opportunity to expand to new markets. Customers can place orders online with processing and shipping functions automated.
Keeping all data in a centralized location is another benefit of an order fulfillment software program. All personnel will be able to access the data they need to handle inventory and warehouse duties. Sharing information in a digital format reduces the chance of error when processing new orders.
According to SkuNexus, companies need to confirm that the order fulfillment software provides automation. Automation streamlines order fulfillment processes without the need for manual interventions. Automation saves a company money and time while reducing human error.
Lastly, order fulfillment software is surprisingly low-cost. Since you won't need to spend the time manually tracking orders and inventory, overhead costs are drastically cut for your organization. You can free up employees for other tasks without worrying about them manually keeping track of processed orders.
Order fulfillment software capabilities
Every vendor has its own twist about why its software is better than anyone else's. You want to be able to:
- Create new orders
- View, search, and edit existing orders
- View inventory
- Forecast inventory levels
- Receive inventory alerts (e.g., low stock levels, out-of-stock notifications)
- Check and verify returns
- Integrate with your Web-based shopping cart or other customer ordering system
- Manually enter orders as needed
- View invoices
- Run reports
- Receive email alerts on order status
Popular order fulfillment software apps
Here are five of the top order fulfillment software packages and some key features:
- Real-time order entry/fulfillment
- Google apps integration
- Customer relationship management (CRM) system
- Integrates with QuickBooks platform
- Wireless barcoding system for warehouse inventory
- UPS/FedEx integration
- Credit card and shopping cart integration
- Free trial
- Real-time updates
- Modular, easily customizable
- Customer loyalty program
- Digital distribution
- QuickBooks integration
- Real-time order entry/management
- Back-order management
- Free trial
- Up to 10 users/inventory locations
- CRM system
- Free trial
This list is by no means exhaustive. There is no one-size-fits-all package (although vendors typically offer customization to varying degrees). Your individual needs will largely dictate which order fulfillment software is best for you.
It almost goes without saying that price is a big consideration. Another is your existing IT infrastructure –you want something that is going to integrate seamlessly with your existing systems. Another thing to think about is modularity – i.e., how easily you can add capabilities as your business expands.