In eCommerce, fulfilment involves all the processes that go into the preparation and delivery of an order. It is an essential part of an eCommerce business and plays a big role in determining the success of one.
There are six stages to the eCommerce fulfilment process
- Warehousing - This stage of the fulfilment process involves the proper storage of your products. Ideally, your stock should be organized and stored in a way that allows for easy accessibility. Keeping everything in a single warehouse helps to achieve this.
- Inventory Management - This involves keeping a detailed record relating to the number and details of the products stored in the warehouse. This information is also used for forecasting and assessing the capacity of the business to meet consumer demands.
- Order Management - Order management is the process of handling all the orders that are placed by customers through the website, and making sure that all orders are processed and none are missed. Order management and inventory management go hand in hand as they both have an impact on each other.
- Packaging - This involves picking and packaging the products for an order. It is imperative that the quantity and type of product that is chosen is done exactly to order and the packaging provides enough protection and maintains the quality of the product during the shipping process.
- Shipping - This is a crucial step in the fulfilment process as it involves organizing not only taking care of the logistics and shipping process but also making sure that the product is picked up after it is shipped and delivered on time and safely to the customer.
- Managing Returns - The fulfilment process also involves carrying out any returns that are initiated by customers. Depending on the company's policy it may involve sending a delivery person to pick up the product from the customer.
There are three types of fulfilment models - In-house order fulfilment, third-party fulfilment, and dropshipping.