In the aftermath of the chaotic holiday shopping season, you sometimes wonder how it all worked out. Market demand shifts so rapidly, and sometimes unexpectedly, you wonder how were you able to make the sales you did.
After every holiday season, you probably realize you did (admittedly) have some areas where you missed opportunities for additional sales. It happens. No company actually does the holiday season perfectly, and that even includes industry giants like Amazon.
How could you improve this holiday season, or even begin strategizing for the next? These ideas may help your supply chain efficiency:
Join A B2B E-Procurement Network
With a B2B e-procurement network, you understand what’s going on with your suppliers’ suppliers. Cloud-based technology means you get real-time updates on the status of your supply chain from your suppliers. Instead of passively reacting to changes in supply, you proactively address them and avoid costly supply shortage blunders.
Make Sure Marketing and Your Supply Team Are On the Same Page
Ever had a smash-hit marketing promotion, only to realize you didn’t have the necessary product available to fulfill demand? It happens. And, much of the time it happens simply because marketing and your supply team aren’t in close communication, and don’t understand what the other is doing.
So, make sure they work closely together. If it requires a meeting headed by someone with greater authority than both, then make it happen. It’s simply too large of an opportunity to overlook during the holiday sales season.
Consider Re-Evaluating Your Distribution Center Network
You won’t be able to complete this one during the current holiday season. However, it is a problem that even the nation’s leading retailers face. They simply don’t have their distribution center network optimized for fulfilling online orders. Even in 2017, it’s still set up for in-store sales by most retailers.
Some experts believe you can still greatly improve your supply chain efficiency with only minor changes to your distribution center network.
Per usual, Amazon has this model finely honed and optimized (though not perfected). Their fulfillment center locations can all be found online so you can study and learn why they might have their network setup as they do.
Can you improve your supply chain’s efficiency? You sure can. Every business has room for at least some improvement. And when you get that additional efficiency, you’ll notice fewer markdowns and more sales.