When you are running a business that is retail based, you have quite a few things that you need to keep your eye on. One of the more important aspects of your business that requires you to have a foolproof process in place is that of the manner in which you package and ship your products to your customers.
Your shipping needs are going to be specific to your company and the types of products that you sell. For instance, the process of shipping heavy machinery to other states throughout the country is going to be very different from that of shipping clothing to local vendors. However, regardless of your product and the scope of your business, shipping is something that needs to be done right the first time.
Failure to implement safe and effective shipping processes can result in lost inventory, dissatisfied customers, and an overall dip in business. Here are a few things that you should consider doing in order to improve the manner in which your business ships its goods.
Use the Right Technology
There was once a time when shipping your products was more or less a leap of faith. You would place your sold items in the hands of a delivery driver or mail carrier and hope that everything arrived where it should in a reasonable amount of time. However, in the age of technology, the ability to track your deliveries from the moment you package them to the second they arrive at their destination has never been simpler.
By implementing technology every step of the way throughout your delivery process, you can ensure that all of your items arrive at the right place and at the right time. Moreover, if your shipping process involves a fleet of your own, you can use technology to do everything from locate a truck via GPS to tracking spending in real-time via Comdata. Essentially, if you aren’t using the right technology, then your shipping process could be better.
Keep Things as Simple as Possible
Although you want to utilize technology to your greatest advantage when it comes to your shipping processes, you don’t want to overcomplicate things by using certain technology for the sake of it. You should do a detailed evaluation of your current shipping process and determine what areas could stand to benefit the most from technology. Otherwise, you should look to keep things as simplified as possible.
Bear in mind that shipping your products involves many moving parts. By keeping things simple, you reduce the risk that one of those parts will malfunction. Things like documentation should be kept to a minimum, in a realistic manner of course. Keep your channels of distribution as streamlined as possible as well so that you can avoid inefficiencies in the shipping process.
Ultimately, your purpose in simplifying your shipping process should be to reduce your margin for error. Logistics can be a delicate process, but it can be made much easier by aiming to keep things simple.