As is the norm in managing any business or services in any field, there must be a clear plan and a specific nature of work that we follow, especially when talking about logistics and its management. If you are one of those who work in this field and occupy a position in the management of logistics services, especially in online stores, then this matter is important to you; Therefore, we have prepared for you a comprehensive guide on how to manage these services and the requirements for success in them.
What are the logistics? And what are its types?
Logistics is a term that refers to the science of managing various resources, goods, products and services, and controlling their flow and storage from the area of production to the area of consumption. However, the term logistics is often used to describe the transportation and delivery services for these products.
Regardless of what they are, whether they are tangible products or other services, the most prominent of which is what is provided electronically and via the Internet, as the logistics in online stores may differ in some of its details, but it goes on the same principle, and when talking about the types of logistics services, there are three main types of them that play An important role in the way goods and services arrive from the producer to the customer:
1. Transportation and shipping services
One of the most important services provided in the field of logistics operations due to the great demand for it, especially from the owners of large companies and establishments. Including packaging, packaging and other supplementary matters.
The importance of conducting these services is that the company ensures that the product reaches the customer on time while maintaining quality, especially in online stores; Because this will give the customer more confidence and loyalty in the store, and will also give the logistics company the confidence of the store owners; Therefore, there is a keenness to deal with a reliable logistics company that takes into account the needs of the customer.
2. Storage/Warehouse Services
Among the most prominent logistics services; Storage services in the form of reserved storage spaces, and many customers prefer that a logistics company receive tasks on their behalf, and we need such logistical operations when importing or importing goods and parcels, so space is reserved for the logistics company to store these goods in it until they are received by their owners, and it provides a lot of money on customers and shop owners; Because it obviates the rental and reservation of an entire warehouse for them.
Despite all these advantages; you may encounter some limitations regarding the time period for booking and the ease of access for your goods, which mainly depends on the logistics company itself.
3. Express shipping services
These services are indispensable, especially if we are talking about an online store. Certainly, some customers in the store will need to have their goods delivered by express mail, and here lies the importance, as the date you set for the arrival of the mail is very important, and therefore it should not be delayed in order to preserve the reputation of the store, and this It is up to us to choose efficient logistics sources.
In addition to what we mentioned, other services such as: customs clearance services, conducting transactions, logistical support and delivery to customers if the nature of the work requires that.
What is logistics management?
It is simply the process of comprehensive management of the logistics itself, and it takes place in several scenarios and in several stages until ensuring that the service reaches the customer as required, and the logistics manager is primarily responsible for managing these services and the details related to them. In e-commerce, the logistics operations may be wholly or partly managed by the store; But often a logistics company is assigned the task.
What are the types of logistics management?
Management operations vary in terms of their tasks and objectives, and may extend to expand several types depending on the field in which logistics operations are applied, and the most prominent management operations are reflected in the following:
Inventory and supply management
Certainly, for any merchandise store, there is a store somewhere, whether the merchandise is made and stored by the store or made by external companies and stored in warehouses that do not belong to the store. Whatever the case, there must be the management of this inventory and continuous tracking operations for it in addition to the supply of goods, and Administrative operations of accounting and goods protection procedures.
Examination and inspection
The importance of the operations of the Inspection and Inspection Department lies in revealing the accuracy and quality of the products and taking care of their proper storage, and this type of management avoids the material losses that the store may be exposed to due to the damage to the products, and the word inspection extends its impact to other non-physical processes such as: Follow-up Orders, exports and imports, they are also an equally important part.
Transportation and Distribution Department
Transportation and distribution management is represented in the series of actions taken to transport products from warehouses and then distribute them to customers based on the details of incoming orders. Any mistake in this management process will cost the store a lot of financial loss and loss of customers and their trust in the store, and thus the store’s collapse in the long run.
As an online store owner, how do you manage your logistics services optimally?
Let's be frank, the management process is not an easy one, and at the same time, it will not be complicated if you follow the correct and sound foundations of the management process. Either the store takes over this task or assigns it to specialists, and there are a series of steps that guide you on the right path, from the manufacture of the product to its arrival to the customer's hand safely:
Store inventory management
As we mentioned in the previous point, we emphasize the importance and necessity of this type of management for your store, as it allows you to know what products you have available. Items to focus on, and detection of errors.
Transportation and Shipping Department
You must employ the most skilled cadres working in this field; Because it will be based on an important process that leads to delivering the product to its final destination and delivering it to the customer, no matter how harsh the conditions are for the team, where customer satisfaction is the priority.
Order Fulfillment Management
Here, the most important stages of logistic management are in business, receiving customer requests and listing all orders; To move it to the transportation and delivery department, because when you meet the desires and needs of customers, you ensure that they are satisfied and return to buy again and perhaps suggest the store to their list of contacts which will be a great success for the store.
It is normal for customers to return requests for any reason, either because the product they received is damaged or not intended, or the customer decided to cancel the purchase, whatever the reasons. Here, the store must manage these processes in accordance with its policy, and these management processes are the opposite of distribution services where the product is fetched from the customer and returned to the warehouses.
Surveying customer opinions and taking recommendations
Surveying customer opinions is a step no less important than its predecessors, as it contributes to developing the store's business, increasing efficiency and bringing improvements by asking customers and inquiring about their experience with the store, so the strengths and weaknesses are identified and then addressed.
How does logistics affect and what role does it play in the production process and customer service?
Logistics operations greatly affect the field of business and online stores, and mainly the two sides of the business process; The customer and the store owner, because this will reflect positively or negatively on both, as there is the so-called production logistics related to the supply of raw materials to the factory and then the distribution of the final product after manufacturing and the better the logistics is, that means customer satisfaction. Earlier, we talked about the types of customers and how to deal with them, and ways to build a customer service culture.
The main challenges of logistics
In every work, challenges arise, and in the field of logistics, these challenges may be multiplied. Things are manifold and interrelated to each other. If they fail at a certain stage, this means that the rest of the stages are affected. The most prominent of these challenges are:
Errors in inventory management and supply chain
One of the most dangerous issues facing the workflow is that a mistake in the first stages will hinder the work of all the stages based on it, such as transferring, distributing, managing orders, etc., and these problems must be avoided as much as possible.
E-commerce is fraught with many obstacles. The incoming product to the store may be counterfeit, or there are counterfeit products in the market that impersonate your original product, in each of which there is a great challenge that must be faced.
Same day delivery
There are many customers who request to receive their orders quickly, and as long as this service is provided, the product must be delivered to them quickly, and this is due to the basis of the management processes that we discussed.
Delay in processing orders
It is also a challenge related to the order management process, as employers have to process incoming orders before they can be dispatched, and this process requires some time and should not take more than the time specified for it; Because any delay will affect the subsequent processes of packing and delivery, and the solution lies in the presence of an efficient team worthy of reliance on.
The effect of the economy
Regional conditions play an important role in sales, as rises in manufacturing and raw materials prices, consumer price increases, and tax duties have a negative impact on the number of orders, sales and shipments.
Top Logistics Solutions
There must be solutions to meet the previous challenges and to maintain the proper functioning of the business process without harming it, and the solutions ensure the existence of supply chain management from warehouses to the customer, and we list below a group of the most prominent of these solutions that will meet these challenges:
Some may consider digital development one of the challenges facing e-commerce due to the risk and risk of being left behind and the inability to provide the latest technologies, but on the other hand, it seems to be one of the most prominent solutions because of its great benefit to the store, reducing costs and providing a better service. For example, in robotic warehouses that eliminate labour costs, stores need to reduce costs; To get a bigger net profit.
Supply and supply chains are the most prominent areas of application of sustainability in logistics services, by finding ways to reuse resources in secondary operations and reduce the cost of consumption, and thus higher competitiveness in the market, in addition to reducing the environmental impact of delivering goods to large numbers of customers through the selection of means of delivery environmentally friendly.
Adopt a transparent policy
A transparent policy and laws must be adopted with customers, from shipping and delivery details and description of products to make the customer sufficiently familiar with them, and it is preferable to have a notification service that provides them with the latest information, thus achieving better customer service.
Improve the supply chain workflow
In order to get accuracy in the work, it is necessary to work on improving supply chains and supply chains; To ensure shipments are tracked and on their specific geographic and time path, and to avoid problems, especially in emergency situations; By taking quick action to prevent it from happening.
What is the importance of managing logistics services for e-store owners?
It is known that the management process is important in any field and the basis for the success of any business, and in the world of online stores business is growing very quickly, and this growth is accompanied by an increasing need for additional services, and in detail we can talk about the following most prominent objectives of the management of logistics services:
1. Increase efficiency and improve productivity
Taking into account all the details throughout the purchase process to delivery, and logistical support is the one who does this task by securing all logistical processes, which improves the production process.
2. Avoid unexpected events
These events are usually frequent, as in the middle of the workflow you have an obstacle that will disturb the normal course of the process, and they are many and varied, for example - but not limited to - the products not reaching their destination.
Having good logistic services saves a lot of expenses, especially in the event of a lack of experience with the concerned authority, and assigning all tasks to a competent authority prevents problems that would bring additional costs such as: The arrival of the product is damaged to the customer, which will cost the price of the product in addition to the costs of return.
On time delivery
It is also challenging but important in meeting the customer's needs and reflecting an excellent mental image of the store and its service to its customers.
Meet the needs of customers and achieve their satisfaction
Satisfying customers' desires and achieving their satisfaction is achieved through administrative matters and previous goals. This desire is achieved, and perhaps this importance overwhelms others, because all logistics operations seek to achieve customer needs.
Important tips for managing your logistics
For the success of any business, especially the logistics management process that we mentioned in the previous point; There must be some matters, which may be overlooked or ignored by many, despite their importance and prominent role in the success of the management process; So we give you these tips:
1. Technological Logistics
Using technology in managing logistics will make the task easier, so always make sure you have the latest technology and technology included in your work.
2. Hire competent people
Hiring a skilled work team will make the process successful and will seek to develop services. Today, the process of hiring and finding competencies and specialists is easier than ever before, as the presence of specialized companies with integrated work teams, and the presence of freelancers online, whom you can use in management processes, order tracking, support and logistical consultancy.
3. Learning from mistakes to avoid them in the future
During the course of the work and throughout the time in which work began, monitor the operational and administrative changes and indicators and track any mistakes that may have previously occurred to put them on a priority scale and then put solutions to them to avoid them and improve these solutions in the long run.
4. Develop comprehensive plans
This option is indispensable as a clear, comprehensive and orderly business vision avoids many hassles and problems, especially in contingency plans where alternative procedures are followed; To ensure the continuity of the process.
The above were the most important details that should be taken into account if you are an online store owner, or intend to. Do not forget to follow the advice and take good care of various aspects of the subject until you finally reach a successful store that meets the desires of customers and obtains their satisfaction, without running into any problems.