It’s not a secret that the eCommerce supply chain has been recognized as a key link in business development, but it just came more into focus during the pandemic.
Statistics show that even before the pandemic, experts noticed some changes in the industry processes regarding the logistics, transportation, and supply chain sectors.
We Found out that Everything Impacts the Supply Chain!
Yes, we realized with the pandemic, geopolitical world events, and prices jumping and falling that our supply chains are so fragile that we need to have a backup plan.
Those businesses that have realized the global events will affect their business prepared a backup plan for their supply chains.
But those who were too occupied with their inner circles, thinking that it had nothing to do with their business, experienced the “out-of-stocks” phase.
So, if you are still not sure what can affect your business and on what level, try to remember that your eCommerce supply chain is sensitive to almost any change or disruption in the global market.
It can be a lockdown, shift in energy prices, emerging markets, inflation, technology innovations, etc.
What is the eCommerce Supply Chain?
The eCommerce supply chain is a process that manages the flow of goods from factory to store, and it’s a critical component of any business.
If you are an eCommerce company, your supply chain impacts how your business operates. For example, if you’re an online shoe retailer, your supply chain will include product sourcing and production, transportation, warehousing, and inventory management.
How does the eCommerce Supply Chain work?
The supply chain process has been quite successful for eCommerce and online retailers.
The business model relies on the complete digitalization of the supply chain process, which includes a fully integrated management system that enables the customer to make orders at any time and from anywhere.
The eCommerce supply chain is a critical link in business development. It is an essential part of any business strategy, as it defines what kind of products are available and how they reach the customer.
Why is the eCommerce Supply Chain Crucial?
The eCommerce supply chain is crucial because it allows you to provide your customers with the best possible experience. You want your customers to feel like they’re getting a seamless, easy-to-navigate shopping experience. And as the industry continues to develop, you can be successful by innovating and evolving your processes.
But the supply chain encompasses much more than just a process from the point when the purchase actually happens.
For example, managing product inventories for both online and offline sales channels is critical. You want to make sure that if a customer shops in-store, they find the same products in-store as they would online (or vice versa).
It will also ensure that orders are fulfilled quickly and efficiently. Additionally, implementing systems that automatically track incoming shipments and routes them for distribution will help streamline your process and make it more efficient.
Key Challenges in the eCommerce Supply Chain
Believe it or not, the pandemic showed just how fragile the supply chains could be. According to RetailNext (2020), 28% of retailers underwent shortages and out-of-stocks.
That means the disruptions in the supply chain could slam your business and put you in a “no-way-out” position.
So, what challenges bring this new age to your eCommerce supply chain, and how to deal with them.
- The eCommerce supply chain is constantly evolving in a fast-paced and ever-changing industry. It means that businesses must stay up to date with the latest changes in the field.
- The rise of mobile commerce, or mCommerce, has changed how we shop. With more people using their phones or tablets to purchase items online, there are more opportunities for things to go wrong with the supply chain process.
- As we mentioned before, these industrial processes are all interconnected. When something goes wrong in one section (such as with inventory management), it can impact another area of the supply chain where you need to purchase additional products.
- The critical challenge facing businesses across the board is scalability. How will you be able to scale up your business when you’re not sure what may happen with your supply chain?
Well, for the last one, the best advice is to stay informed, check what experts have to say about trends in the eCommerce industry, and try to be one step ahead.
Since we know that the entire eCommerce supply chain includes producers, vendors, warehouses, transportation companies, distribution centers, and retailers, these segments must be well planned and flexible.
The supply chain for digital retail is a constantly-evolving and changing process.
And the period from 2020 to 2022 showed how important it is to have a solid supply chain and a backup plan.
Whichever product or service you’re offering through your eCommerce store, you must think of finding reliable logistic partners, paying attention to the eCommerce and global economic trends, and automating your business processes.