There has been a significant increase in the interest and demand for retailers to provide their goods online. However, many traditional retailers have been resistant, slow to shift online; with the majority of traditional retailers still on their first generation webstore or not trading online at all. For many online shoppers it is the value of convenience and the cost savings that attracts them to online shopping but without local retailers’ representation online, many shoppers are going to overseas retailers in increasing numbers. This means that local traditional retailers are losing market share to overseas online retailers.
So why are traditional retailers so resistant to move online?
- Retailers argue, while online retail sales are growing rapidly, they still represent only a small part of total sales.
- Traditional retailers generally view online sales as competition and being cannibalistic to their brick and mortar stores.
However retailers should not view it is as online vs brick and mortar; in fact it should be viewed as a multichannel retail environment, where the different channels are complementary, not competitive. On the other hand a multichannel retail environment is not something that can be accomplished overnight. A change in business model to encompass multichannel retailing must be carefully planned and implemented with significant consideration placed on selecting the facilitating technology.
Here is a recent example of how the correct technology has supported the success of many online retailers. [http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-04-12/the-consumer-quarter/3946994]. Catch of the Day is supported by AccellosOne and MicroChannel Services.
Therefore you cannot afford to adopt a myopia view, due to the difficulties with fulfilment of online orders:
- Large volume of small orders
- The warehouse/storeman is now the “check-out chick“
- Returns are as difficult to deal with as first picks
- One screen order management is crucial
- A website makes the retailer available 24/7
- Your accounting ERP system will most likely not be able to handle a large influx of orders and may cause a bottleneck in your operation
Without a scalable warehouse solution supporting your business, achieving a seamless multichannel retail environment is not going to be possible. If you have any questions or would like to discuss how AccellosOne can help you achieve multichannel retail environment, please contact Julie Parry on 1300 440 444;