Fulfilling promises with Acumatica & 3G Pacejet Shipping
In this blog post we will consider the implications of shipping in the overall customer experience and how it set sellers up to deliver every shipment as promised.
Merchants, whether manufacturers, distributors, or retailers, are constantly on the hunt to deliver better customer experiences. From first contact, to final delivery, over and over again (hopefully!). As an Acumatica user, you already know how many touchpoints the ERP has with managing and enhancing the customer experience, but what about shipping? Though not always top of mind, shipping is a very important aspect of customer experience because it largely determines:
- Whether orders arrive on time
- The accuracy, and condition, of the items received
- How cost-effective a partner you are to do business with
While shipping may not be the first thing associated with customer experience, it is one of those things that can cement a merchant’s position as a reliable partner and source of certainty. Each of the three elements of an exceptional shipping experience can be managed through the Acumatica ERP in conjunction with a shipping software suite – like 3G Transportation Management & Shipping Software.
On time arrivals. The two aspects of shipping with the greatest effect on timeliness are warehouse processes, and carrier & service selection. Automating workflows around label & paperwork creation, packing, and rating reduce the throughput time in the warehouse significantly. It also minimizes the impact of sudden staffing shortages or other conditions outside of merchants’ control. Selecting the right shipping method is equally important – as different carriers, services, and modes will have different delivery windows. However, without a single interface to compare all of them instantly, it’s easy to choose the wrong one.
Accurate, intact merchandise. Warehouse workflows, specifically those which can be automated, play a significant role in reducing (or eliminating) order and labeling errors. Features like scan-packing can deliver over 99.9% accuracy (on top of time savings). Meanwhile the ability to batch ship, create retailer-compliant paperwork, and connect with EDI transmission systems can substantially reduce the likelihood of penalty-inducing errors. And preventing damage can be as simple as picking the right carrier, service, and accessorials to handle a particular kind of merchandise.
Competitive all-in pricing. Nothing can lead to a poor experience faster than a customer thinking they found a great deal, only to be hit with an unexpectedly big shipping charge. While certain warehouse efficiencies can affect pricing – like moving orders through quickly to avoid last minute needs for service upgrades – connectivity and carrier choice play the largest roles. It is of the utmost importance to provide an accurate estimate of shipping charges at the time of purchase. Otherwise, you may end up having to absorb the difference or bill the customer more than anticipated. And of course the more carriers, modes, and services one can simultaneously shop across, the better the chance of finding a competitive price.
Acumatica is a powerful tool for managing the full customer experience lifecycle. The flows of information within a company, or between companies and their customers, make orders easy to accept, verify, process, and invoice. Integrated tools, such as the 3G suite (which counts 3G Pacejet Shipping, 3G Transportation Management, the 3G Carrier Network among its products) further extend customer experience enhancement to shipping, too. While an exceptional shipping experience may not secure a customer’s business forever, a poor one can ruin that relationship in an instant.