Merchants are steadily getting ready for holiday 2013 and many have several concerns as they head into this busy time of the year.
Fred Lizza, CEO of Dydacomp, an ecommerce software company which targets small and mid-size businesses, said in a recent interview at IRCE 2013, merchant’s concerns are centered on streamlining orders, getting more orders through more channels with the same or fewer resources.
Lizza said merchants need to make sure they are supporting all the different channels, the different ways to ship, all the payment and processing alternatives.
With last year being a free shipping war season, according to Lizza, his clients are asking how to best take advantage of free shipping without hurting their bottom line, tie it in with promotions, achieve certain thresholds in order for consumers to qualify for free shipping.
Lizza said merchants are looking at free shipping as both a marketing routine and as a bottom line expense. Before, free shipping was looked at as a pure expense and now merchants have learned how to use it as a tool.
According to Lizza, ship-from-store is a shipping method that is beneficial for bigger merchants because they have a larger footprint on a more national scale. Fewer and fewer merchants have a bricks-and-mortar store products are shipped from, but what merchants have done, is taken that concept and applied it to a third party fulfillment and drop shipping operation.
Lizza said within their systems, one of the things merchants can do is ship from the nearest warehouse, which is the equivalent of ship-from-store. But the merchant doesn’t have to maintain that inventory themselves, they can use a third party drop-shipper or fulfillment house and have a network of them.
Merchants can still provide rapid delivery to the customer so that they have that service element without having to duplicate inventory in a centralized warehouse.