Ecommerce and omnichannel are moving at a torrid pace. To stay ahead of the game and not get eaten alive by the competition, operations and fulfillment teams have to continually develop tactics and strategies to shorten delivery times while managing costs – not an easy trick!
Where do you go to learn what other companies in ecommerce and omnichannel have successfully evaluated and implemented? Ecommerce Operations Summit 2019, April 9-11 in Columbus, OH – with its 100+ speakers, roundtables and exhibitors – is totally geared to all things DTC. It’s the perfect venue to validate your fulfillment strategies, find cost saving ideas and improve the customer experience.
Here are 4 ways we have found the conference works for our company and clients:
#1: Learn About Practical Solutions
Theory is great but show me the practical application, problem evaluation, costs and benefits. That’s what we all want to see. Here are 3 examples that can have a major impact on your business. Review the full agenda and you’ll see many more:
Fulfillment Network Expansion: The Pros and Cons
Reducing the time to get orders to customers and shipping cost are two key factors in customer purchase decisions. While not for every company, one solution is to expand your network of fulfillment nodes (multiple facilities). Many ecommerce businesses rule this out because of the costs not only in terms of capital but also labor and inventory. But how do you compete with Amazon and other major companies when that’s their strategy? In our presentation two of our clients – Crutchfield Corp. and Cleaner’s Supply – will give you an inside look at their real-life analysis. B2B Cleaner’s Supply implemented a multi-DC approach over 10 years ago with good sales and customer service success.
Our opinion: Our objective is for you to understand the costs and benefits of multi-facility distribution, the challenges and how to overcome them, and when a 3PL approach is the way to go. FLEXE will discuss how temporary warehouse facilities may be an option in this strategy.
The panel includes moderator Brian Barry, President of F. Curtis Barry & Company; George Wade, Business Process Improvement Project Manager, Crutchfield Corp.; Mike Lucas, Vice President of Distribution for Cleaner’s Supply and Adrian Grigg, VP of Business Development at FLEXE.
Navigating Multi-Carrier Rate Shopping to Meet Customer Delivery Promises
Ecommerce companies are finding it increasingly important to optimize shipping in order to improve the customer experience and drive repeat purchases, brand loyalty and profitability. To achieve this, you need to give customers fast, flexible shipping options at checkout, enabled by a back-end tool that rate shops carriers. This session addresses three types of rate shopping: Basic, time in transit and Advanced Date Shopping (ADS). The presenters will explore the implications for different types of rate shopping to enable you to meet delivery promises, delight customers and reduce shipping costs.
Our opinion: Enterprise shipping systems make shipping data available for analysis, improve international shipping and documentation prep, provide central control of multi-facility rate shopping and reduce maintenance. The expo floor will greatly assist with your understanding of these systems and their capabilities, as well.
Presenters include Justin Cramer, Global Project Management Director, ProShip, and Ashley Liebke, President and CEO, Vision Media Group LLC.
Analyzing Carrier Accessorial Costs: Know the Impact on Your Bottom Line
Carriers continue to add new surcharges and increase existing ones, and there aren’t caps on these added costs. Accessorial costs can now add 20% or more to shipping expenditures. This session will include examples of how shippers can mitigate these increases and strategies designed to address spiraling accessorial costs.
Speakers Tim Sailor and Stephanie Laverty of Navigo Consulting Group will give you practical ways to quantify and lower accessorials through negotiation methods that can improve your bottom line.
Our opinion: Many companies can be more analytical about their freight charges. Once understood, what changes can your company make? Truly a high priority area.
#2: Meet Vendors to Discuss Projects
We have always found vendors to be great resources to provide a perspective on potential solutions for projects you’re working on. By our count the expo hall at Ecommerce Operations Summit spans 14 categories of providers including:
- Call center solutions
- Shipping and data analytic systems
- Some of the largest automation integrators
- Consultants in a variety of specialties
- Freight and parcel spend management
- Packaging, labeling and supplies
#3: Take Part in High-Value Roundtables
We find the conference’s breakfast roundtables to be a valuable experience. Some conference speakers host a roundtable, but it isn’t a rehash of their session. The roundtables represent a chance to have a dialog among your peers on a range of hot-button subjects and trends. Exchange business cards and network later.
#4: Expand Your Team Knowledge
Give your entire operations and fulfillment team exposure to DTC topics and solutions, validate your fulfillment strategy and develop ways to improve the customer experience and reduce costs. Cover the entire conference rather than selected sessions.
Act now: conference rates go up March 1. We’ll see you there in Columbus!
Brian Barry is President of F. Curtis Barry & Company