COVID-19 threw the consumer goods industry into chaos this year. Unexpected demand spikes, as a result of the pandemic, upended supply chains, as retailers, manufacturers and suppliers struggled to ensure continued supply of products for customers.
A large portion of those products fell under the vitamins and supplements category, as consumers were buying them in bulk to boost overall immune health.
Unfortunately, not every supplement business could keep up with demand. Just as hard as it was (and still is) to get their hands on products due to backorders, it’s even harder to fulfill and ship them to customers fast enough since new players are entering the market every day.
And with an increase in market size comes an increase in competition. Consumers have unlimited options for vitamins and supplements. As a result, it’s important to have an organized process in place for receiving and storing goods, processing and picking orders, and packing and shipping items.
One business, in particular, knew they couldn't do it alone. That’s when GLF stepped in as their e-commerce fulfillment partner to simplify their current order fulfillment process.
Orders were coming in left and right. We didn’t have the staff in-house to keep up with demand, nor did we have the infrastructure in place to keep a pulse on inventory levels.–Supplement Client of GLF
To keep our client afloat (and their customers satisfied) during a hectic time, fast order fulfillment was key, in addition to competitive shipping times and rates to get items out the door.
Not every storefront integrates directly with fulfillment software– at least that was the case for our client. Prior to the integration, our client was manually entering data into its system. With the increase in online sales, their order accuracy rate went down, so the first thing we did was set up a custom integration to ensure consistent data flow between their disparate systems.
This allowed our client to track everything from orders to returns, resulting in faster fulfillment. Not to mention, their order accuracy rate has drastically improved since everything is now automated.
Prior to the partnership, our client struggled to keep a pulse on inventory. They didn’t have a dedicated space to store their vitamins and supplements, which made it difficult to know the locations and quantities of each product. It also made it difficult to identify trends among customers to know which products were and weren’t selling.
By updating their technology stack, our client can easily track inventory to locate products and fulfill orders. This helps them leverage data to prepare for unexpected spikes and dips, as seen during the pandemic.
Now, our client stores all of their vitamins and supplements at our facilities to ensure they’re not only fulfilled on time, but also in-stock and ready to ship, no matter the situation.
Shipping costs have been rising across the country and are expected to continue as the pandemic drags on. With free two-day shipping being offered from global conglomerates, mid-sized companies have been at risk because many don’t have the capacity to keep up with increased demand for deliveries.
Thankfully, GLF has access to a global distribution network to provide clients with end-to-end e-commerce fulfillment solutions to ship anywhere in the world. This means, our clients get access to lower shipping rates and shorter delivery times because we’re sending larger quantities of orders from multiple vendors at once.
Now, our client has no weak links in their supply chain from having to deal with multiple contracts.
"We're finally at a place now where we can take a step back to focus on the growth of our business without having to worry about bandwidth, thanks to GLF".–Supplement Client of GLF