What is distribution management and how does it work in ecommerce?

There are several moving elements to managing the flow of inventory through the supply chain. Each activity that takes place during distribution management is critical.

Let’s get down and dirty with the numerous activities that take place during the move from one stage to the next.

1. Inventory receiving in distribution management 

When ecommerce inventory reaches a warehouse or fulfillment center, it is unbound, processed, and stored.

A formal inventory receiving procedure (also known as “warehouse receiving”) is critical since it prepares your supply chain for efficient, cost-effective inventory management and fulfillment later on in the fulfillment process.

During this period, double-checking inventory counts is critical to assure that what was received from the manufacturer corresponds to what was ordered.

You risk low inventory accuracy or lost goods if you don’t follow a proper inventory intake procedure. This can have an impact on profit margins and inventory reporting.

2. Warehouse management

If the inventory isn’t received within the stated time frame, contact the seller to determine if an extension has been granted. The merchandise must then be watched to ensure there is adequate supply for demand.

Managing an inventory system entails tracking and storing it, as well as training and managing a warehouse staff on how to best keep track of inventory in the facility.

The use of a warehouse management system (WMS) is now standard practice to manage warehouses, which is a program developed especially for optimizing warehouse procedures such as warehouse inventory management. As a result, manual labor is reduced, allowing warehouse workers to focus on speed without sacrificing accuracy.

3. Packing orders when it comes to distribution management 

Once all goods for a single order have been selected from the shelves, packing begins.

Packing is a far more complicated process than you would believe. It entails loading the appropriate goods into the right-sized box using the proper packaging materials to ensure that they arrive safely to their ultimate destination at the lowest cost feasible.

Packaging should always minimize shipping expenses and guarantee order accuracy by packing according to the smallest number of boxes (preventing split shipments) and utilizing the proper sort of packing materials for each item.

4. Shipping

In the conclusion, packed orders are delivered to their ultimate destinations. It’s frequently the end consumer for direct-to-consumer (DTC) businesses, but some offer B2B ecommerce services. In that scenario, a portion of the order is transferred to another firm (often bigger shipments with many items).

Ecommerce shipping is an important component in the distribution process since it influences customer happiness. In fact, 43 percent of online consumers consider fast and dependable delivery to be the most essential factor when purchasing online.

Having a solid shipping plan ensures that you can offer cost-effective shipping alternatives to your clients.

There are numerous alternatives to consider when it comes to delivery management, such as:

  • To give 2-day shipping at a reasonable cost, you must store inventory in numerous sites
  • Working with a wide range of national and local parcel carriers
  • With free delivery, a minimum cart value threshold that’s greater than your usual purchase amount, and a selection of payment options, you’ll be able to provide this

Can distribution management be outsourced?

Yes, they do. An outsourced supply chain is typically more successful and efficient, which translates to a better client experience and profitability. Many rapidly expanding businesses collaborate with a distribution partner like Launch Fulfillment to optimize distribution, reduce risk, save money, and speed up transit times. This also saves ecommerce businesses time by outsourcing fulfillment, allowing them to focus more on revenue-generating activities.