Friday, March 23, 2012
In many ways, the small online store has taken the place of the family-owned small corner store. Some of the best shopping websites are actually based around a store that used to operate strictly locally. A crafter may sell handmade items from a brick and mortar storefront and the addition of a website makes those products available around the world. Others websites evolved from online auctioning that got big enough to go independent from the auction website. Online stores are often owned and operated within a family, while others become family-like with a tight-knit operation and everyone pitching in to achieve the business’ goals.
Of course, the definition of “small” lends itself to many definitions. There can be anywhere from one to a couple of dozen employees. Sometimes that store produces the items it sells and sometimes it operates as a middleman between the manufacturer and the consumer. Often, these stores choose a specific theme and niche to focus on their market. The key factor that these stores have in common is that they are advertising online, selling online, and delivering products to their customers directly. Every service available in large online megastores is also expected of this small retailer, including a shipping system that ships their packages quickly with package visibility for their customers.
In the shipping department specifically, small online retailers typically ship up to a hundred packages a day. This retailer needs to be able to ship anywhere in the world, since each order is valuable and happy customers who receive their order in a timely manner are essential to build the brand and spread the word about the website. After orders are received and payment collected, getting those orders out the door is the highest priority. This is one reason why multi-carrier shipping software is so essential for this small retailer – the shipping department needs to know the best way to send a package in the time frame needed. A good multi-carrier shipping system obtains that information instantly and accurately. In addition, the right shipping software will connect to shopping cart and order management systems to make sure data is entered only once.
The web is a great equalizer, allowing an attractive, efficient, informative website for a small retailer to look and work as well as the largest online sellers. Modern shopping cart software makes this marketing possible and that online storefront is accessible to anyone with a computer. After great marketing gets the order, the final step is the right multi-carrier shipping system to allow those same small retailers to get competitive shipping rates to around the world. With connectivity to their order data, fast parcel processing, and features to increase customer satisfaction, Harvey Software’s CPS shipping software is a great shipping option for the small online retailer.
Posted by Harvey Software, Inc. at 6:00 PM