The eCommerce landscape has changed dramatically in the past few years. Though online shopping has been around for nearly two decades, it is only in recent years that it has become truly mainstream. It is mainly due to technological advances and shipping logistics that have made buying goods online more accessible and convenient.
As a result of the growing trend, businesses are now selling their products and services online. These businesses need to find ways to differentiate themselves from the competition to stay competitive. They can do this by offering order tracking to their customers.
This blog will talk about order tracking in eCommerce and How It Works.
2) What is Order Tracking in eCommerce?
Order tracking refers to the ability of customers to monitor their orders as they are being processed and shipped. It allows them to stay up-to-date on the progress of their demands, ensuring that they receive their items promptly. It includes tracking numbers, estimated delivery dates, and shipping statuses. Customers can use this information to monitor their orders and ensure that they are on track to receive their items.
3) How Does Order Tracking in eCommerce Work?
Most eCommerce businesses use order tracking software to manage and track their orders. This software is typically integrated with the company's website, making it easy for customers to track their orders.
When an order is placed, the software will assign a tracking number to the order. The customer can use this number to track the progress of their order. The software will also update the tracking information as the order progresses through the shipping process.
The final step in order tracking is delivering the product to the customer. Once the product has been delivered, the tracking information will be updated to reflect the completed order.
4) What happens once a purchase has been made online?
The following steps can typically be expected when the purchase is made online.
Step 1: Once the order is placed, an email is sent to the customer with all the order information. It will include the product name, quantity, price, and shipping address.
Step 2: The order is then forwarded to the merchant, who will start processing the order.
Step 3: The merchant will then assign a tracking number to the order. The customer can use this number to track the progress of their order. The software will also update the tracking information as the order progresses through the shipping process.
Step 4: The final step is delivering the order to the customer. The tracking information will be updated to reflect that the order has been delivered.
5) What are the different types of order tracking in eCommerce?
There are many different types of order tracking in eCommerce, ranging from automated tracking systems to manual order tracking processes. Some common examples include:
5.1) Automated order tracking systems
The automated system uses advanced software and algorithms to track orders automatically, without the need for human intervention. It is typically seen in large, high-volume eCommerce businesses that handle hundreds or thousands of orders each day.
It provides real-time order tracking and shipment notifications, a significant boon for customers who want to know exactly when their goods will be delivered.
5.2) Manual order tracking systems
In contrast, manual order tracking systems rely on human input and are typically seen in smaller or mid-sized businesses that handle fewer orders each day.
At the most basic level, this often involves manually entering each new order into a database so that it can be tracked throughout the fulfillment process.
5.3) Hybrid order tracking systems
Hybrid order tracking systems are a combination of both automated and manual processes.
They typically involve using an automated system for data entry and incorporating human input at specific points in the process, such as when fulfilling orders.
6) Why is order tracking important in eCommerce?
There are multiple reasons why order tracking is essential in eCommerce. Here are the top four reasons:
6.1) It helps to ensure customer satisfaction
The goal of any eCommerce business should be to provide a great customer experience. Providing a great customer experience ensures that orders are fulfilled correctly and on time.
Order tracking allows businesses to see where each order is in the fulfillment process to provide accurate updates to customers.
It also helps businesses identify any potential issues that could cause delays in fulfilling an order.
6.2) It helps to improve operational efficiency
Another reason why order tracking is essential in eCommerce is that it can help businesses improve their operational efficiency.
When orders are correctly tracked, businesses have visibility into every aspect of the fulfillment process. This visibility allows companies to identify any bottlenecks or areas of inefficiency.
6.3) It helps in preventing unnecessary delays or missed deadlines
The ability to effectively track orders can help businesses reduce unnecessary delays in their fulfillment process. When order tracking is done correctly, you can identify and prevent any potential issues before they become a problem. This helps ensure that your shipments reach your customers on time and without delay.
6.4) It provides a clear picture of your business's performance
Order tracking can also help businesses get a clear picture of their performance. By having visibility into the entire fulfillment process, companies can identify areas excelling and areas where they need to improve.
This information can be used to make necessary changes to improve efficiency and optimize the fulfillment process.
7) What are some of the challenges associated with order tracking in eCommerce, and how can they be overcome?
Various challenges can arise while running an eCommerce business, such as issues with supply chain visibility and managing complex fulfillment processes.
Here is the list of top 5 challenges that are often associated with order tracking in eCommerce and how they can be overcome:
7.1) Lack of Visibility into the Fulfillment Process
One of the main issues businesses face is a lack of visibility into their fulfillment process. It can lead to problems such as misplaced inventory, late shipments, and lost or damaged products.
To overcome this challenge, it's essential to have a robust order tracking system that provides visibility into every step of the process. This way, you can identify any potential issues and make necessary changes to improve efficiency.
7.2) Managing Complex Fulfillment Processes
Another common challenge is managing complex fulfillment processes. It can be especially difficult for businesses that fulfill different orders, such as eCommerce and in-person purchases.
Thankfully, several tools are available to help businesses manage these complex processes more effectively. These include order tracking software that provides real-time visibility into the fulfillment process and automated warehouses that can quickly move products through the system.
7.3) Ensuring Order Accuracy
Ensuring accurate orders is another common challenge businesses face. It can be challenging to do manually, but several tools are available to help.
For example, many order tracking software programs offer features that allow businesses to verify orders before they are processed. It can help reduce the number of errors and ensure that customers receive the products they ordered.
7.4) Meeting Customer Expectations
Another common challenge is meeting customer expectations. It includes ensuring that orders are delivered on time and excellent customer service.
There are several ways to meet these expectations, such as investing in quality control measures and using order tracking software to provide real-time updates to customers.
7.5) Managing Returns
Finally, businesses need to be prepared to handle returns. It can be a challenge, as it requires developing a process for managing returns and ensuring that products are still in stock.
There are a few ways to manage returns, such as setting up a return policy and offering refunds or exchanges. Additionally, businesses can use order tracking software to track returned items and ensure that they are processed promptly.
8) Tips on how to use order tracking effectively in your eCommerce business:
To ensure that the eCommerce business is using the order tracking system effectively, a few essential tips can be followed.
- Ensure that the order tracking software is easy to use and offers detailed information about customer orders. It will help make managing returns faster, easier, and more efficient.
- Consider developing a return policy that clearly outlines how customers should go about initiating a return and what types of items are eligible for return or exchange.
- It can help streamline the process for customers, as they will know what steps to take to initiate a return or request an exchange.
- Work with suppliers and vendors to ensure that products are available in sufficient quantities so that returns can be processed quickly and efficiently. It may require planning or adjusting your product inventory based on trends or popular items.
- Maintain an organized and up-to-date database of customer return requests to ensure that all details are recorded accurately and can be referred to if necessary. It can help minimize the need for customers to repeat themselves when they contact you with questions or concerns about their order tracking information.
9) Final thoughts
̧Order tracking is an essential part of eCommerce. It works by working with suppliers and vendors to ensure that products are available in the right quantities, maintaining an organized database of customer details, and ensuring that returns can be processed quickly and efficiently. Whether you are a business owner or a consumer trying to track your shipment, understanding how order tracking works is essential for ensuring smooth operations and successful outcomes.