Anyone who has a company that has experienced immense growth knows the eye rolls that come along with explaining your growing pains. These gestures are generally followed by, “what a great problem to have.” From the outside looking in, those reactions are right, since more growth equals more profits. From the other side of it all, growing pains are pains. Rapid and unexpected growth can lead to the entire company's downfall. Companies, for example, grew so fast during the pandemic that they didn’t have the employees to keep up with the demand and ended up losing out on potential profits. For most businesses, you don’t get second chances. If you fail to fulfill a customer's wants at that moment, then they most likely will not come back to you when you do have your growth under control and can handle the capacity.
If you are an e-commerce seller then you most likely see your largest influx of orders during Q4. It can be challenging, especially in 2022 when we are juggling supply chain problems and labor shortages. So, how do we combat growing pains?
Start Planning Today
If you have not made a plan or analyzed past data, go do that today! Planning for every scenario is going to be the best way to navigate a busy season. It’s not about buying too much inventory, it’s about planning for staff and projecting an influx of orders based on the busiest days. The best place to start planning is to look at your own company data. Check for the days when orders were late getting out the door, you were short-staffed, or had company complaints. These moments will help you fill those gaps and ensure they don’t happen again.
Not sure where last year went wrong or worried about this year? It’s time to hire an expert. Consultants are a great place to start if you’re unsure if you can invest in a supply chain specialist full-time or are not sure if it’s something you actually need. Having a specialist involved can save you time and money when handling these hurdles. They are able to look at the data both in the industry and within your company to determine your best course of action. Once again, this is an act-now situation so plans can be put into place.
Even if you do all of the preparation and feel confident, it’s time to be transparent with your staff and customers. Last year, when there was an expectation of supply chain and small parcel shipping delays, companies of all sizes chose to communicate these problems with customers. They generally followed up with the information by telling people what they are doing to mitigate the situation and how the customers can still get their items. Continue transparency as the busy season gets going by keeping inventory notices accurate. Keeping your email list full of updates whether that be when orders go out or when problems that will affect them have occurred is a great way to gain consumer trust.
Busy season is named just so because of how hectic it can be. Technology is the best tool you have to mitigate these problems. An order management system (OMS) is a great tool to keep consumers informed. A system that can pull data from years past to help plan your shipping strategy. All of this can be achieved with DesktopShipper, a small parcel shipping solution with data recovery and order management software. On top of all of this, DesktopShipper’s tracking ability will keep consumers informed and reduce their anxiety about not getting their packages in time for the holidays. Once you have analyzed what you need to do to make Q4 successful, DesktopShipper can assist you in setting up your shipping strategy within the software. The flexible API allows companies to ship how they would like to and get through the busy season successfully.