Order fulfillment is a complex operation. The right partner knows that every aspect of the order cycle is key to creating the ideal experience for the customer. Online retailers can utilize the fulfillment process as a marketing initiative to wow their customers and build loyalty. Here are tips to help you make fulfillment a ‘marketing thing’:
Engage in two-way conversation
- Let your customers know your shipping information ahead of time. Tell them you will email them once their order ships – and then do it! By setting the expectations early you can also build trust early; which is a step to customer loyalty.
- Encourage customers to tweet about their purchase or post a photo of their products on Instagram. Put instructions inside every box – and make every order “photo-worthy” with custom packaging.
- Ask for input. Follow up with a survey post-purchase and ask about shipping methods, times, costs, etc. from the customer’s perspective. Get their feedback (with an incentive to respond) and use it to improve your current operations and explore new options.
Align product packing materials with your marketing campaign
- Insert offers based on buying history to increase conversion.
- Wow your first-time buyers with coupons as a thank you for purchasing.
- If you’re running a certain special or holiday promotion, tie it into every purchase with special wrapping paper, colored packing materials, and creative order packages.
Utilize additional opportunities
- Explore value-add offerings available in your warehouse like embroidery or gift wrapping. These will give you more product options and great new programs to market!
- Align your marketing efforts with your operational calendar (peak times, shipping cut-off dates, etc.) to ensure flawless execution of your brand strategy.
- Support causes your customers care about. If your brand is eco-friendly, tout on your website, social, and in every order that you use recyclable materials and encourage customers to reuse their packaging in creative ways! (and make sure you actually use those things, too)