We often encounter merchants that are quite active on marketplaces, but are not automatically importing their orders. In our opinion these merchants are at great risk of having to sell a ‘no’ to their customers and inevitably experience a decline in their marketplace ranking.
Inventory feed sends in accurate data
When you send in the inventory levels to a marketplace, you want this information to be accurate. To prevent you from selling more than you actually have in stock and having to cancel orders you are not able to deliver. Such a cancellation is disastrous for your sales rating.
An accurate inventory feed takes into account all the factors that can influence the stock. For instance newly purchased and received products and orders that come in via channels other than your webshop. Preferably you want to have this data processed (near) real time.
The moment you decide to start selling via marketplaces, but haven’t opted for an automated order import, you are at risk. You are processing orders manually that come in via marketplaces and are therefore not able to keep your inventory level continuously accurate.
You can keep this up when you are only receiving about 12 orders a day, but try to keep up when you are receiving 12 orders per hour. You will have to hire someone fulltime to type over the orders, just to keep your inventory up to date! This however does not include the chance of errors that can be made and the fact that this employee needs a 30 minute break.
When you send in an inventory feed, but are not importing orders, does the feed check out?
The 5 risks of not having order import
There are a few risks you may encounter by not importing orders automatically but doing this manually. We have listed a few:
It takes longer to put orders into your own system, to which order picking starts at a later time and it is not processed as quick in the logistic process.
Increased chance of errors such as typos.
It takes long to update your inventory, to which you risk selling products double.
Manually inserting track&trace codes with the marketplace. By doing this manually you increase the chance of errors and it takes longer to mark an order as ‘shipped’.
It takes time and therefore costs money.
The risks listed above have a joint effect: the decrease of the sales rating when you can’t live up to the promises you have made to your customers. A lower rating has influence to the ‘buy box’ and therefore the conversion and revenue!
Cheap is expensive
Some marketplace integrators in the Netherlands and abroad lure customers with low prices. At first this might sound interesting. But it is important to set up an integration that will not cost a lot of time as well.
An order import is invaluable to a good integration. When a marketplace connection is being offered without the option for order import, you might want to consider whether this is best solution for you. In the long run, cheap will always end being expensive… .
From the very start EffectConnect was of the opinion that automated order import must be standard to every marketplace integration. As it should be! It is an integral part of sales via marketplaces which you can’t do without as merchant.
When a marketplace connection is being offered without the option for order import, you might want to consider whether this is best solution for you.
Want to know how to set up the ideal application landscape to start selling online via marketplaces? Download this free whitepaper!