A version of this article has been published in SDC Executive, contributed by Yoav Kutner, CEO and Co-Founder of Oro Inc.
Companies investing in supply chain innovations – especially those that improve customer experience – will be well-positioned for growth despite economic and geopolitical instability.
It’s particularly true for B2B eCommerce businesses. Shipping challenges, inflation, and economic turmoil leave no option but to reconsider the supply chain management approach. Monitoring and responding to disruptions as they happen may be enough to stay afloat, but growth-focused brands need to look beyond just that.
Supply chain digitization presents opportunities for eCommerce leaders to level up their operations and make their businesses more resilient. Here are five ways to use digital technologies to drive supply chain innovations effectively:
1. Proactively leverage customer data: by bringing together data from critical business systems into one digital thread, you can create experiences that customers will appreciate. For example, you can use regional inventory data to develop marketing campaigns personalized for specific customers. You can also enhance communications by providing updates on product availability in stock or personalized discounts as compensation for unavoidable delays.
2. Make smarter decisions: Creating a data center that all decision-makers in your company can access can help you make smarter decisions. If there’s a hiccup at the warehouse, decision-makers at all levels can get updated quickly and make better-informed decisions.
3. Plan for the future: With more data at their disposal, businesses can anticipate trends and plan more effectively. The right supply chain data can help enrich sales projections and put new sourcing and distribution infrastructure in place on an as-needed basis.
4. Unlock new distribution channels: Integrating your supply chain and eCommerce infrastructure enables you to streamline fulfillment. For example, you can deliver online orders using in-store inventory. Or you can ensure faster fulfillment with less friction with the help of the buy online, pickup in-store (BOPIS) offering.
5. Get ready for growth: Investing in more intelligent supply chains and data synchronization will keep your company agile while helping you build out the capabilities you need to scale your business over time.
By enriching their supply chains with modern B2B eCommerce, workflow, and data management tools, B2B brands will augment all aspects of their operations and maintain a high customer experience despite supply chain disruptions.