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animal supply co uses orocommerce

Major Pet Foods Supplier Uses OroCommerce to Implement Headless eCommerce for 3PL Support

Introduction

For any company, business challenges grow in proportion to your success. And if you are partnered with retailers that sell products to end consumers through a variety of channels, things can get complicated quickly. In B2B eCommerce, scaling for and adapting to these challenges is much easier when the right technology solution is in place. Last year, Animal Supply Company (ASC) – a leading US pet foods and supplies distributor – selected OroCommerce due to its rich shopping functionality that enables a compelling user experience for their retail customers. In addition, it was vital for ASC to select a flexible platform that could seamlessly integrate with a variety of enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems.

Originally, Animal Supply Company implemented OroCommerce as an online platform for their retailers. ASC is now adding the functionality to handle 3PL for direct to consumer sales on behalf of their retailers. This enables their retailers to focus on landing online orders and growing their business while Animal Supply can manage the warehousing, inventory, and order fulfillment.  “We are very excited to see our digital strategy coming to life through these new products and services,” said Angela Spears, Senior Vice President, Digital Strategy & Marketing. “Our focus has been on supporting the success of our retailer and brand partners, and these new capabilities will empower our partners and help push the industry forward.”

This case study demonstrates how OroCommerce can address custom business needs for distributors that want to offer 3PL services. It also showcases how companies can use the application as an order management system and a headless eCommerce platform.

Business Profile: Animal Supply Company

Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Animal Supply is one of the largest distributors of wholesale pet foods and supplies in the US. The company supplies products from over 465 brands to 7000+ independent and regional pet specialty stores, online retailers, farm and feed stores, and veterinary clinics.

Animal Supply needed to provide a modern, mobile-responsive B2B eCommerce website for its business customers. To turn their vision into reality, Animal Supply required a ready-to-use, yet completely flexible and customizable B2B platform. Their solution required B2B merchant features for:

  • Multi-brand and multi-website management
  • Shopping by categories and brands
  • Quick ordering
  • Advanced search
  • Mobile ordering
  • Multiple warehouse and inventory support
  • Automated customer-specific pricing
  • User-friendly checkout

It’s important to note Animal Supply grew through acquisition. With each company acquisition, Animal Supply inherited different ERP systems, warehouses, and other legacy platforms. To manage data dispersed across multiple sources, Animal Supply needed a system that could break down these silos and collate information.

OroCommerce’s flexibility to integrate with external business systems and its rich out-of-the-box feature set were the main reasons Animal Supply selected the OroCommerce B2B eCommerce platform.

How Animal Supply Provides 3PL Services to Retailers Using OroCommerce

Businesses selling online often outsource their logistics and supply chain operations to 3PL service providers that take over transportation, inventory/cargo storage, and order fulfillment activities. 3PL services may include transportation procurement, inventory and logistics management, freight audit, shipment tracking, and order returns or exchanges.

Animal Supply currently operates 21 distribution centers, with 10 of those serving their 3PL (eFulfillment) business, 440 transportation assets, and works with approved 3PL carriers to provide its nationwide network of retailers with fast and cost-friendly transportation services across 48 states enabling the company to reach 99% within two business days. Animal Supply can take over all supply chain management operations and handle order fulfillment for its retailers that accept online and offline eCommerce orders.

3PL Challenges


OroCommerce simplifies 3PL operations via Headless eCommerce model

To take online orders, Animal Supply’s retailers use various types of eCommerce storefronts and shopping portals. Regardless of what’s used on the front-end, Animal Supply handles the inventory, shipping, and logistics for their retailers. To facilitate and support these operations, Animal Supply needed a flexible backend solution that would allow them to:

OroCommerce was deployed as a centralized order management system (OMS) that processes orders coming from many external sales channels and online stores. This gave Animal Supply a single system for processing orders from multiple channels and storefronts as all eCommerce channels funnel into OroCommerce. As end consumers place their order with an Animal Supply retailer on an eCommerce site or through other shopping portals, their order information is automatically transferred to Animal Supply’s OroCommerce application for further processing.

  • Aggregate order data from their retailer’s various front-end systems, sales channels, and other third-party systems
  • Obtain a single view of all retailers and consumer-related data
  • Manage and track all order fulfilment operations
  • Create more holistic view of the end consumer for retailers
  • Easily integrate with retailers and provide them with a seamless 3PL flow

Solution: Use OroCommerce as a Headless eCommerce Platform

OroCommerce was deployed as a centralized order management system (OMS) that processes orders coming from many external sales channels and online stores. This gave Animal Supply a single system for processing orders from multiple channels and storefronts as all eCommerce channels funnel into OroCommerce. As end consumers place their order with an Animal Supply retailer on an eCommerce site or through other shopping portals, their order information is automatically transferred to Animal Supply’s OroCommerce application for further processing.

By leveraging OroCommerce as a centralized backend order management system, Animal Supply uses the application as a headless eCommerce platform. A headless eCommerce platform is a system architecture where the front-end user interface and backend are separated. Because front and backend are “chopped apart” and aren’t codependent, both systems can be changed and updated independently, without reconfiguring the entire eCommerce system.

While Animal Supply retailers take care of buyer front-end experience, the OroCommerce back-end provides a single source of assimilated data for the company’s multiple sales channels as well as inventory and warehousing operations.

This is possible because OroCommerce integrates with Animal Supply’s multiple ERPs through two-way access points to exchange data. As soon as order-related data such as shipment status or tracking information is received by OroCommerce, it automatically sends an update to the retailer.

Using OroCommerce as an OMS allows Animal Supply to improve the way they work with retailers by freeing them from the burden of logistics and order fulfillment. Through the use of OroCommerce as an OMS for both B2B and B2C eCommerce, Animal Supply obtains absolute visibility across all sales channels with a holistic view of their business.

Animal Supply Company has a compelling vision for the future, and with OroCommerce, it has the flexibility to innovate and scale to build digital solutions that position Animal Supply Company and its brand and retail partners to compete in a digital world.

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