What does Brexit mean for fulfilment? A quick look at possible destinations

Brexit UK EU referendum concept for out of Great Britain

The story so far

On 23rd June 2016, the United Kingdom’s voting population decided by a narrow margin to leave the EU and go it alone. The World was in shock at this decision as politicians panicked and left their positions quicker than it took to mark that little cross in a box on the ballot paper in the first place.

The bill to trigger article 50, which we need to leave the EU, has been through legal challenges, media campaigns against the challenges and is going through both Houses of Parliament.

Whether the outcome of the historic vote is welcomed for you and your business or not, we are further on the way to it happening – and in our industry of storage, distribution and order fulfilment, this change could potentially be Yin and Yang moment. Continue reading

What very business should know about warehouse locations

top-ten-tips-no-5

Could you get better value for money for fulfilment?

Heading north?

We have welcomed a few new clients on board recently for storage, order fulfilment and returns services. As we are in the warehousing and fulfilment business, this is positive but unsurprising news!

What is more interesting of that two of our new clients are London based, and the biggest factor behind their decision to use a northern fulfilment company is value for money. Having considered local service providers closer to their offices, they discovered that the costs were beyond their budget and started to look further afield.

This got us thinking at DMC – does it matter where a fulfilment centre is located?

  Continue reading

Want to cut ‘click to pick’ time by 75%?

Robot loader

Amazon robots and the future for fulfilment  

We’re not afraid to admit it. At DMC we love all things technology – and Amazon’s innovations are no exceptions.

Robotics and Automation News reports on a wide range of trends in robotics – and points to Amazon bringing robotic fulfilment to the UK which could, “drastic efficiency improvements in its fulfilment process”. Continue reading

Christmas shopping has changed!

Christmas tree and gift boxes against burning fireplace

The way we shop for presents at Christmas has changed

Preparing for Peak in 2016

Gone are the days of promoting your wares in December and your customers buying up your perfectly packaged products at full price to put under the Christmas tree.

Now we have Black Friday! Black Friday started as a sales day before thanksgiving in the US and has gradually made it into the hearts of UK shoppers in the last few years. First there was chaos on Black Friday 2014 as people pushed and shoved their way into the shops and news reports everywhere- not necessarily in a good way. Continue reading

Thinking of Selling Online? Sneak Preview of our Top Ten Tips

Top Ten Tips to order fulfilment no.1Reap the benefits of selling online and see our new DIY Guide to Order Fulfilment – Top Ten Tips

Here’s a sneak preview with Top Tip No. 1:

Which products should you sell online?

If you have a range of goods that you ‘could’ sell online, list your most popular lines, then begin by selling the top 5. This will give you the chance to settle into online selling without having too juggle too many product lines – you can add a few more each week as you get more comfortable with the process.

See all the Top Ten Tips to DIY Order Fulfilment and all of DMC’s order fulfilment services

Is Anything Really Free?

Image for is anything free DMC blog article

With the continuing rise of internet shopping, currently growing at 12% a year, many companies are offering free returns for unwanted items.  As any business owner knows, there is no such thing as “free” in retail terms, and so it makes you wonder if a proportion of the returns cost has already been built into the price of the item (and every other item in the store). This would mean that anyone who purchases an item from the store is in fact paying a hidden premium to contribute to the cost of someone else having returned an item yet not bought anything.

It might be conceivable that a company could be gambling, say estimating that 60 or 70% of the goods will be kept. Whilst this might be true for high value items, such as washing machines, TVs, Laptops etc., the nature of purchases, such as online clothing, means that the customer may order 2 sizes of the same product and there is also a likelihood that they may just not like it.

Many retailers offer free returns. Could this be, as some online retail forums suggest, that the percentage of returns is lower from online purchases than purchases from bricks and mortar outlet? In a brick store, the showroom effect is more powerful, making the product look different to how it looks at home. Perhaps there really are less returns from online orders and less risk involved in making them ‘free’. We contacted a few of the biggest online retailers to see if they would shine any light on the debate; they declined to comment further than the standard information published on their websites.

Irrespective of company return policies and methods, it still stands that not everybody is going to return items. So why should those who don’t return items pay for those that do? Has the World gone mad or is this just consumer progress?

If you are a retailer and have any thoughts on this we’d love to have your comments below.

If you are in ecommerce and would like to know more about how DMC could help with fulfilment and returns please talktous@dmcdist.co.uk

Downtown Downturn, Online Upturn

Downtown downturn, online upturn

Robert Peston reported on the BBC news recently that the latest unemployment figures had gone down again, that the Bank of England had left interest rates unchanged at 0.5%, that inflation was around 2% and the economy was in recovery generally.

 

Peston was interviewing people on the street in a town in South Wales and asking them if they had personally seen any obvious improvement in their finances/job security and whether they were feeling more positive for the future.  Several respondents pointed to all the empty shops on the high street and said it was as a result of the recession.  But are our economy indicators outdated?

 

Internet shopping has risen exponentially by roughly 12% per year for the last 5 years, and in 2013, 72% of all adults bought goods or services online, up from 53% in 2008*. While younger age groups have traditionally embraced Internet shopping (92% of 25 to 34 year olds), there has been significant growth in the rate of online purchasing by those aged over 65. Over a third of those aged 65 and over bought online (36%) in 2013, more than double the 2008 estimate of 16%.

 

Should we assume that the above has nothing to do with the demise of 60% of the small high street shops?  A shop on the high street has a finite area from which to attract customers and also has to pay exorbitant business rates and staff wages, repairs, renewals etc. If you move a business online, you instantly have the whole of the UK and potentially the whole world as potential customers. Furthermore, if you outsource your fulfilment, you can even manage all your orders from the comfort of your spare room!

 

Using a fulfilment house means you pay only for what you use, in terms of storage space, pick-pack staff, order and inventory management and fork lift trucks. These methods can be very effective for the right product. Clothes were the most popular online purchase in 2013 and bought by 47% of all adults. If you see our blog on Drop Shops, you’ll also see how easy it could be for your customers to return items using warehouse fulfilment.

 

Considering the facts, it’s much more likely that the success of online business rather than the recession that has led to retailers leaving the high street. It’s comparable with the closure of Butchers, Bakers and Grocers shops when the Supermarkets rolled into town in the 50’s and 60’s.

 

We constantly reinvent ourselves and the way we do things with the rise of technology. It could soon be that a UK customer can order an item from a business in Australia and specify a 24 hour delivery  –  and get it. Better get in there first and keep the UK economy going if you ask me.

 

If you want to know more about how you can use warehousing and fulfilment for your UK business in the UK and abroad contact DMC or use the online calculator to see all of the options.