By Bill Melo
Thankfully for American commerce, “retail therapy” is still very much a viable concept for many. And as our doctors would surely agree, is infinitely better than consuming a pint of ice cream while watching TV.
For many of us, retail therapy still means going to our favorite retailer or shopping outlet while running up our credit cards buying the latest apparel, maybe a road bike or perhaps going completely off the rails by making an offer on a dream home.
With retail e-commerce continuing to trend upward – generating $211 billion in 2013, which is a 13 percent year-over-year increase, according to comScore – many individuals succumbing to one of America’s favorite pastimes doesn’t require leaving the comfort of one’s living room.
Though this is certainly great news for e-commerce retailers – the notable ones, which we can all tick off at the drop of a hat, also have physical locations – these businesses face a barrage of challenges. Perhaps the costliest one being logistics.
Retailers are beginning to understand that logistics operations for online e-commerce are far more complex than similar support within retail outlets. What are the reasons?
The sheer volume of orders increases exponentially while the number of items shipped is smaller. Retailers additionally face fulfilling a massive number of orders in a highly precise manner while meeting a tighter shipping schedule to boot.
While seemingly simplistic, the pack-and-ship process continues to thrive, but fraught with unnecessary costs and ecologically poor practices. Since seemingly from the dawn of commerce, retailers have had to print a separate shipping label and packing slip, which aside from being inefficient is ripe for processing errors (meaning you could get a knitting needle and wool rather than the new pair of aviator sunglasses you ordered).
With the adoption of double-sided 2ST direct thermal technology for simultaneous printing on the front and back of a label, retailers may completely streamline – while demonstrating their environmental commitment – the pack-and-ship process. Also, by concurrently printing both a shipping label and packing slip, the potential for processing errors is virtually eliminated.
To learn more about products featuring such leading-edge technology to help lower your company’s total cost of operation or TCO, please visit our site today.