Overview

A Full-scale drop-shipping/retail arbitrage solution was developed for Grivet Outdoors that helped automate order processing by eliminating inventory risk, manual bottlenecks, preventing errors and establishing a smooth flow from suppliers to vendors, thus ensuring timely invoicing and payments. The system helped to sync inventory with the vendors, manage listings, generate orders, handle returns, and calculate the price by applying various formulas, generating purchase orders and much more. Having all the information on a single screen made it hassle-free for the company to make decisions about an order and help in getting a clear picture of their fulfillment.

Challenges and Goals

The client wanted to expand the product assortment, test new products without the risk of adding inventory overhead costs and maximize profits through reducing operational expenses. The client approached us with the concept of drop-shipping which can reprice the product, checks the stock availability, can handle refunds and cancellation and ultimately increase savings.

The client wanted to avoid general problems faced in retail industry

  • Inventory Risk: Retailers stock inventory in enormous amounts; even if inventory is sufficient and ensure a smooth business process flow there are the chances of overselling, underselling, inventory loss and much more.
  • Being out of stock and inability to accurately forecast demand: Due to improper system, retailer is not able to track the stocks as well the forecast demands and as a result, he is left with bad customer experience and negative reviews.
  • Continuously ordering products: Retailer may need to order the product continuously which result in the tedious work and unsatisfied customer service. “Right amount of inventory at the right time” is difficult to achieve if retailers continuously order the products.
  • Slow-moving inventory: Depending on the market condition, there are chances that some inventories are very slow-moving that result into slow inventory turnover ratio resulting into heavy loss.
  • Manual Work: Work done by using pen and paper opens the room for human errors. Inventory management errors across your operations may cost the retailers significantly in the long run
  • High over-head cost: Retailers generally have the burden of expenses including accounting fees, advertising, insurance, labor burden, legal fees and much more.
  • Excessively long lead times: Retailer may not be able to replenish their inventory and this makes it harder to introduce the new products as market demands.
  • Customer problems: Customer may be unsatisfied if retailer is not able to solve their problem. It may be anything like lack of service, defective items delivered, late deliveries, out of stock items etc.

To be very precise, he wished for a consolidated and automated system to handle entire order handling workflow; giving faster deliveries and more satisfied customers.

Approach

eSellerHub came up with the solution that can automate order management, real-time inventory control. The headless browser made it easier to place the order automatically from the supplier’s web to the vendor’s portal; routing all the necessary information with the click of button. Additionally, tracking number is automatically updated in sales channel; triggering the order workflows which helps in tracking supplier’s shipment. The system was integrated with panic button which provides alerts when items are over-sold; hence, this reduced the risk. The team at eSellerHub used Code-Igniter framework to improve user-experience, reduced time-to-market and to build a scalable architecture. The chat-bot was interfaced with Puppeteer (Node library) which provided a high-level API to control headless Chrome. The developed solution provided an easy way to get started without investing thousands of your own and helped to leverage the relationship between supplier and vendor offering a win-win strategy for both the parties. When managed correctly, it can form the foundation of your own successful online store.

What features does the developed system offer?

This system offers a complete set of features for the easy start and successful running of the business

  • Automates order: Manages your incoming drop-ships orders from your website or marketplace account easily and efficiently. Orders are placed automatically from suppliers web to the store, with all the required information at the click of a button
  • Pricing Automation: As the per the market competition, system reprices the product by applying advanced pricing markup formula and updates it on the market place.
  • Shipment Tracking: Shipment tracking number is directly integrated into your dashboard. When your supplier ships your order, your tracking numbers are automatically updated in your sales channel
  • PO Generation: Automatically generates purchase orders for all the items accepted by the seller
  • Multi-channel supplier: Automatically routes your orders to the appropriate suppliers based on your products SKUs
  • Generates invoices and payment receipts: Generates customer invoices with a single click and sync them directly to the accounting platform for a smoother payment and invoicing process
  • Handle returns: Generate order shipment returns in a click of button and create customer refunds at the same time. This helps to make smarter business decision
  • Search and Import: Using different integrated filters, it is easy to find desired products on the supplier’s website to add to your website.
  • All under one roof: Helps in getting order information at a glance for easier order management. Everything on a single window helps to get the detailed insights and clear picture of your fulfillment

What benefits the client got by developing this system?

  • Decreased inventory carrying cost and risk
  • Eliminated manual processes
  • Reduced error and labor costs
  • Provided scalability
  • Streamlined supplier’s and vendor’s process
  • Increased cash-flow
  • Enables expansion into new market
  • Virtually unlimited inventory
  • Saved time
  • Facilitated to the testing of new products
  • Is free to operate his business from anywhere

Result

The developed system provided a unique solution to resolve all the problems and reduced human efforts and errors. Client is able to provide wide array of products with no risk of carrying inventory and additional cost, which enabled him to scale up the products quickly and rapidly respond to the evolving purchasing demands of today’s customer. He can sell new items or remove old ones from their website easily without stressing about excess leftover inventory. Information is available fast, providing him with real-time visibility of the order details and statuses to keep steps in fulfillment process. The developed system helped the client to set up a profitable drop shipping business with small starting capital. Now we have a very happy client.

Technical Excellence

Database: MySQL

Server side scripting language: CodeIgniter, PHP, Node.js

Web Server- Apache

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