Hitting "Pause" for Drop Ship Inventory Disruptions
By: Azad Sadr
Many warehouses are cutting back or closing operations without advanced warning due to the Covid-19 outbreak. These sudden closures are leading to all sorts of challenges as retailers try to navigate the resulting assortment gaps, unfulfilled orders, lost sales, and opportunity costs. Customer-experience nightmares are occurring as orders for once in-stock items have to be cancelled.
To deal with unexpected warehouse closures, every drop ship program needs a literal, instantaneous “pause” button. A paused trading partner should no longer receive orders and their entire assortment should automatically be removed from your ecommerce site (even as their integration remains intact). The key to doing this right is either using a platform that allows you to hit “pause” on connections or building out such a feature in your API backend.
Some manner of backend “pause” feature allows you to react in real time to unexpected inventory changes. You’ll be able to proactively prevent customers from ordering recently-unavailable items, without losing time coordinating with your data platform’s customer support team. This will go a long way in preventing unnecessary cancellations and making sure your ecommerce assortment remains up-to-date even as inventory access changes from one moment to the next.
Here’s to keeping your drop ship supply chain as agile as possible!