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Success factors of an efficient eCommerce supply chain

Many years ago, CEO of LNConsult Thomas Mayr and his team had several consulting assignments in markets, where the eCommerce business boomed while in Europe there were only some early adopters creating their eCommerce business. In an interview, Thomas Mayr reveals what is important in terms of the supply chain management to develop a successful eCommerce business.

"When talking about the success factors of eCommerce, many articles are limited to the structure of an online shop, design and layout, product content, performance marketing, user experience and the customer journey. The really challenging part of eCommerce, however, lies behind the front line of the shop."

What does the supply chain structure have to look like in order to be able to process eCommerce not only in the front end, but above all in the invisible back end?

Thomas Mayr: "Our global supply chain management consultants know exactly how demanding the supply chain management of a large eCommerce retailer is. LNConsult advised companies in countries that were pioneers in the eCommerce business at an early stage. The requirements for procurement, storage, order processing, logistics, shipments, reverse processing etc. are enormous for assortments with several thousand articles. A smooth process management is crucial for resource planning and optimization, customer satisfaction and, in general, for competitiveness. "

Which factors provide information about eCommerce readiness?

Thomas Mayr: "The factors are diverse and, as always, depend on the individual business model. It becomes especially exciting when there is a combination of brick-and-mortar and online commerce and you first of all have to clarify whether both channels should grow or if the business should shift from brick-and-mortar to eCommerce. Some factors that are important for our consultants in any case are the following:

  • Growth figures and product range
  • Overall eCommerce strategy (the goals that the company wants to achieve with its eCommerce business)
  • Customer service level (is logistics able to keep the promises made to the customer)
  • Product availability (own warehouse or a smart supply chain that enables manufacturers or intermediaries to send goods directly to customers on my behalf)
  • Processing time of orders (duration from eCommerce order to delivery)
  • Master data for volume-optimized dispatch (efficiency in transport, logistics and also increased environmental awareness)
  • Cost transparency along the entire eCommerce supply chain (good service does not have to be for free)
  • The current logistical infrastructure (location, warehouse equipment, IT infrastructure, human resources ...)

There currently exist more than 24 million online shops worldwide - some of the top-selling eCommerce retailers have their origins in Asia. LNConsult was also on site as a supply chain management consultant in India and Russia from the very beginning to support the "biggest players" in setting up and optimizing their eCommerce supply chain. Countries like India prepared their supply chains for eCommerce at an early stage and are now benefiting from being some steps ahead their competitors.

The know-how that LNConsult has built up with and in these companies helps customers worldwide to be and remain competitive in the aggressive eCommerce market.

In our consulting references you will find many examples for successful eCommerce projects (eg. Utkonos, Landmark, Trent/Westside, Rozetka or Intersport).

Thomas Mayr, CEO LNConsult