Every company has some valuable goals. You can’t achieve inventory overnight. The correct process to manage it is to safeguard it, store it and manage it. And all the above cost a good sum of money to carry on with these processes. The cost is comparatively steep if the inventory of your company is mismanaged. It is true that supply chain managers are especially hungry for cost-saving innovations in the process of inventory management. The two factors that add pressure to the process of supply chain management are the global supply chain and the rising customer demands. But having said that, business owners should pay attention to the inventory management trends.
Ignoring new trends will only make your company fall behind everyone in the market, leading to your competitors thriving with better processes, lower operating costs as well increased customers or clients.
To stay in touch with inventory management trends, it is important to do a bit of reading, researching, and understanding the topic to its core. Then consider how prepared your company is to take advantage of exciting new tools.
To give you all a complete understanding of how to find out newer ways in inventory management, here are 6 inventory management trends retailers should be aware off.
Trend #1: Streamlined Management of Returned Inventory
Consumers return roughly 20-30% of the goods they buy online while they only return 8.89% of goods bought at brick-and-mortar stores. Add this to the rising popularity of online shopping and the increasing number of individual packages rather than bulk packages, and you have a growing inventory management nightmare.
It is a very difficult reality that one can’t ignore. About 49% of retailers provide a free shipping service. And if consumers find that you are not offering the above-stated amount, 79% automatically skip choosing online stores for any kind of shopping.
But here, the question arises, where can the retailers manage the increasing inundation of return cost?
A strong warehouse management system is the solution to handle this. The working of the warehouse management system is much more than the functioning of workers pick, pack, and ship. The warehouse management must also help you manage returned inventory accordingly.
Trend #2: Free Shipping Service
After the pandemic, one important question many retailers are going to ask is ‘How will the world pandemic of Covid-19 impact customers’ demand’’?
Retailers are looking to use big data, demand forecasting powered by machine learning. They choose to do this for optimizing customer and supplier relationship management, logistics and manufacturing processes, and running smart marketing campaigns. On the other hand, compared to the traditional forecasting methods, machine learning approaches are more adaptable to change and faster to implement. By optimizing the demand forecasting system with NLP and cascade models, short-term POS Data, and the recent data from the external resources, enhancing the demand forecast accurately.
Trend #3: Augmented Shopping
100 million customers expected to use augmented reality in their shopping experiences. But due to the isolation caused for the covid-19 quarantine, there is an increase in the demand for virtual fighting room systems. Also, with the try-before-you-buy approach, augmented shopping attracts customers by allowing them to interact with the products online.
Trend #4: Data Science-Based Personal Interaction
In today’s world of personalization tools, Data Science and machine learning technologies have made immense progress. DS and engines can make personal recommendations to the customers even before they know what they want.
Data Science and machine learning technologies have made great progress in today’s personalization tools. DS and ML-powered engines can make personal recommendations to customers before they know what they want themselves.
The recommended engines use engines incentive based on consumer desires and needs. By applying machine learning methods, the recommendations collected information about customers and clients to develop shopping profiles. It is after that the system trailers calls to action to specific users and speeds the buying expense along.
The In-store options are slowly and steadily catching up with the online. As well as the app-based ones quickly.,The NPL- Driven chatbots are getting advanced day by day and deliver a personal experience. Outside the retail area, chatbots are expected to be the biggest word in customer service, offering deals and recommendations, providing easy navigation, and well tracking orders.
Trend #5: Stores without staff and absence of the cashier
Social distancing is the most common way to prevent coronavirus. Hence cashier-less and staff-free stores are expected to redefine the retail landscape. A general survey revealed that 87% of customers are preferring to choose stores with contactless and self-checkout options. Tools that will allow this transformation are RFID tags, computer vision systems, machine learning, IoT devices, and facial recognition.
Trend #6: Voice Commerce
The process of artificial intelligence and NLP are dynamically progressing year by year. New devices that have made our life even easier are Alexa and other Google Home Assistant. The need of using any screen-based app can be depleted to interact with the audience. These smart applications can understand your speech as well as voice.
In the retail sector and other e-commerce industries, voice-assisted technologies help to make sales through voice recognition technology. The new term of this process is “voice-commerce”
Conclusion: The importance of knowing the trends, for the retailers, is to stand out from their competitors in the market. When a company is touching upon the newer trends, it connects with the audience much more. The engagement of the clients is higher, hence every retailer should know the latest inventory trends.