Best Cybersecurity Tips to Secure Your ECommerce Store!

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ECommerce store article and permission to publish here provided by Laura Jones.

The world of ecommerce is a minefield, and cybersecurity should be at the forefront of your mind when you’re designing or setting up an online store. But, here’s the snag; with so many cybersecurity tips and tricks to learn, it’s hard to know where to start. 

So, this blog post will go over some best practices for securing that all-important data to prevent any devastating security breaches down the line through less than savory methods such as hacking, leading to considerable revenue losses.

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What is Geofencing? And How Does it Work?

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Geofencing article, and permission to publish here, provided by Olivia Andres at Radar.

Geofencing is a buzzy mobile app capability that’s been around for at least a decade; however, developers are only now seeing the full potential of geofencing for building a great user-first experience.

While geofencing received some attention in relation to user privacy, new tools are considering how geofencing can better surprise and delight customers – and in the future, radically change the way companies deliver location-based experiences. 

From sending a tailored promotion when a customer enters a retail store to powering order-ahead food delivery, geofencing plays a key role in making mobile apps contextually aware. How does geofencing work, and how can mobile app developers better deploy this technology?

Here’s what you need to know about geofencing. 

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Value Stream Mapping the Future State Process!

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Unchaining Change Leadership

We had completed value stream mapping the current state processes across some very significant business processes in the company.  It took a fair amount of time even though we had the active involvement of subject matter experts and leaders from every functional organization.

When all was said and done the current state involved hundreds of process steps, almost 200 pain points, and dozens of iterative, repetitive loops.  The company was just being introduced to Lean process improvement techniques.  And as challenging as it was to reach a common understanding of what the current processes were the difficult part was about to start.

How were we going to define and map the Future State process?

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Is AliExpress Safe? A Basic Guide for Importers!

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AliExpress article and permission to publish here provided by Dave Chadha.

You may have heard of the e-commerce platform AliExpress. If you haven’t, Alibaba, which is owned by Jack Ma, is the parent company of AliExpress.

The platform has risen enormously in recent years, and so has people’s skepticism, questioning the possible risks of buying from AliExpress

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How The Evolution of E-Commerce Has Changed Customer Shipping Expectations !

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Customer shipping expectations article and permission to publish here provided by Connor Dedi.

The evolution of e-commerce has paved the way for a new standard of shopping. Especially with COVID-19 restrictions still being enforced around the world, shopping online has truly become both the safest and most convenient option for many around the world.

This is in part due to the amount of information that prospective customers can research about the products they’re interested in prior to purchasing them. One Google search of a particular product allows customers the ability to review its unique features and capabilities, price check amongst similar competing products, read customer reviews, and even find a way to bargain through the use of online coupons before deciding which product to ultimately purchase.

Online retail has become an enormous industry in the past few years. In 2019 alone, e-tail commerce totaled more than $3.5 trillion globally, with more than 1.92 billion people shopping online for products and services. 

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The Complexities of Being a Small Retailer! (Infographic)

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Small retailer article and infographic provided by, and permission to publish here provided by, Patrick Thuot at storetraffic.com.

The advent of the internet and the growth of multiple chain stores means that small and independent retailers now face a number of challenges to their survival.

However, it’s not all bad news. Over the past five years, the small specialty retail store sector in the US have grown by 1% to reach revenue of $41 billion in 2018.

So, it’s clear that there is plenty of opportunity to not just survive but thrive.

This infographic from Storetraffic looks at some of the complexities of being an independent retailer and offers a comprehensive survival guide for 2019. 

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The Amazing Supply Chain of Your Morning Coffee!

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Coffee article written by Julia Severins and originally published on http://allthingssupplychain.com  .  Permission to publish provided by David Weaver.

Even though modern coffee machines offer an attractive variety of caffeinated drinks like cappuccino or latte macchiato, for me it is a simple cup of black coffee that helps kick-start my productivity when the clock strikes 8 am.

This “kick-start”, or boost aspect of coffee was randomly discovered between the sixth and the ninth century. A widespread tale sets the scene in the kingdom of Kaffa, in Abyssinia – which today is Ethiopia – where a shepherd one day observed that his sheep were unusually cheerful after eating white blossoms and red cherries from a previously unknown plant. Further, it is said that the shepherd told monks from the nearby monastery about his new discovery, but they tagged the beans as “Devil´s work” and hurled them into a fire. The delicious smell that rose from the pit of the fire brought on the idea of roasting the beans.

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How to Choose the Right E-Commerce Business Model!

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E-Commerce business model article and permission to publish here provided by Claire Glassman.

The shift from offline retail to online businesses is an unstoppable trend. E-commerce has arrived decades ago, and its relevance now booms in the current advancement of technology. 

Now, more and more entrepreneurs are building and starting their e-commerce businesses. For your e-commerce business to have a greater chance of success, you need to think long and hard about what E-Commerce business model you’re going to pursue. 

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The Future of E-Commerce! (Infographic)

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Future of E-Commerce article created for Supply Chain Game Changer by Josh Wardini.  Infographic originally published by Subscriptionly at https://subscriptionly.net

Thanks to digital technology we can carry out commercial transactions online. We can buy and sell items or services, pay bills, make orders, and so much more.

Online enterprises are heavily relying on this commodity. This is why we have numerous online businesses nowadays.

The infographic below from Subscriptionly will inform you about the current and future tech trends that will influence the ecommerce sector. Some of the main trends are as follows.

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The Benefits of Providing Tracking Information to Customers!

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Tracking information article originally published by, and permission to publish here provided by, Jake Smith at https://www.gopeople.com.au

Online shopping has become an integral part of many consumers’ lives. The increased volume of parcels shows that this new way of acquiring goods and services is here to stay.

While a lot of packages are successfully delivered, sometimes, they can get misplaced, damaged, and in worst cases, lost. For these reasons, many customers will want to know the exact location and status of the items they ordered to ensure that it will safely arrive in their homes.

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4 Route Planning Trends and Innovations!

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Route planning trends article and permission to publish here provided by Cristina Par.

Online shopping has been around for a while now. However, the largest shift in consumer inclination towards online shopping came with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Unfortunately, most businesses had not adequately planned for such a scenario which resulted in massive glitches in logistics.

According to experts, the demand for last-mile delivery is expected to grow by 78 percent globally by 2030.

Therefore, every business seeking to survive this consumer behavior change must keep up with emerging trends in the industry. 

Here are some route planning trends and innovations that you may want to consider in 2022 and beyond.

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Seasoned Leadership in Action™! An Interview with Grant Chapman, President at Kroeger!

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Unchaining Change Leadership

At Supply Chain Game Changer we believe in sharing experiences and expertise from people in every industry and from across the globe.  As such we have introduced our “Seasoned Leadership in Action™” Interview series. This interview is with Grant Chapman, President at Kroeger Inc.

Kroeger is a wholesale distributor of toy, games, puzzles, gift and hobby servicing the Canadian retail and e-tail retailers. Kroeger has exclusive distribution of such brands as Rubik’s Cube, Toy State, Winning Moves Games, Endless Games, Ceaco Puzzles, WoodWick Candles, , Silly String, and other spectacular brands.

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7 Reasons to Select a Cloud-Based POS System!

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Unchaining Change Leadership

Cloud-based POS system article and permission to publish here provided by Ross Smith.

Are you using a cloud-based POS (point of sale) system yet? If not, then you are losing out on some distinct advantages that these systems offer. 

A cloud-based POS system uses a remote server to operate. Your data is stored in a cloud and can be accessed remotely, as well as on-site. 

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The Downside of Free Returns and Exchanges!

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Returns article originally published at https://www.bringg.com and permission to publish here provided by Raanan Cohen.

A new survey from Brightpearl found that 42 percent of U.S. retailers say they have seen an increase in the number of “serial returners” over the last 12 months.

What’s more, 61 percent of the retailers surveyed said they would ban serial returners.

This is an interesting change in an industry that has put so much emphasis on facilitating free returns and exchanges.

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Which is Better? Amazon FBA or 3PL?

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Amazon FBA article by Dona Dimaculangan of 3P Logistics at https://www.3p-logistics.co.uk/.

E-commerce is defined as the buying and selling of products or services exclusively through electronic channels. If you’ve made an online purchase through eBay, Shopify, Amazon, and other platforms, then you have made your purchase via an e-commerce site.  More and more people spend their time browsing on the internet and the more likely they are to buy stuff online.

Admittedly, the e-commerce industry is booming. Retail e-commerce sales in the United States are projected to grow at a fast pace in the coming years, going from 322.17 billion U.S. dollars in 2016 to just over 485 billion US dollars in 2021.

Why You Need Order Fulfillment Services

 If you’re looking for a business that will eventually get you out of your 9-5 job, or looking to expand your existing business, having an online presence and web-based store could fulfill this goal. For beginners in the e-commerce trade, what do you need to do to get more sales, with a lot of online businesses competing for customers’ attention?

Amazon

Customers want products that will give the best bang for their buck with speedy delivery, and good after-sales support. Here’s where the different companies offering order fulfillment services come in.

What is an Order Fulfillment Service?

 Order fulfillment is defined as the steps involved in receiving, processing and delivering orders to end customers. A fulfillment service is defined as a third-party company that provides these order fulfillment steps on behalf of another party, such as an online seller.

Let’s look at the pros and cons of using either Amazon FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) or a 3PL for your fulfillment needs.

Fulfillment By Amazon

 FBA, or Fulfillment By Amazon is a business model wherein e-commerce sellers on the Amazon Marketplace, big or small, can have their products stored in any of Amazon’s giant warehouses, pack and deliver them to customers, handle customer support, and returns.

FBA Pros
Expertise and Reach

 Amazon has one of the most advanced e-commerce fulfillment service in the world, can help you scale-up or grow your business and as of the last measured period, the source estimated 90 million paying Amazon Prime subscribers in the United States, up from 63 million in June during the previous year.

Amazon Prime customers are eligible for 2-Day Shipping, Free Shipping and other benefits. If you sign up your products for Amazon Prime, your products are eligible for free shipping, too.

Customer Service and Returns

FBA handles customer service and returns. Listings are displayed with the Prime logo, so customers know that Amazon handles packing, delivery, customer service, and returns.

They handle the fulfillment services side of the business and saves your time, so you can focus on the other aspects of your business.

Multi-Channel Fulfillment

With Multi-Channel Fulfillment, you can fulfill orders from other sales channels using your inventory stored in Amazon order fulfillment centers. Single-source your inventory to streamline your fulfillment operations, manage your inventory through an online user interface and can direct Amazon to return your inventory in e-commerce fulfillment centers at any time.

Cons of using FBA
Customization

Little to no order customization. Sellers must comply with existing Amazon .processes.

Branding

Items are shipped in Amazon boxes. Sellers can ship in generic boxes which may cost extra.

Warehouse Pricing

Storage fees are generally higher compared to 3PLs and usually rise during holidays.

Higher order handling fees for non-Amazon orders.

Communication

Solutions are based in standard processes which may pose little opportunity for dialogue.

Conflict of interest

The fact that Amazon may actually be a competitor to the seller. Amazon is in the business of selling, they just happen to offer shipping services. For Amazon, it’s free product and market research, and they’re making money off you.

Third Party Logistics (3PL / TPL)

Third–party logistics in logistics and supply chain management is a company’s use of third party businesses to outsource elements of the company’s order fulfillment services.

Pros of Using 3PL
Customization

Boxes/bags and all internal packaging are customized to a specific brand. Processes are adapted to your business’ operation and specification.

Warehouse Costing

Attractive storage costs that is variable. Customer pays storage space on a given month. Some 3PLs even offer free warehouse storage for a limited time.

Communication

Has onboarding processes, frequent communication before and after product launch. Collaborative approach is encouraged.

B2B (Business to Business)

Certain 3PLs can handle both B2B and B2C (Business to Consumer) fulfillment, resulting in one e-commerce fulfillment partner for all sales channels.

Cons of Using 3PL
Finding a Trustworthy 3PL company takes time.

Not all 3PL providers are created equal. It takes time to find a good company to work with from the beginning. Once you find someone you can trust, you can rest assured that your goods are being properly cared for. The initial search could be stressful but it will all be worth it once you find a reliable 3PL company.

Bad Service Reflects on Your Company

An inefficient 3PL provider could make your company look bad. Your customers do not care who is in charge of getting the product to them. All they care about is the end result. It is very important to look for a good distribution center early on to avoid customer-satisfaction issues in the future.

Amazon FBA or 3PL in Conclusion

Order Fulfillment Services are a crucial part of your business and a major factor in determining its success or failure. Whether you entrust your fulfillment services to FBA or a 3PL, there is a greater chance that you will be in good hands – these are fulfillment experts, after all.  The key difference is you as the owner,  – what do you want for your brand and what kind of customer experience you want to give to your consumers.

If you are happy to use Amazon’s existing system and tap into their wide customer reach, FBA may be a perfect fit for your company.  If, however, you would like more control over your order fulfillment services, partnering with a 3PL could be the best solution. Make sure your order fulfillment service provider is experienced with the type of operations you need before you entrust them with your reputation.

Originally written for Supply Chain Game Changer and published on March 8, 2018.