Retailers in e-commerce, omnichannel or even B2B and B2C wholesale rely on high availability of their automation solutions to meet customer expectations such as same-day or next-day delivery. In addition to availability, the focus is on high, scalable performance in order to be able to deliver at short notice even during peak seasons such as Black Friday. In addition to performance, this also calls for high storage capacity. In addition, there is demand for value-added services (often with a one-piece flow process) such as the customisation of products or special packaging processes. Similarly, intelligent returns management constitutes an important component of the operational efficiency of a retail company's logistics.
Omnichannel Fulfillment is characterised by huge variations in the size of orders. On the one hand, orders are picked for e-commerce, which typically comprise a few items. On the other hand, bulk buyers, such as the company's own branches, have to be kept supplied with the goods they need. Here, the order quantities are significantly larger. In addition, retail outlets wish to be supplied in such a way that the use of local resources is kept as low as possible. It is crucial to be able to process the different types of orders in a cost-optimised way and to optimise the customer journey at all times. Ideally, you connect the business of your retail outlets with e-commerce through the right omnichannel logistics solution.
INTERSPORT is the Number One sports retailer and it supplies over 1,000 retailers worldwide. With the help of an omnichannel platform, the company is delivering its own product ranges with growing success. Modernisation of the logistical processes was urgently required because storage space was scarce and software was outdated.
This process transparency is created by using the latest software technologies in conjunction with automation of their intralogistics. In this way, they maintain an overview of the warehousing and performance of the distribution logistics at all times. At the same time, they increase process quality, repeatability and achieve shorter throughput times with a lower error rate, because order accuracy is a decisive competitive factor. Track & Trace supports the digitalised customer journey. Correct master data form the basis here, as does a high level of inventory accuracy.
Digital processes are a real hobby-horse for those in e-commerce. This needs to be extended to intralogistics to provide your customers with a perfect shopping experience. Automation helps you meet customer expectations for short delivery lead times, even at peak periods. The processing of returns can be greatly shortened through automation. At the same time, you tackle the problem of a shortage of labour. Take advantage of the high stock density that automation solutions bring and enjoy the benefit of being able to control and adjust your stocks even at times of uncertainty. Our solutions can start small and can then expand as you grow.
Together with GEBHARDT Fördertechnik from Sinsheim, the football outfitter and sporting goods retailer 11teamsports completely reorganised their logistics at the new headquarters in Satteldorf in February. With the installation of a high-performance shuttle warehouse and the implementation of the “goods-to-man” principle, the company is well equipped for the growing challenges of the omni-channel business. As a result, 11teamsports is ideally equipped for the growing dynamics of the multi-channel business and can process both B2B / branch orders from the automatic mini-load warehouse, as well as B2C and individual orders from the online shop.
Retailers increasingly have to face the challenge of different distribution channels. Automated storage and order picking systems enable high delivery performance and optimum utilisation of space. The individual process steps in the warehouse must be linked together in the best possible way with the appropriate material flow technology. Automated storage and picking systems must also bring with them the necessary flexibility to react effectively to future changes in the market environment. Retailers have always exhibited high price pressure and a competitive environment with high price pressure, in which they can only survive with efficient intralogistics.
It is crucial for wholesalers to maintain their own competitiveness, even in the face of new competitors, without losing their own identity and orientation. As prices come under increasing pressure from online platforms, the company's own processes must be highly efficient. The core here is logistics, which is increasingly becoming the focus of customers who transfer their expectations from private purchases to the B2B sector and who expect a high level of service. Wholesalers face a variety of challenges such as supplying ever larger geographical regions, labour shortages, customer demands for fast delivery times for big product ranges, inventory management between branch and head office, as well as changing distribution and logistics strategies of manufacturers.
The GEBHARDT Intralogistics Group established a state-of-the-art central warehouse for REISSER, a renowned specialist retailer for bathroom equipment, installation and heating technology at its Böblingen head office location to enhance the delivery capability of all its branches and the various warehouses. The goal was to implement a sustainable intralogistics solution that would provide optimum support to the company in its further growth, especially as a partner between industry and trade.
Reduce absenteeism and address the challenges of an ageing population (and workforce) and skills shortages. In e-commerce in particular, workplace ergonomics have a direct impact on the work results of their employees due to the high performance requirements. A branch-friendly delivery relieves the workload of your on-site staff and creates the necessary freedom to take care of the customers in the best possible way.
For trade, robust supply chains are crucial. This includes efficient handling of intralogistics, which brings automation into focus. This automation must be scalable and flexible in order to respond to future changes in markets and buying behaviour. Logistics must also support new distribution channels as a backbone and be prepared for omnichannel or multichannel requirements. The number of deliveries to branches is increasing, whereas the number of items per delivery is decreasing. This is another way of responding to the development of demand in a more targeted manner. A shortage of labour, both in logistics and in the branches, reinforces the trend towards automation, which also simplifies branch-oriented supply.
The Swedish retail company Clas Ohlson strives to beautify its customers’ homes by offering a wide range of smart, simple, and practical products and solutions at attractive prices. In the company’s distribution centre, an automated consolidation area has been implemented, and the sorting and packaging process has also been automated. As a result, up to 10,500 e-commerce orders can now be processed daily. The GEBHARDT solution has provided Clas Ohlson with an effective and scalable system, enabling the company to master the increasing e-commerce orders.
Last but not least, with automation you are also investing in sustainability and resource conservation, while at the same time meeting high requirements for economic efficiency and investment security. Automation of logistics leads to a reduction in labour costs over decades of plant operation and is the key to high efficiency even in countries with high unit labour costs.
GEBHARDT References, Trade
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