Why Your Business Should Be Integrating a TMS

integrating a TMS

Why integrating a TMS is best for your

business 

When offered shipping software, some business owners are skeptical. Why fix something that isn’t broken? The harsh reality is that while legacy solutions may still work, for now, times are quickly changing. As buyers’ expectations change and businesses continue to grow, legacy solutions are quickly becoming outdated and inadequate to handle the changes. Integrating a TMS can help your business meet these expectations and grow your bottom line.

integrating a TMS

While there are many transportation management systems (TMS) out there, there are four valuable components that all shipping solutions should be able to offer their customer:

1. Automation

Order fulfillment can be a lengthy and expensive process. In order for businesses to ship a package, they must go through multiple steps: pick the correct box, carrier, shipment type, print labels, schedule pickups, etc. While this may be fine for small orders, once shipping volumes begin to increase, businesses can no longer afford to manually engage in such a tedious process for each shipment.

By leveraging a transportation management system, order fulfillment and management no longer have to be roadblocks. In addition to optimizing each step of the shipping process, having an automated system means fewer errors, manual work and time spent on shipping packages.

By streamlining the supply chain, business owners are able to fulfill orders faster and more cost-efficiently, allowing for higher profit margins and higher customer satisfaction.

2. Certainty

With legacy solutions, business owners are often left guessing and hoping that they made the right decision for their shipment. In contrast, shipping solutions give business owners control over their shipments. Out goes estimation and in comes predictable margins and certainty.

For instance, multi-carrier rating software automatically calculates and compares the shipping rates from various carriers to show owners the most cost-efficient options, all with the click of a button. On the other hand, packing optimization software is able to calculate the optimal box size based on the actual items that make up each order, regardless of how uniquely shaped or fragile an item is.

Through the use of such services, business owners are able to have full cost-transparency on their shipments, allowing for greater cost-visibility for the customer.  This results in lower shopping cart abandonment rates and higher customer satisfaction. Through such solutions, business owners no longer have to base their decisions off of guesswork and can continue to focus on what matters: growing their business.

integrating a TMS

3. Convenience

To put it simply, integrating a TMS makes life easier by reducing the manual work you need to put in for each shipment.

For example, with a platform like ShipHawk that offers a unified tracking system, businesses are able to aggregate all of their carriers’ tracking updates into one platform. With real-time updates, businesses no longer have to constantly contact several carriers at a time for customer tracking updates, and customers no longer have to keep visiting third party sites (or picking up the phone to call customer service) to keep track of their packages.

integrating a TMS

Furthermore, many shipping software API’s offer auto-generated shipping labels and bills of lading for user convenience. The best transportation management systems aim to cut out the middle-man (third party websites, customer service reps, etc.) and simplify the customer’s shipping experience with proactive order updates.

4. Growth

Most importantly, transportation management systems gives your business the bandwidth to grow and take advantage of the opportunities created through features such as automation. In addition to the reduction of shipping costs, shipping software can help businesses streamline their growth by offering data and analytics tools.

With a TMS like ShipHawk, businesses gain access to margin analysis, customer profitability, shipping trends, and reconciliation. By being able to leverage such data, businesses can allocate resources to proper areas and save thousands of dollars in addition to the shipping costs already saved.

Overall, there are many benefits that come with utilizing a transportation management system. Whether your company wants a more transparent tracking system, a foolproof comparison of carriers and packaging options, or simply to stop losing profit margins to high shipping costs, integrating a TMS software can be a great solution to the problem.

Although each company will have specific needs, if a shipping solution can provide these four areas of value, it might be worth taking a closer look.

Why Businesses Should Be Rate Shopping

rate shopping

Why Businesses Should Be Rate Shopping

Shipping can often be an overwhelming process. With so many different types of carriers, rates, services and regulations, it’s easy to understand why many customers opt to choose the first carrier that comes to sight without really doing the research to find the best rate. While it may be more time efficient to settle with the first adequate carrier, a more cost-efficient way to ship packages is through rate shopping.

Rate shopping is the process of comparing different carriers– such as UPS, FedEx and USPS–to find the cheapest shipping rate for the same delivery experience. This means that instead of immediately choosing one carrier, you research several different carriers, delivery formats and service levels to find the lowest rate that still delivers the package by the expected delivery date. Shipping-Software-for-Executives_Data-Driven-Decision-MakingRates are dependent on various characteristics, such as dim weight, fuel charge, residential surcharges, freight class, and unit types, all of which carriers charge different prices for. By strategically researching and prioritizing these components, customers can avoid high margin loss when they pick the cheapest possible delivery service. In fact, rate shopping has been accredited to reducing shipping costs by up to 30%. In addition to increasing company profit, money saved in shipping relations can also increase customer acquisition rates. By providing the cheapest shipping rates, businesses are better able to maintain a competitive edge through marketing shipping, such as offering free shipping to increase eCommerce sales.

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Automate Shipping Strategies with a Transportation Management System

automate shipping strategies

Automate Shipping Strategies with a Transportation Management System

customer demands free returnsAs online shopping rises in popularity, it’s now more important than ever for eCommerce stores to automate shipping strategies with a transportation management system.(TMS). Consumers are growing accustomed to the fast, free, and reliable shipping services that they receive from companies like Amazon Prime, and are expecting the same caliber of efficiency from every online store that they purchase from. Nothing screams “I’m never shopping here again” like a missing package or one that takes ages for a customer to receive.

Some of the biggest pains companies experience when trying to find the best shipping solutions are reducing their shipping costs on diverse parcel and enhancing the post-purchase customer experience. Nowadays, these issues are difficult to solve unless businesses invest in SaaS shipping solutions. Platforms that optimize shipping strategies give companies a competitive advantage by reducing costs, increasing profit margins and minimizing stress through logistics automation and intelligence. An example of a transportation management system that helps businesses achieve these goals is ShipHawk.

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Product SKUs: Product Update – April 2016

Product Update - August 2017

Product SKUs: Import, Export Enrich, and Optimize

Product Update – April 2016

This month, we released the Products tab (and APIs) on ShipHawk. With our Products tools, you can upload SKU data into ShipHawk and leverage this information throughout the platform to streamline your pre- and post- order workflows.

Historically, you had to manage this information outside of the platform; now, ShipHawk can be your central source of truth for all shipping related product information – so you can leverage data you already have on hand and, together, we can enrich your products.

With Products, you can: 

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Import products from eCommerce platforms like Shopify and Magento

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Handle Products that need to be shipped in more than one box (ex. “3 pc. sectional sofa”)

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Enrich critical product specific shipping data:

      -Shipping dimensions (to avoid costly dimensional weight                    issues)

      -Shipping weight

      -Freight class

      -NMFC codes

      -Country of manufacture

      -Harmonization codes

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Associate Products with specific originating locations (warehouses, distributors, individual sellers, etc.)

Learn more about ShipHawk’s TMS can do here.