Blog, Tips

5 Order Fulfillment Tips for Rental Businesses

5 Order Fulfillment Tips for Rental Businesses

If you own a rental equipment business – or are considering starting one – you’ve probably thought about warehousing, shipping, and order fulfillment. In this article, we’ll discuss 5 tips for order fulfillment in the rental industry.

What is “order fulfillment”?

Order fulfillment is an inventory method companies – including rental businesses – follow receive orders and process goods to deliver to customers quickly and efficiently. Impressive order fulfillment involves processing a rental order and ensuring the product you’re renting meets all the customer’s needs. This process typically starts when a customer places a rental order and ends once you successfully deliver that order to them and they’re satisfied with it.

Tip 1: Understand the end-to-end process

Before you start order fulfillment, be sure you’ve mapped out the entire process from beginning to end. The process involves more than just shipping rental products to their destinations. It’s also a complex e-commerce system that – above all – targets customer satisfaction. By conceptualizing the process from start to finish, you’ll leave nothing in your order fulfillment process to chance.

Tip 2: Communicate each step with your customers

You know what’s annoying? Ordering a product and not knowing where it is or when it will arrive. During the delivery of a product, the customer wants to be kept in the loop – and since order fulfillment is really about it customer satisfaction, communication is critical. Make efforts to build a connection with your customers. Communication assures them that your supply chain is first-rate and can be relied upon.

Tip 3: Be upfront about delivery costs

You know what else is annoying? A lack of transparency in the pricing. As a rental business with order fulfillment capabilities, you need to be upfront about delivery costs and the criteria you’ve used (e.g., the weight of the product) to arrive at a delivery cost. When your customers know how the delivery price is determined, they will develop stronger confidence in your order fulfillment process. Also, ensure that you’ve done research into your local market – what are other rental businesses charging for order fulfillment? Keeping the shipping price at a reasonable rate will keep your customers coming back.

Tip 4: Adopt an Order Management System

According to a recent study, online rental businesses will be one of the most prosperous trends in the post-pandemic world. As the influx of orders increases, and your order fulfillment processes become more complex, it’s essential to adopt an order management system to have an edge over your competitors. A good management system, such as PREXA 365, allows you to monitor and manage orders in real-time – improving rental efficiency and delivering more impact through skillfully crafted workflows that automate Rental Contracts & Invoicing, Inventory Management, Equipment Tracking & Preventive Maintenance. All while lowering capital expenditure and bolstering ROI.

Tip 5: Have a straightforward replacement policy

As a rental business engaged in order fulfillment, you’ll eventually need to replace a lost or damaged item. When this happens, replacement should commence regardless of the cost. In the delivery of a product to a customer, there should be a return policy as insurance to any good damage or loss. Returns processing is as important to your business as sales. If your return process is challenging or leaves customers frustrated, that negativity can lead to losing any future sales from those customers, and—at the worst—those customers going on a social media tirade against your company because of the poor customer service they received.

Why have an order fulfillment strategy?

The real question is, why not?

Conducting a smooth order fulfillment process allows you to prepare for all shipments and ensure you have the right inventory amounts ready to ship on time. This makes the company more reliable, which can lead to ongoing purchases from current customers.

Furthermore, some customers require certain specifications when ordering products, from budgets to time constraints to product customizations. An effective order fulfillment process ensures you meet all their purchasing needs.

Although other rental businesses may have a similar inventory as yours, a great purchasing experience will help you to stand out.