Streamlining Order Processing and Fulfillment Through Offshore Virtual Assistants

After clicking "buy," e-commerce orders require packing and shipping. Growth poses challenges like increased orders and inventory. A Phoenix virtual assistant can optimize operations. Learn how they streamline order processing for local e-commerce.
order processing for Phoenix business  - featured image

Table of Contents

A customer’s journey begins after clicking the “buy” button. New orders come in on your e-commerce platform, which you must pack and ship to the right destination.

This process might seem easy when your store is new. Only a few orders come in daily, so you can process and fulfill them yourself. However, issues may arise as your business grows. Your channels multiply, your customer base expands, and your product inventory grows.

A virtual assistant in Phoenix can help eliminate bottlenecks and improve your operations. This article discusses how virtual assistants streamline order processing for Phoenix-based e-commerce businesses.

Key Aspects of Order Processing and Fulfillment

8 Key Aspects of Order Processing and Fulfillment

Order processing occurs after a customer places an order. Businesses must first confirm whether the products are in stock. Next, they must pick the items from the inventory and drop them off in a sorting area.

Each customer order is gathered, packed, labeled, and shipped to the customer’s address. Businesses with higher shipping volumes may use order consolidation, while smaller firms prefer direct shipping. 

E-commerce businesses in Phoenix can tap into outsourced e-commerce services to handle these tasks.

Order processing involves five primary steps—from the placement of the order to delivery—and sometimes more if the buyer starts a return process. So, what happens when an order is being processed? Here is a closer look at the typical workflow.

  • Order placement. After receiving an order, stores send the order details—including items, quantities, and delivery addresses—to an order management system (OMS).
  • Picking inventory. This step involves collecting a specific quantity of products to complete customer orders. It requires control as it affects the overall workflow.
  • Sorting. Before packing items, separate them according to their shipping address. Accuracy is crucial to ensuring complete products and high customer satisfaction.
  • Packing. Packing includes weighing the parcel and labeling it with delivery instructions and the customer’s address.
  • Shipping. This phase involves transporting orders to the customer’s address. Online stores can ship orders directly to buyers or consolidate them with nearby deliveries to reduce costs.

How Virtual Assistants Streamline Order Processing for Phoenix-based Businesses

How Virtual Assistants Streamline Order Processing for Phoenix-based Businesses

Monitoring all customer orders is a time-consuming and detail-focused job, especially when you have various selling platforms or marketplaces to consider. This part of running an online shop is extremely admin-heavy because you must ensure the right items get delivered to the right customers in the most efficient way possible.

Virtual assistants from an offshoring provider in the Philippines can simplify order processing for your Phoenix-based business. They can handle the nitty-gritty aspects of packing and shipping your customers’ orders. Order processing and fulfillment are essential because timeliness and accuracy significantly affect customer satisfaction.

Employing order processing and fulfillment virtual assistants is more beneficial than hiring internal staff. You can choose competent virtual order fulfillment associates from a larger pool of skilled talent, especially since the main age groups in Phoenix are Gen X and millennials. Talent abundance makes finding a candidate who best suits your specific needs easier.

Virtual assistants cost less than in-house staff because you do not need to pay for equipment, office space, or allowances. Put simply, you have more options and receive a similar level of service for a fraction of the cost of hiring in-house.

Here are other ways virtual assistants can help optimize order processing tasks for your Phoenix-based business.

Easy Collaboration and Communication

The order management process requires multiple departments to collaborate and coordinate with each other to deliver products successfully. In many cases, inefficient communication between related parties results in errors or delays in order processing and fulfillment.

Fast delivery is crucial for online businesses. More than half of online shoppers will cancel their order if the store fails to provide them with quick shipping.

Many e-commerce businesses in Phoenix employ virtual assistants to avoid inefficient communication since doing so is less time-consuming. Virtual assistants are also well-versed in all the tools and practices needed for effective and accessible communication.

Faster Order Tracking

Buyers want to know how long it will take to deliver the product or where it is. Poor visibility and inaccurate order tracking result in increased customer inquiries, a hike in customer service requests, and a negative shopping experience.

You can avoid these issues by streamlining your e-commerce store or app, letting customers track their orders, or giving them real-time updates. You can hire virtual assistants for relevant back-end processes, such as entering tracking numbers from shipping providers into your OMS, which is necessary to allow such a feature for buyers.

Customers are more likely to be satisfied with your service if they can view and manage orders independently. Following customer-centric outsourcing principles ensures effective order tracking.

Adaptability to Changes

Online stores can experience an increase or decrease in demand due to market forces or seasonal fluctuations. When this happens, adjusting can be challenging. You need to establish a system through which you can gain the flexibility to quickly adapt to changing demands.

Hiring order management virtual assistants from a business process outsourcing (BPO) firm is the easiest and most effective solution for adapting to changes quickly.

With virtual assistants, you can scale up or down depending on your current needs and pay accordingly. An alternative strategy is to invest in a scalable tool that can handle changing order quantities when needed.

Order Management Tasks Made Easy With Virtual Assistants

Order Management Tasks Made Easy With Virtual Assistants

Since e-commerce is the second-largest industry in Arizona, you are more likely to have competition. Hence, a positive online shopping experience and an efficient order management process are necessary. 

Are you planning to engage in e-commerce customer service outsourcing but are unsure which specific functions your virtual assistants can handle? Worry not! This section focuses on the various order processing tasks your virtual assistants can do for your Phoenix-based business.

  • Processing orders upon receipt. Virtual assistants can receive and accept customer orders through the website, social media, or phone calls, depending on your strategy. They then enter the order information to ensure all the necessary details are in the database. Lastly, they send the buyer an order confirmation email or message.
  • Validating orders. Accepted orders must be validated for pricing, promo codes, special discounts, and available inventory to monitor the store’s cash flow and stock availability. Virtual assistants verify the details provided by the customer to ensure the order’s accuracy and completeness. They also screen orders to prevent fraud.
  • Checking inventory and allocation. Managing inventory is time-consuming but crucial for the store’s success. Virtual assistants streamline order processing for your Phoenix-based business with detailed, prompt, and error-free inventory reports. They track the inventory records and notify you about low-stock or out-of-stock situations.
  • Processing payments. Virtual assistants have the financial knowledge and skills to use payment processing tools. They process invoice payments and handle credit card transactions. To ensure your business’s safety, they verify protocol compliance, guarantee payment gateway security, and monitor payment collection.
  • Packing orders. Coordinating with multiple departments is tricky. Virtual assistants can contact the fulfillment center or warehouse during order management. They collaborate with the center to ensure the order is picked up, packed, and delivered on time. They also arrange packaging material to keep products secure and avoid damaged goods.
  • Tracking orders and sending status updates. 76% of consumers stop doing business with a company after one poor customer experience. Customers want to see where the parcel is and how long it takes to arrive. Third-party professionals can update customers on shipping details, such as approximate delivery dates.
  • Handling shipping and delivery logistics. Virtual assistants optimize order processing for your Phoenix-based business by scheduling pickups for on-time delivery. They look into customer preferences, such as cost considerations and shipping methods. They handle logistics to avoid delays since fast delivery adds to customer satisfaction.
  • Managing returns and exchanges. Virtual assistants handle returns and exchanges for customers. They communicate with buyers to understand why they want to return or exchange products. Buyer feedback helps you improve order management and production. Customers also get round-the-clock support when initiating return requests.
  • Providing customer support. Store owners spend a lot of time communicating with customers, so they have less time to allocate to growing the business. Hence, they hire virtual assistants for order fulfillment and processing. An excellent outsourced customer service tip is to prioritize quality control beyond cost reduction.

The Bottom Line

Virtual assistants are a great solution to the challenges e-commerce businesses face when processing and fulfilling orders. They are important in streamlining order processing for Phoenix-based businesses and driving immense success and growth.

Getting virtual assistants from Unity Communications has many benefits, including competitive rates, detailed productivity and progress reports, and a full suite of powerful tools. Outsource your order processing to us and delegate operations to capable hands. Let’s connect to find out more.

Picture of Allie Delos Santos
Allie Delos Santos is an experienced content writer who graduated cum laude with a degree in mass communications. She specializes in writing blog posts and feature articles. Her passion is making drab blog articles sparkle. Allie is an avid reader—with a strong interest in magical realism and contemporary fiction. When she is not working, she enjoys yoga and cooking.
Picture of Allie Delos Santos

Allie Delos Santos

We Build Your Next-Gen Team for a Fraction of the Cost. Get in Touch to Learn How.

You May Also Like

Meet With Our Experts Today!