Holiday Season Best Practices: Order Promotion Pitfalls Many Retailers Face, Freestyle Solutions

Executing World-Class Order Promotions Is Key to a Successful Holiday

Among the thorniest challenges retailers face during the holiday period is creating and executing successful promotions that motivate customers and drive business. Don’t let these common order management pitfalls sabotage your success.

Best practices department: order promotion division.

When planning your marketing strategy for Black Friday, Thanksgiving, and the entire holiday period, the first step is defining the promos you will offer your eCommerce consumers to drive more business. Step Two is setting up and testing the promotions you have planned. In the weeks ahead of launch each promo must be vetted to be sure it works as designed, won’t overwhelm your systems with volume, and is easy to handle.

Warning, Pitfalls Ahead!

Here are some common pitfalls that prevent retailers from setting up and executing holiday promotions efficiently:

  1. Limited range of promo types
    Ideally, you have access to a wide range of promotion types and your shopping cart technology supports the promos you need (e.g. free shipping, buy one get one, buy one get a different one, percent off whole order, dollars off whole order, percent/dollars off individual line item, etc.) It is just as important that your back office can support any promos your shopping cart supports, otherwise you can’t implement your marketing plan without a big manual lift.Does your order management system support a wide-enough range of promotion types and shopping cart systems? Does your Order Management System (OMS) handle stacking of promos to satisfy the expectations of call-in customers?
  2. Promos not firing right
    Results at checkout must conform to what the customer expects. Consistency between what the customer sees on the web site and how the promo is applied—well, that’s a fundamental requirement that all too often proves hard to achieve. Without consistency between what the site promises, what the shopping cart delivers, and what the order system charges, your call center is doomed to be flooded with complaints that are costly to deal with and solve.Does your OMS integrate seamlessly with your eCommerce system to guarantee every customer has the same consistent, error-free experience? Can you set up a promotion in your back office and publish it to all your channels? Or do you find yourself having to set up promotions separately in multiple systems? If so, you have a lot of company. Many retailers must assign personnel to the cumbersome task of coordinating promo implementation across systems. A fallible process like that cannot deliver full confidence that everything will execute smoothly as intended.
  3. Painful inflexibility
    All too often, making changes to a promo after launch throws your team into turmoil and can leave you wondering whether the change was made correctly everywhere.Here again, the ability to make changes through your OMS in the back office and then publish those changes automatically and reliably to all channels is crucial. It all comes down to setting up and syncing back office and ecommerce, with the OMS sitting in the middle of a circle of sales channels running a variety of systems (Magento Shopify, BigCommerce, or our own SiteLINK) which report back to order management to fill orders. Note that Freestyle’s SiteLINK ecommerce system is fully integrated with our order management solution and will prevent these very problems from occurring.

Moving Up, or Moving Beyond?

Whether you are a small, growing merchant adopting an Order and Inventory Management solution for the first time, or a mature merchant who wants to move beyond your legacy systems (so many APIs!), make it a priority to enhance your back-office operations with an order management solution that:

  • Handles the widest range of shopping cart technologies
  • Enables the setup of promotions in the back office with consistent publishing to the channels
  • Guarantees agility and confidence when changes need to be made

In addition, a full-range order management solution offers coordinated warehouse functions to ensure that picking, packing and promos are all managed from one place.

Why not take a closer look at Freestyle’s M.O.M (Multichannel Order Manager) advanced multichannel eCommerce order management solution?  With all the advanced capabilities we offer to manage your promotions, you won’t be left with a lump of coal in your stocking this holiday season!

If you would like to discuss how managing promotions can make your holiday season bright, please contact us!