Author: Andrew Atkinson

We wrote recently about how the advent of eCommerce has created a new customer journey, one in which fulfillment and delivery play a critical role at each stage, from beginning to end. Today, let’s look a little closer at the first step. Let’s leave aside for another day (and another post) the influence of advertising, word-of-mouth, and other awareness-building stuff and start with the beginning of the customer’s direct interaction with your company. In brick-and-mortar land, where we all physically exist, that place...

We’ve talked a lot at GrandCanals about how thoroughly transformative eCommerce is, in a lot of different ways. At a time when malls are becoming ghost towns, well-known brands enter bankruptcy or circle the drain, and “retail apocalypse” is used by the business press without hyperbole, eCommerce sales growth screams ahead. Statista is projecting a nearly 250% increase in eCommerce retail sales from 2014 ($1.36 trillion) to 2021 ($4.48 trillion) and the Department of Commerce has recorded a 15.5% increase in...

Is there anyone who likes doing carrier RFPs? We all know that issuing an RFP is the best way to get carriers to compete for our business and to really see how much better we could be doing on shipping charges than the incremental discounts we have been able to negotiate with our incumbent carrier every year. But the RFP process as usually constituted is horribly time-consuming. Meeting after meeting to gather the necessary information, then lots more work to put that...

As the holiday peak shipping season nears and shippers are planning how best to manage it, the holiday surcharges announced by UPS may be prompting consideration of alternate carriers for holiday shipments. UPS, as you may recall, will add a 27-cent charge on all ground packages sent to homes between Nov. 19 and Dec. 2 -- the weeks encapsulating Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  And from Dec. 17-23, UPS will charge an extra 27 cents for each ground shipment, 81...

Last week about 1,000 retail and e-tail professionals descended on Boston for the 2017 eTail East Conference. During the show there were lots of great sessions that discussed various topics including the rapidly changing eTail market landscape, the impact of millennial buyers & Amazon.com, eCommerce site and customer experience optimization, and the fulfillment of products/goods to the customer. If you weren’t able to make it to the show this year, here are 3 of my major takeaways to give you...

Most eCommerce retailers are well into their holiday peak planning. After all, securing product, developing and scheduling promotions and updating websites require well-orchestrated, advance efforts.  And with UPS’s June announcement regarding “surge pricing”, no doubt concerns have arisen around shipping cost as well as carriers’ capability to handle daily shipment volume that will exceed an estimated 60% of average. Carriers such as UPS and FedEx plan for the peak holiday shipping season all year and with the experience of a number...

Fulfillment Intelligence Cloud 3.0 Provides Intelligence Required to Improve Fulfillment Chains and Meet Rising Customer Expectations on Delivery Time, Cost and Convenience Los Gatos, Calif., August 10, 2017 — GrandCanals, the market leader in analytics-driven fulfillment, will be participating at eTail East, which will be held August 14-17, 2017, in Boston, Massachusetts. GrandCanals will be hosting a booth (#516), where the company will be showcasing their industry-leading fulfillment analytics capabilities that help e-tailers and retailers fulfill with confidence and delight their...

We’ve written before about how the eCommerce revolution and the related raising of customer expectations by Amazon.com are affecting companies in particular industry verticals, such as apparel.  We’ve talked about the broad challenge posed by omnichannel commerce. We’ve even written a white paper on Surviving the eCommerce Transformation. Although these pieces were all written with our enterprise customers and prospects in mind, they are relevant for 3PLs too. Think about it: for a 3PL, these forces are directly affecting your customers,...

Amazon recently announced that its third annual Prime Day will take place starting on 11 July 2017. For Amazon, it’s their biggest sales day (Internet Retailer estimated shoppers spent about $2.5 billion on Prime Day 2016) and a way of pushing Prime memberships. For Amazon sellers, it’s an opportunity to tap into a big surge in online volume....

The eCommerce transformation is hitting pretty much every form of retail, though not all at the same rate…...