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Is your supply chain ready for Black Friday?

A weak supply chain can be a disaster for retailers on Black Friday and afterwards, are you prepared?

|Nov 26|magazine5 min read

 Last year, international e-commerce sales amounted to $3.53 trillion, with shopping outlets being closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, practically all festive shopping will be completed online, is your supply chain ready for the surge in demand?

Preparations for Black Friday started a while ago, with supply chain managers putting their strategies in place months before people log on for their Black Friday deals. 

With consumers generally shopping from Thanksgiving Day until Cyber Monday, a weak supply chain could be a disaster to businesses, especially with many reducing their working hours, overheads and more to cover the damaging cost of the pandemic.

Having a weak supply chain will cause delays for customers at the same time that customer expectations are growing, for example, 87% of consumers want to be able to choose the delivery time that is most convenient to them. With the inevitable delays caused by COVID-19 on top of an unprepared supply chain could spell disaster. 

Prior planning is one of the most critical factors of a strong supply chain. Supply chain managers began preparations by creating and also training a team that is specifically focused on preparing for the holiday season and its demand and capacity. Cross-training existing employees can be beneficial too, as this cuts the cost of hiring and training somebody new.

With the experienced team in place, managers need to ensure that the distribution centre is ready as inventory volumes surge and demand quickly rises. 

Supply chain managers also have to plan around certain factors such as driver shortage and capacity limits. Having a dedicated fleet of drivers means that you can be assured that drivers and capacity are available during peak periods, such as Black Friday.

A strong supply chain and a prepared team has the flexibility to handle all of these problems. Experiencing a successful Black Friday begins with having the end-to-end capabilities that are able to adjust and deliver results.

With a strong supply chain and a solid plan in place, businesses can be ready for the demands that come with Black Friday and the festive shopping season. 

Retailers with a strong supply chain will ensure strong sales and customer satisfaction, setting them in good stead for this festive season.

Not only are supply chains feeling the pressure of one of the largest shopping days of the year, extra website traffic can easily bring down and crash a website which would lead to a downfall in sales and customers, maybe, looking elsewhere. 

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