What is trade logistics?
Retail logistics: ensuring availability at the point of sale (POS)
A potential customer's buying decisions can be broken down into different phases; advertising experts refer to this as the buying decision process or Kotler's five-phase model. Depending on the status, these are problem recognition, information search, evaluation of alternative, purchase decision as such, and post-purchase behavior.
A company that cannot provide the desired product in the appropriate specification in a timely manner may lose a customer to the competition. All processes carried out as part of retail logistics are designed to avoid just that - and to ensure the smooth sale of goods.
proLogistik explains the processes behind the term "retail logistics" and shows the advantages of optimizing them accordingly.
Definition: Trade logistics as management of all flows of goods and information
A smooth flow of goods is the prerequisite for sustainable business, especially in industrial and commercial enterprises. Finally, production threatens to come to a standstill if required auxiliary materials and intermediate products do not arrive at the appropriate production location on time. Trade logistics therefore encompasses all flows of goods and information that need to be taken into account between individual players.
The better a company can respond to this and procure materials or products in advance, the more likely such forecast-based measures will also have an impact on profitability. The challenge is to find the right balance between the demand for maximum product availability and cost-efficient procurement and warehouse management.
Possible processes in which trade logistics plays a role:
- Communication between a trading company and suppliers
- Communication between a trading company and its own customers
- Processes within a retail company (intralogistics)
Important: Intelligent retail logistics, i.e. logistics that take all factors into account, enable companies to manage warehouse space efficiently and make products available exactly where they are needed. The higher the degree of automation in retail logistics, the more diverse the resulting benefits.
Retail logistics: Advantages of the best possible control of flows of goods and information
It is obvious that companies such as those in the retail sector are particularly dependent on ensuring optimum distribution of goods. Customers want to buy product X here and now, possibly this was the main intention to visit the store. Functioning retail logistics should therefore be understood first and foremost as a process of intralogistics - we would therefore like to briefly present the benefits:
- Ensuring availability at the point of sale (POS) in line with demand
- Reduction of possible incorrect purchases
- Better control of the demand for goods based on forecasts
- Reduced storage time
- Lower capital commitment due to optimized warehouse management
In short, it pays off in many respects to optimize retail logistics processes and thus better align operations with actual needs. In this way, companies not only ensure a regulated, continuous flow of goods, but can also efficiently utilize and thus manage their warehouse.
Intralogistics for retail: The practical interface for high-performance retail logistics
Consumer interests and needs are never the same and rigid, but continuously adapt. A retail company must respond intelligently to this in order to make the best possible use of the available sales space. It therefore makes sense to use a warehouse management system (WMS) to control processes in such a way that optimum warehouse and material flow control is possible. An integrative component of this is a trade logistics system that not only enables data to be prepared, but also to be linked accordingly.
Aspects of this data use include, for example, automatically generated e-mails that enable a flow of information on the intranet. Databases shared with all departments that enable Electronic Data Interchange - ensuring a software-based workflow.
Important: The specific form that retail logistics takes in a company therefore also depends on the company's organizational structure. In principle, however, it is becoming increasingly important, analogous to supply chain management. This is because customer needs are becoming increasingly specific, so that retail companies also have to respond to them. A look at the growing range of products, especially in the food trade, shows how sensible intelligent retail logistics can be.