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The year’s biggest hits: Top 10 FLEXE blogs of 2018

2018 was another year of massive growth and disruption for the retail and supply chain industries. Below are key learnings from the top 10 FLEXE blogs this year.

It’s clear that the world is changing. 2018 was packed with retailers seeking out innovative and new ways to meet customers’ rising expectations, and looking to strong logistics solutions in order to implement them.

Take a look at our most popular articles from 2018 and stay tuned for our 2019 Retail & Logistics Predictions report coming next month. We’ll be gathering the top industry trends from the past year, as well as making predictions on what’s to come.

Top 10 FLEXE blog posts

1. The Future of Supply Chain

We spoke to 16 experts about where the supply chain industry is headed and what the future holds considering the immense amount of disruption we’ve seen. Check out their takes in this collection of articles.

Key learnings:

  1. Embracing the new reality includes understanding the strategic advantage of modernized supply chains and getting on board with the speed at which these changes are taking place.
  2. Evolving supply chain technology is driving efficiency, visibility, and results.
  3. New business models are emerging to meet the rising expectations of customers and a 24/7 buying cycle.
  4. At the heart of every supply chain are humans: the customers you are serving and the professionals that make that possible.

2. 2018 D3: Future-Proof Your Warehouse Strategy

In this video presentation, you can watch Karl Siebrecht, Co-founder and CEO of FLEXE, give a talk at the 2018 D3 Retail Summit on how you can “Future-Proof Your Warehousing.”

Key learnings:

  1. Future-proofing is the concept of planning for the unexpected because disruptions happen and there’s only so much you can control.
  2. Future-proofing your warehouse strategy is necessary because eCommerce and customer preferences will continue to grow and change.
  3. You can do this by implementing a degree of structural flexibility within your organization, even with something as static as warehouses.

3. 9 Retail & Logistics Trends to Watch in 2018

Check out the top trends from 2018 in the retail and logistics industries, including storefronts making a comeback with omnichannel, retailers adopting startup mentalities, and companies using data to drive delivery strategies and promotions. Take a look and find out if we were right.

Key learnings:

  1. A top trend from 2018 was legacy retailers embracing change in order to survive. They sought out partnerships and acquisitions, incorporated direct-to-consumer services, and improved their in-store and online presences.
  2. We predicted that next-day delivery would become Amazon’s new standard in 2018 and that other businesses would have to innovate to compete.
  3. We anticipated that mobile commerce would continue to grow in 2018 and predicted that shopping via SMS would be the next frontier.

4. 3 Ways to Master Omnichannel through Logistics—And Why You Should

Having an omnichannel presence is imperative for retailers, but doing it well is complex. It requires rethinking outdated business models and implementing strong logistics strategies. Discover three ways you can master omnichannel with your logistics strategy.

Key learnings:

  1. Legacy retailers and brands are revamping their physical formats to better cater to their customers.
  2. Being able to offer a variety of delivery options is great for customers, complicated for retailers, but not impossible.
  3. Being an omnichannel retailer means that you need to have varied distribution formats that are quite different from traditional warehousing models.

5. A Thing of Beauty: Scalable, Flexible eCommerce Fulfillment

Read how one FLEXE customer handled the fulfillment bottleneck caused by the rapidly increasing demand for their cosmetics products.

Key learnings:

  1. This eCommerce cosmetics company was able to tackle massive order volume within a matter of weeks. With on-demand warehousing, they were able to ramp quickly to accommodate peak-season demand.
  2. FLEXE eCommerce fulfillment provided a fast, flexible, and scalable solution to manage order volumes without investing in fixed assets or long-term 3PL contracts.
  3. This retailer only needed one warehouse to improve their fulfillment operations and were able to scale order volume from 38K to more than 100K orders per month while reducing operating costs over time.

6. You Can't Sell on Amazon if Your Products Are Out of Stock

Your sales will go to another vendor if you’re out of stock on Amazon, but storing goods with them is outrageously expensive. If Amazon is one of your top sales channels, you can significantly reduce storage costs (by 40-80%) with FLEXE’s Retail Distribution for FBA.

Key learnings:

  1. In April 2018, Amazon increased its storage and fulfillment fees for FBA sellers. Meaning that if they wanted to protect their profit margins, they had to improve their supply chain operations.
  2. Storing goods with FLEXE can save retailers and brands 40-80% on storage costs, particularly in Q4 when Amazon’s rates increase 300%.
  3. With FLEXE FBA Distribution, FBA sellers can add an on-demand FLEXE facility to store the bulk of inventory throughout the year.

7. Your Brand Deserves Modern Logistics, Don't You Think?

Amazon has set the standard for delivery promise, but not every retailer can afford to build the fulfillment network that Amazon has. Find out three ways to modernize your logistics.

Key learnings:

  1. Reinforcing your brand and creating an experience with customized packaging is one of the most overlooked ways to develop brand loyalty.
  2. Flexible fulfillment and warehousing solutions give retailers and brands more options and better service.
  3. Customized packaging combined with a flexible fulfillment solution gives you total control over the brand experience and delivery promise you give to your customers. No Amazon needed.

8. Shopify Fulfillment: Helping Shopify Merchants Focus on Growth, Not Order Fulfillment

Find out how FLEXE’s integration with Shopify gives merchants access to a nation-wide, on-demand fulfillment and logistics solution capable of creating a next-day delivery network.

Key learnings:

  1. FLEXE helps Shopify merchants to scale quickly and efficiently by giving them access to a network of more than 1000 warehouses.
  2. With a simple and easy integration, Shopify merchants can save time and money on building out a fulfillment network. No sourcing, no long-term contracts.
  3. As Shopify merchants grow and increase their fulfillment footprint, their inventory management grows as well. FLEXE helps simplify inventory management with a single view of inventory levels across your entire network.

9. Supply Chain Is the Heart of Business

Supply chains have gone from being a business niche to being a strategic asset. See what’s driving the change and what that means for the people working in it.

Key learnings:

  1. Because technology is cheaper and more user-friendly than ever before, smaller, innovative startups can now compete with older, established business models (building a brand through Instagram, using Snapchat advertising, and cloud storage and services.)
  2. Strategizing today’s supply chains involves recognizing—and anticipating—potential risks.
  3. Due to the huge industry growth, supply chain experts are becoming highly sought after.

10. 3 Reasons Retail Partnerships and Acquisitions Fuel Market Growth

Partnerships and acquisitions are a key strategy for gaining market share. Here are three reasons why this matters and how your logistics strategy underpins the success of your operations.

Key learnings:

  1. Legacy retailers have turned to strategic partnership in order to stay relevant in an industry where the new benchmarks of success are fulfillment, last-mile delivery, and transportation.
  2. Next-day delivery requires a new level of structural flexibility, including unique warehouse and distribution center capabilities.
  3. Businesses can make use of Logistics-as-a-Service (LaaS) to lower the barriers of entry to next-day delivery.

We hope you had a fantastic 2018 and that you’ll keep up with the FLEXE blog in 2019.