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Click-to-Ship Time: How fast are you getting an order out the door?

There’s so much that goes on behind the scenes after a customer makes an order. Many retailers are keen on optimizing this phase so they can get packages processed and shipped faster. 

If you’re wondering how you stack up against retail giants like Amazon when it comes to getting orders picked, packed, and sent out on time, then you need to start paying attention to a key metric that many retailers seem to ignore: Click-to-Ship Time.

After analyzing tons of data flowing through Fenix’s system, we pulled some interesting click-to-ship statistics and insights:

  • Across all industries, it takes on average less than 2-days to get a product out the door. 
  • Across industries, Toys & Games is the fastest at getting product out the door, on average 1.2 days
  • Fashion & Apparel is the slowest to get the product out of the warehouse taking an average of 3.4 days (Why is this taking so long)
  • On-time rates for carriers hover between 60-80%. That 20% gap can be significantly improved by shortening the time it takes to get the product out of the warehouse. 

With these stats in mind, it makes sense to understand the click-to-ship time and how it impacts your entire retail operations and revenue growth. In this guide, we’ll explain click-to-ship and the factors that can affect this crucial metric. Then we’ll provide some actionable strategies to help you streamline your eCommerce operations so you can start getting orders packed and ready for shipping a lot faster.

What is click-to-ship time? 

To understand what click-to-ship means in retail, we’ll split the word into two: “Click” and “Ship

‘Click’ refers to the customer making an order on your eCommerce store. ‘Ship’ is when that order begins moving toward the customer.

So click-to-ship time is the time between when a customer places an online order and when that order gets processed, prepared, and sent out for delivery.

Keep in mind that click-to-ship time is not the same as ship-to-delivery time, which is yet another important metric you should be tracking.

Different reasons can affect the time needed to pick, pack, and get an order en route to the customer. Some of them include:

  • Staffing

A situation in which online orders are increasing without enough employees to process them can contribute to shipping delays. If there isn't sufficient staff to keep up with growing demand, customers’ orders will inevitably take longer to process and be readied for shipping.

  • Order processing times

The number of steps involved in receiving and processing a package at the warehouse facility can impact click-to-ship time. From picking and packing an order to completing label, postage, and safety checks, click-to-ship time will be higher if there’s so much lead time between each step in the order processing flow.

  • Holidays and promotions

Order volumes surge during holidays or promotions which means that more shipments will have to be processed. During such times, retail teams that have an inefficient order operations network are barely able to keep up with the influx of orders, thus leading to delays in getting shipments processed and out the door. Even for the most efficient teams, unexpected surges can be harder to manage.

  • Inventory visibility

For orders to get shipped faster, you must first have clear oversight of your supply chain and a precise understanding of your inventory. Do you know the SKU of every product and where they are located in your supply chain at every point in time? And is every bit of inventory data accurately mirrored in your monitoring systems? Failing to get these aspects right will lead to inefficiencies that ultimately hinder you from picking, sorting, and clearing shipments faster. 

When you learn how to calculate and measure your click-to-ship time, you can then easily ascertain how effective and efficient your supply chain process is. Paying close attention to this metric will help to identify areas in your fulfillment operations that need to be tweaked or improved.

If you want to learn more about how click-to-ship impacts customer satisfaction and how you can address these issues, check out our latest guide on the metrics you should be tracking and how to address them.

(Link to Guide)

We’ve also prepared more guides on other crucial metrics you should be leveraging in order to deliver a flawless customer experience and increase conversions. Check them out below:

Akhilesh Srivastava

Author: Akhilesh Srivastava
Founder and CEO of FenixCommerce

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