These days you can order anything from takeout to groceries from any smart device. Grocery stores are filling electronic orders for drive-thru pickup. Markets are delivering boxed meals to your door. Food delivery services like Grubhub and Doordash are making going out to eat a thing of the past!
It doesn’t matter if you are a business selling to consumers or to other businesses, how people want to buy things has changed and you must change with the trends. Technology is now part of every transaction. Amazon has set the standard by creating a marketplace where almost anything can be purchased with the push of a button. This is what all consumers expect of all their suppliers. Amazon recently took it one step further by extending this buying trend to the entire Whole Foods business product offering. Soon, if you don’t have a button for customers to push when they want to buy something from you, they will be buying it from someone who does.
Restaurants and liquor stores now have an entire delivery industry through Doordash, UberEats, Drizzly, Postmates, and GrubHub. Each of these apps has combined a multi-vendor marketplace with technology and a button to push where the consumer can buy almost anything they want and have it delivered to their door in minutes. Apps, buttons, and marketplaces are coming for every industry and every supply chain – and you should be excited about it.
Change is scary, but it comes with amazing new opportunities. The global ecosystem of Amazon sellers has built some big businesses by being part of the marketplace. Sellers reach customers they could never afford to reach before and each transaction is seamless with more efficiency than they ever could have dreamed possible. That is the power of technology and collaborative problem solving. When we all agree to solve the same problem, the same way, we all get a better, more consistent outcome at a dramatically lower cost. Better yet, we all get to focus on things that really differentiate us.
Let’s take a look at the food and beverage supply chain as an example. Today, the industry still runs pretty much the same way it has for hundreds of years.
The buyer spends hours a week:
- Tracking inventory
- Placing orders
- Checking order statuses
- Receiving shipments
- Balancing accounting
On the other side, the suppliers sales and customer service teams are spending hours per week, per customer:
- Taking orders
- Entering orders
- Pricing orders
- Tracking orders
- Paying invoices
Many suppliers have an electronic ordering tool, but it only works for that one supplier. These types of silo solutions are going against the trend of electronic marketplaces that allow easy access to all suppliers at once from one inclusive platform. Why should online ordering and reordering be harder for business owners than for their customers?
One simple mobile app – that syncs with a desktop platform allows buyers to immediately purchase and track orders for their businesses from all suppliers – is the disruptive technology that creates a real time and money saving solution.
The most common buyer issues with current supplier methods are:
- The buyers spend hours a week comparing suppliers products and pricing to ensure they are competitive and in-line with market trends.
- Each supplier expects the buyer to learn their one-off tool and process. As a result, most buyers do not use any of them and still order via email, text messages, voicemails, and faxes.
- Ordering management software that does not interface with the buyers POS or accounting system causes extra work for the buyer.
- An OMS that is not available on a smartphone app falls short of providing a complete solution.
It is an old-school, inefficient supply chain that is ripe for disruption. Buyers order from dozens of suppliers every month and each supplier requires a unique effort. This is still true for many specialty retail sectors from spas to gyms to pet stores and beyond. Consolidated visibility and a dramatically more efficient market is not something to fear – it is something to embrace.
The only risk to any business in these kinds of disruption cycles is that they fail to participate in evolving trends and, in doing so, cease to be competitive. All the data is secure – nothing confidential is ever shared, but the entire industry will begin to have real, collaborative visibility because they agreed to solve the same problem the same way.
Jellyfish Order Management for Retailers & Buyers
The Jellyfish free Android and iOS order management apps can be downloaded and used by any retailer to order anything from any supplier. When used by both the buyer and the supplier, each saves hours per week and improves visibility, communication, and engagement. Like Amazon, Jellyfish gives the buyer the ability to buy from all their suppliers on a single screen and order with the click of a button. Jellyfish order management integrates with their POS and accounting systems so ordering can become as simple as clicking a few buttons.
Jellyfish Order Management for Suppliers
Suppliers can now connect with and communicate with all of their customers and prospects through one tool. Jellyfish integrates into the suppliers systems which means orders are entered within seconds. Orders get filled more accurately and bills get paid faster. The sales team has tools to see how much of the buyer’s business they are or are not getting by product category. At pennies per order, marketplace apps like Jellyfish have the potential to save billions of dollars in markets that are constantly under competitive pressure.