The Growth of Store-Based Fulfillment Strategies

The retail industry has evolved, driven by shifts in consumer delivery expectations – fast, free, same or next-day receipt of purchases - that have created new challenges for the industry. Retailers have responded by increasing their use of the store network for fulfillment of digital orders, offering pick up in store, ship from store, curbside pickup, etc. But that solution creates even more complexity, as merchants precariously balance inventory across online and walk-in demand and for multiple fulfillment options within the store. To thrive when managing the complexities of omnichannel fulfillment, we must look beyond traditional multi-echelon for a forecasting and replenishment solution that was designed and engineered for the way we shop today.

With Omni Inventory Optimization (OIO), Manhattan Associates has introduced the industry’s first technology designed to handle multi-channel, multi-echelon forecasting to enable alignment of inventory with omnichannel demand across the combined fulfillment network of distribution centers (DC) and stores.

What is Omni Inventory Optimization?

It’s the most advanced inventory management technology available for the omnichannel retailer. Yesterday’s multi-echelon technology was never engineered with the idea that online demand would be fulfilled by store inventory.

That To profitably fulfill online orders with store inventory, retailers require the Omni Inventory Optimization technology that is now part of Manhattan Demand Forecasting. It is the optimal approach for order fulfillment to leverage the complete network of inventory, demand patterns, traditional DC, and new store-based fulfillment strategies to meet customer demand in the most profitable way.

Machine Learning Ensures Your Inventory Is In The Right Place

Omni Inventory Optimization uses machine learning to continuously monitor and automatically fine-tune inventory plans as store-based fulfillment strategies mature, enabling accurately positioned inventory across the network to reduce the risk of stock outs or oversupply.

And OIO is so smart that it can forecast down to the individual SKU/location/fulfillment strategy level. This means that the forecast for a pick up in store initiative for one item in a particular store is unique and could be markedly different from another pickup item in the same store, or even for the same item being made available to ship from the store.

With the ability to intelligently unlock the store network to meet digital demand, retailers can effectively evaluate the impact of offering different fulfillment options, optimizing strategies to improve customer experiences and increase profitability.

Key Benefits of Manhattan Omni Inventory Optimization
  • Intelligently unlock the store network to fulfill digital order demand
  • Forecast store inventory placement by SKU/location/fulfillment strategy
  • Reduce out-of-stock events across the store network resulting from unexpected online demand
  • Automatically monitor and self-tune inventory strategies to meet changing demand patterns