Mail order systems at one time only had to provide limited scope, the ability to process orders by Post (remember that?), Fax (That’s the machine in the corner of the office that nobody uses) and telephone would do the job just fine. How the picture has changed. Mail order now encompass a huge range of order channels and bringing them together, managing the order flow and stock becomes a major challenge.

Managing channels

Managing sales channels becomes a major challenge for many small to medium sized businesses and for their mail order systems. The running of a website and perhaps a catalogue is not going to reach all the market and presenting your brand and your full product range to its best advantage across multiple channels becomes more complex as time goes on. Mail order systems that can reach all of these sales avenues are difficult to find.

Traditional mail order systems will typically offer integration with a website as one of the sales channel options. However, in today’s market is perhaps inadequate for the needs of most companies. Mail order systems Mail order systems also need to integrate with sale channels such as Amazon, EBay and the price Google Base etc as well as providing a platform for new technology such as mobile devices where normal websites become frustratingly small and impossible to operate…

Traditional Service

In the rush to encompass new technology it can sometimes be tempting to leave the traditional functionality of Mail order systems behind this can often be a costly mistake however. Systems focusing only on channel management often omit functions vital to developing traditional business such as the ability to handle telesales order and manage customer service issues and returns effectively and the ability to manage customer databases for ongoing marketing and customer service activity.

Mail order systems to build brands

Mail order systems that cover all the bases may cost more than systems that focus on certain channels only and for some businesses developing their sales strategy round other channels may appear not to be necessary. However as these businesses develop the strength of their own brand will become more important and investment in mail order systems that allow them the scope for independent brand development may well be the best option.