What does Fulfillment mean?

Fulfillment in economics refers to the totality of all activities and processes which, after the conclusion of a sales contract, serve the supply or supply of the buyer by the seller or by a partner of the seller.

Terms to be distinguished in Fulfillment

Order Fulfillment

Order fulfillment is a generic term for fulfillment, i. e. the processing of a customer order; typically regardless of the type of goods ordered.

Service Fulfillment

Service Fulfillment means a specification of order fulfillment with regard to the nature of the order. For example, the performance of a service by a delivery service.

Omnichannel Fulfillment

Omnichannel fulfillment refers to a cross-channel fulfillment of the order. Cross-channel means that different channels are used in the interaction between seller and buyer. For example, an online reservation by the customer for certain products to be picked up at a store of the seller (also called “Click & Reserve”).

Which process steps does fulfillment involve?

Fulfillment involves a variety of coordinated operational activities and processes. Among others, the following are attributed to fulfillment:

  • Order acceptance
  • Acceptance of reservations
  • Acceptance of consultation dates
  • Storage
  • Storage compensation
  • Picking
  • Packaging
  • Franking
  • Dispatch
  • Returns including disposal
  • Supply of spare parts
  • Repair including exchange of goods

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Click & Collect refers to the possibility to buy goods online at a retailer’s online shop and then pick them up in a retail store.

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