COVID has proved to be a time of incredible uncertainty – both for the everyday person and brand owners in the CPG (consumer packaged goods) space. For some brands, the unpredictability of what the future holds halted production, while for others, business has never been better. Either way, business has changed drastically as supply chain disruptions, unknown sales forecasts, and shipping delays have led many brands to face uncharted waters.
As you navigate through this new business climate, know that there are a handful of things you can do to help alleviate the challenges of running a CPG during a pandemic.. Because the events of 2020 are proof that the future is uncertain for many industries and brands, it’s a good idea to take steps to future-proof your company.
When it comes to ordering your packaging, consider the following four tips:
1. Order What You Need, When You Need It
Regardless of the size of your company, now more than ever, maintaining a healthy cash flow in your business is not a bad idea. Since it’s hard to predict what future sales may be like, consider ordering on an as-needed basis for things like supplies, ingredients, raw materials, and packaging. This allows you to react to market conditions, maintain a steady cash flow, and avoid waste.
Keep in mind, some suppliers will still have high minimum order requirements. Do your research and consider partnering with companies that allow you the flexibility to order what you need, when you need it.
2. Order Your Packaging More Frequently
Because maintaining a lower inventory helps to keep more cash in the business, not to mention lower costs associated with storage, ordering your packaging frequently allows you to order the quantity that you need, based on demand. This allows you to be nimble and reactionary to market conditions.
Ordering your packaging on a ‘when you need it’ basis also allows you to avoid obsolete or unusable packaging, an often overlooked source of costly loss.
3. Avoid Costly Forecasting Mistakes
It comes as no surprise that this is a very difficult time for many brands to make future sales forecasts for next month, next quarter, or even next year. Because of this, try to avoid over-forecasting the COVID-19 impact and recovery and getting stuck with a large packaging order that will sit in inventory for months. Instead, stay nimble and take a more reactionary approach with flexible ordering.
4. Partner With a Local Manufacturer
Many brands have experienced shipping delays for all sorts of items during the pandemic, especially when ordering from companies located in other countries. By partnering with a local supplier, you avoid the often lengthy process of waiting for packaging to arrive from overseas. Buying local avoids freight time and delays, and results in speedier packaging delivery, which ultimately helps you get your product to market faster.
Still not convinced that on-demand, flexible ordering is the way to go? Learn how your excess inventory may be costing you money, and creating waste. And, be sure to check out our blog post on weathering the COVID-19 storm for some more best business practices.
As brands continue to navigate the world of supply chain disruptions, order delays, and unpredictable COVID-19 impact on the packaging market, it’s important now more than ever to partner with a packaging manufacturer that can meet your needs. If you’re looking for a solution to your inventory struggles, and want to partner with a local supplier that can accommodate small orders with a fast turnaround, look no further than ePac. We will partner with you to provide you all the packaging you need, when you need it. Call us today for a free quote, or click here to contact us on our website.