One of the most important features of ChannelEngine is that it offers you the ability to manage and automate the orders that are placed on a marketplace. How orders are handled is depending on how your webshop or other warehouse management system is connected to ChannelEngine. If a webshop is fully automated, ChannelEngine hooks into the existing order process of the webshop and the whole process will be automated. If you only use a product feed and use ChannelEngine as a stand-alone platform to handle orders, manual actions will be required.
To get a good grasp on how the entire order flow (order --> shipment / cancellation --> return) works, please consult the following flowchart.
// The order overview
Below an example is shown of what your order overview might look like in ChannelEngine. You can see the (ChannelEngine) order id, the channel (name), the channel order number, the order date, the order status, the customer's invoice address and the total order amount. In the example below, every order has been shipped, but the order status can vary as explained in further details in the ' order status' section of this guide. In the actions column, you can see the 'eye' icon which can be clicked in order to see the order details. If an order is still 'In Progress', you will also see a 'truck' icon to create a shipment for an order.
On the top of the order overview, you can search on specific attributes such as the channel order number, or filter the overview based on order status, fulfillment, channel, or a date range. These filters can also be combined to get a specific order overview (for example: all shipped FBA orders from all 5 Amazon EU channels in the month March 2019). And the right-hand side of those filters you can also export the current filter results as a CSV-file or to automatically generate invoices or packing slips for these orders.
// Order details
When you open an order (using the eye button under ‘Actions’ or by clicking on the order number) you’ll see the complete order information including invoice and shipping addresses and the actual order.
By default, VAT will not be shown unless the 'Show VAT and commission' button is selected. Please note that most marketplaces will not include VAT on their order and calculation is done by either using your default VAT percentage or by using country-specific percentages based on your VAT settings.
// Order status
An order has a status that corresponds to how far it currently is in the process. Most of the orders will have an “ In Progress” or “Shipped” status, the rest is less prevalent to happen and is depending on which ways of order handling the channel supports. Please note that the order status depicts the general status of an order and does not necessarily reflect the status of a subsequent part of an order. For example: once a shipment is added to an order, the status of the order will be “Shipped”. However, this does not guarantee that the shipment has already been exported to the channel. The same goes for a cancellation: the order status might change to “Cancelled” or “Closed”, but the cancellation itself might still be on “In Progress” / “Not Exported Yet”.
All possible statuses of an order:
|New||This is a new order that has not yet been picked up by the webshop or order management system.|
|In Progress||This order has been acknowledged by the webshop and order management system (and has a merchant order number).|
|Shipped||This order has been shipped.|
|In Backorder||This order is in backorder.|
|Cancelled||This order is cancelled (by either the merchant or the customer / marketplace).|
|Combined||This order is partially shipped (but still awaiting one or more items to be shipped - usually happens with partial merchant fulfilled orders)|
|Closed||This order is partially shipped and partially cancelled or returned.|
|Returned||This order has been completely returned (by the customer).|
|Requires Correction||The order has address lines that can't be parsed automatically and need to be corrected manually.|
// Orders & stock
Once we receive an order for a specific product, the stock from that product will be reserved. If you, for example, have a stock of 17 of a specific product and 2 of these items are sold, we’ll export a stock of 15 to all connected marketplaces and channels. As long as the status is on “ New” or “In Progress” this reservation will remain until the products are “Shipped” (or “Cancelled”). At that time the stock from your product feed (or other stock connection) will become leading again.
// Automated order handling
If a webshop is fully integrated by using our API, by using one of the webshop plugins or by using an ERP integration, the order handling should be fully automated. The backend of your webshop will be the place where the entire order (process) is handled.
When an order is placed on a marketplace, ChannelEngine imports this order with order status ‘ New’. When the order is exported to the webshop and an acknowledgement is sent, the order status will change to ‘In Progress’. From this moment onwards it will follow the regular process of the webshop.
When an order is shipped by the webshop, ChannelEngine will be notified with the carrier and tracking code information. This will change the order status to ‘ Shipped’ and ChannelEngine will export this shipment information to the marketplace. The customer will usually be notified by the marketplace at this point that the order is on its way.
// Manual order handling
If you don’t have your own webshop and only use ChannelEngine to sell on marketplaces, we can’t send the order anywhere and you’ll have to process it in ChannelEngine. You can use a product feed to upload product information we can use for marketplaces. You can create an adjustable feed to manage your stock information, but you can also manage this in ChannelEngine if you have no stock attribute in that feed.
Go to ‘Settings’ > ‘Settings’, where you can select the option ‘ChannelEngine manages stock’ on the bottom of the page in the 'Advanced settings' section. The stock will be automatically updated after a sale, but you can manually adjust the stock of your products in your ‘product detail page’ in ChannelEngine. The orders (including shipments, cancellations and returns) will also have to be managed in ChannelEngine.