Ship to Store Transfer (STST) shipments provide in-store pickup of items that the pickup location did not initially have in stock. Items not in stock are provided as "transfers" that are filled from a supply location, such as a warehouse, to the pickup fulfillment location.
Kibo creates a child shipment that is assigned to the supply location. The supplier will ship these items and they will be routed to the fulfiller. The parent pickup shipment is put in Waiting for Transfer, and from this stage the transfer shipment status can be reviewed.
This guide explains the steps of the STST fulfillment process and demonstrates how to request and fulfill these orders in the Unified Commerce Platform Fulfiller UI.
Transfer Process Steps
The parent shipment goes through its standard pickup process with the addition of the Wait for Transfer step. When inventory is found to be unavailable, this pickup shipment is placed into this state while a transfer shipment is created and shipped.
Once the transfer is shipped, it must be received and validated by the pickup location before it can be marked Complete. The parent shipment only moves on to the Customer Pickup state once all associated transfers have been received (in the case where multiple transfers were required).
Below is a simplified depiction of the process flow for a pickup and its associated transfer. The transfer is created when the pickup location indicates that items are not in stock, and the pickup shipment remains in the Wait for Transfer state until the incoming transfer is received and validated. Then the transfer is marked complete, and the parent shipment continues on to its customer pickup step to finish fulfillment.
Requesting and Processing Transfers
On the fulfiller interface dashboard, the user can see shipments that are assigned to the location in either the Shipment Quick View at the top of the screen or the Assigned Shipments table below the quick view.
In addition to the Transfer Shipments tabs of both tables, pickup shipments that are waiting on their transfers can also be reviewed under the Pickup section of the tables.
Select any pickup shipment and click Finish Fulfilling Shipment to continue with fulfillment.
- Transfers are requested at the Validate Stock step of a pickup shipment.
- Select the In Stock quantity.
- Click Transfer Shipment to request a transfer for the remaining items. This button will appear as long as the available quantity is less than the target quantity of the shipment.
- A pop-up will appear to confirm the transfer request. Enter a reason such as "Item Not Available." These reasons may be customized for the implementation, and not the exact same list as shown here.
- Click Confirm. This will submit the request and the pickup shipment will be sent to the Waiting For Transfer step.
The transfer shipment is assigned to a location. A user at that location can view the assigned transfers and fulfill them.
- The first step is to validate stock by selecting the In Stock quantity.
- If there is enough available stock, click Proceed To Print Packing List. If not, request another transfer.
- Pack the shipment and send it to the fulfiller that requested it, much like a regular shipment.
After the transfer is shipped, it will be listed in the Validate Incoming Transfer section of the fulfiller's Assigned Shipments table. They must acknowledge that they have received it.
- Select an incoming transfer shipment to open the Validate Transfer Stock step.
- Indicate the available quantity that is now in stock from the transfer.
- Click Receive Incoming Items to mark the transfer as Received.
When that is done, the parent pickup can be released to the Provide to Customer state. At this point, an email/SMS notification is triggered to inform the customer that their items are ready to be picked up. When the customer comes into the store:
- Click Customer Accepts Entire Shipment to mark the shipment as Fulfilled, or:
- Click Customer Wants to Cancel to cancel the pickup.
After the fulfiller validates stock on hand, it is possible for the customer to pick up the on-hand items before the transfer has arrived.
When a shipment is in Waiting For Transfer and partial pickup is possible, the on-hand items are displayed in their own section as shown. Click Pickup to split those items into another shipment that can be marked as Fulfilled while the transfer remains pending. The customer can then pick up the transfer items when they arrive.
If Partial Pickup is available, the customer will receive a Partial Pickup Ready email informing them that they can pick up some items. This is a basic example, but the template can be customized per site.
Transfer Email Messaging
In addition to the Partial Pickup email, there are two other email messages (Transfer Shipment Created and Transfer Shipment Shipped) that can be sent during the transfer process to keep the customer up-to-date on the progress of their order and communicate with them that there are some items that must be waited on before the pickup is ready.
Transfer Shipment Created informs the customer that some inventory in their order was not available and is being transferred to their pickup location. This is triggered upon the creation of a transfer shipment.
Transfer Shipment Shipped informs the customer that their transferred items have been shipped and they should be on the lookout for a pickup email soon. This is triggered upon completion of the transfer shipment's fulfillment, before it is received by the pickup location.
All of the email templates are installed on the site theme. Like the Partial Pickup Ready email, there are basic versions that can then be customized with business branding and formatting adjustments. View the transfer templates by going to Site Builder > Editor and then clicking Email Templates under Pages in the navigation menu on the right. The template you select will be displayed on the page.
Transfer Event Notifications
As each of the previous steps are passed through in the Fulfiller Interface, event notifications will be triggered just like they are for standard STH and BOPIS (pickup) orders/shipments. The pickup shipment will send notifications for its standard BOPIS status changes, while additional notifications will be sent for the following transfer shipment events:
- Transfer Shipment Created
- Transfer Shipment Assigned
- Transfer Shipment Shipped
- Transfer Shipment Sent to Customer Care
See Event Notifications for the template that these shipment status change events follow.