The world is continually changing, and the methods of buying and selling products are a part of that change. Traveling to a store for merchandise is rapidly being replaced with online purchasing, better known as eCommerce. Consumers want the convenience of shopping from their home, fast delivery of merchandise, and an easy way to return the product if it doesn’t meet their expectations.
This change in purchasing methods requires a shift in the eCommerce fulfillment solutions of the past. Store replenishment processes that included picking at the case level are being replaced with processes that support individual unit picking. eCommerce orders typically require more “touches,” which places more emphasis on the importance of efficient operations to handle increased throughput and stringent delivery windows. Using our six-step DesignBuild process, the engineers at AHS LLC partner with our customers to design the optimal robotics for eCommerce fulfillment to meet their specific needs.
Manual Robotics Process for eCommerce
A manual process is recommended for businesses just entering the marketplace, daily activity levels are low, acquiring capital dollars is difficult, picking is mainly at the bulk level, or there is uncertainty regarding future activity levels.
- Carton Flow Rack
- Autonomous Mobile Robots
Semi-Automated Robotics Process for eCommerce
A semi-automated process is the next step in the progression from a manual process. As daily activity levels increase, more efficient methods are required to handle the increased throughput and service level requirements. The transition from manual to semi-automated involves the introduction of conveyors, packaging equipment, and a more advanced warehouse control system.
- Robots/Autonomous Mobile Robots
- Pick/Put to Light
- Pick Modules
Automated Robotics Process for eCommerce
Automated processes are employed in fulfillment centers that have high daily volume demands consistently. They utilize many of the components of a semi-automated system but replace labor-intensive operations (such as picking) with highly efficient machines. Using goods-to-person technologies such as roboticss and autonomous robots for eCommerce; reduces order cycle times even further than a semi-automated solution but at a higher capital cost.
Depending on the need(s), one or more of these technologies may be used in a eCommerce solution.
Learn more about the technologies utilized and our partners involved during the entire process from conception to completion.
Exotec is an order picking solution based on fleets of robots evolving in the three dimensions with the ability to move 4x faster and 5x higher than the industry standard.
Autonomous Mobile Robot
AMRs use sensors, cameras, barcodes and/or lasers to find their way through a warehouse environment to retrieve materials as needed with precision, accuracy, and speed.
Crossbelt, bomb bay, and tilt tray sorters operate under related principles, and each type of sorter has the same base: a looped track with individual carriages riding on the track. Each sorter is pre-programmed with the target destination of each product and can trigger the sortation mechanism when the goods arrive at its designed divert point.
With the ability to rapidly transport product and both sort and track progress throughout a facility, conveyor systems remain one of the most popular material handling technologies.
These systems and conveyors are designed and manufactured for use in specialized facilities that conduct unique processes. Some examples include spiral, telescopic, flexible, and drive-out conveyors.
Carton Flow Rack
Also known as “flow racks”, the carton flow rack storage method uses rollers or wheels as well as gravity to transfer cases from one end of the shelving or rack module to the other.