Who is Vistaprint?

Vistaprint, a Cimpress company, helps small business owners with modern, personalized marketing. The company has an extensive range of marketing products for printing; from business cards to stickers and clothing and bags. These products are sent to the printer from different storage locations. This case relates to the storage location in Venlo, the Netherlands.

What is the challenge?

Vistaprint’s storage in Venlo has 500 to 600 unique products in its product range (SKUs). To prevent the storage location from suddenly running out of stock, Vistaprint wants to be able to predict what the consumption of the SKUs will be. With this insight, Vistaprint can, for example, respond to the predictions for six months in the future. This is necessary because many SKUs are made by Chinese manufacturers and have a longer delivery time.

Some peaks in the future are easier to predict, such as a peak around Christmas related products at the end of the year. However, Vistaprint noticed that the forecasts from their marketing team are generally too inaccurate and not complete enough to properly anticipate the future market.

Vistaprint asked Squadra: Machine Learning Company to come up with an AI solution that can make accurate and complete predictions. This project has been tested at the Venlo location, with a view to expansion possibilities to other locations in the future.

How does Squadra: Machine Learning Company offer the solution?

Squadra: Machine Learning Company has developed a software tool with a forecast model to predict the consumption levels of Vistaprint Venlo. Data from the past 4 years has been used. Based on this history, the software recognizes patterns and predicts the future based on these trends.

Vistaprint provides data every week, after which our software will make predictions. Vistaprint itself can view the data and trend graphs on a dashboard. We also send weekly alerts with predictions and adjustments for new data.

Trend chart dashboard

What is the result?

Through this project, Vistaprint Venlo has an accurate and complete picture of the future trends regarding their SKU usage. This means that they are well prepared for the future market, are always well stocked and have sufficient time to order from Chinese manufacturers. The project is still under development. As next steps, Squadra: Machine Learning Company could build an application that allows Vistaprint to determine when they run a run. It can also be expanded to other locations.

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