Today, businesses need efficient order fulfillment management more than ever. With the rise of online shopping, consumers now demand faster delivery at lower shipping fees. If your business does not meet these challenges head on, you can expect a fall in sales and even a dent in your reputation. To avoid this, you need to have an effective order fulfillment strategy.
One solution you can look into is relying on outsourced fulfillment management. This means letting third-party logistics (3PL) companies handle your order processing and delivery. Many businesses are considering this option over in-house fulfillment operations because of its convenience and efficiency. Its other benefits can help your business grow in many ways as well.
Here are some of the reasons why you should consider outsourcing to address your fulfillment challenges:
Lower and controlled costs
Working with an external, third-party logistics company can help you cut back on expenses. Because they already have professionals dealing with orders, storage, and shipment, you don’t need to hire and train a team of your own. Also, you will have no need to invest in facilities like warehouses and warehousing equipment.
Aside from cost savings, many fulfillment service providers have substantial shipping volume capacities, great integration systems, and a wide network of partners. This means that they can negotiate prices and work with carrier partners for better shipment costs and more accurate delivery times.
Since your fulfillment needs are in the hands of outsourced workers, you have more time and resources to spare. No longer do you have to handle day-to-day product delivery deadlines and other shipping details. You can allot more time and manpower on marketing, sales, and other core aspects of your business.
However, since you will be passing on your merchandise and orders to a third-party logistics company, make sure to select one that is dependable. Choosing a 3PL company that is inefficient can result in delayed shipments, damaged or lost goods, and other inconveniences.
A more effective warehousing network
Businesses like ecommerce shops need proper storage areas for their products year-round. During peak shopping seasons, warehouses are a must for your fulfillment orders. However, these facilities may house little or no inventory at all during certain slow seasons, which can make business owners rack up expenses. If you outsource your fulfillment services, you can eliminate the need for renting warehouses yourself. Also, the billing costs charged by third-party providers are often based only on the amount or number of products you store.
Another good benefit of outsourcing your fulfillment management is the wider network of consumers your products can reach. Customers live in different locations, leading to varying shipment costs and delivery times. With the help of the right 3PL company, you can position your inventory in multiple locations for faster and more cost-efficient shipping to end-buyers.
Access to better technology
Many professional fulfillment service providers use the latest equipment, software, and other technologies. By outsourcing your fulfillment, you can gain access to these tools that can help you make faster, cheaper deliveries. Moreover, you don’t even have to invest a great deal of money to tap into the aforementioned tools.
Relying on outsourcing for addressing fulfillment challenges might sound risky for some. After all, you will not be fully in charge of your company’s order logistics, packaging, and shipment processes. But clear and continuous communication with your chosen third-party logistics company can solve this challenge. As such, make sure that the company you select is professional, reliable, and offers the best range of options that you can really take advantage of.