As your business grows, it makes sense to start handing some of your work over to specialized companies, like a fulfillment house.
But knowing which services are the best choice in the moment can be a lot more difficult — after all, the changing of the guard should also be accompanied by a significant cost savings or increase in revenue.
There are many stages in the lifecycle of retailers or eCommerce businesses during which adding a 3rd party logistics (3PL) partner makes perfect sense.
Here are just three ways a fulfillment service can help your business in these vital times:
Tighter Inventory Control. Because of the tight, computerized inventory control system available through a dedicated 3PL, you’ll always know exactly how many units of each product are in the warehouse and how many are on order. Real-time reports are easy to generate with industry-leading software and you’ll experience significantly decreased loss with time-sensitive products like supplements and cosmetics.
Improved Shipping Speeds. You may be able to get your products out and into the hands of your customers in about a week, but a 3PL has connections that can move your packages at the speed of Amazon. By redistributing your goods to different warehouses or simply getting better prices on faster shipping options, your customers will receive their orders sooner and be back to order more again and again.
Multi-channel Fulfillment. Having to juggle inventories for different channels, like eBay, Amazon and your online store, can be incredibly challenging without a little help. 3PLs already have the infrastructure in place to draw from a single inventory to manage sales from multiple channels. Never again will you have to worry about selling out on eBay and having to restock that inventory at the same time your Amazon inventory gathers dust. Multi-channel fulfillment means less wasted stock and more money in your pocket.
Along with these benefits, having a 3PL partner is a great way to reduce your overhead, eliminate underutilized warehousing facilities and put your employees back to work doing what they do best. The reporting that a 3PL can produce, along with an expertise in handling reverse logistics, make them a connection that will do nothing but grow your business.
Take a 3PL for a Test Drive
Even if you’re not ready to fully commit to a 3PL partner, you can always take advantage of a limited scope fulfillment service by allowing a 3rd party logistics company handle your holiday sales (or other busy season) overflow. After all, the excess inventory you keep on hand for Black Friday or Cyber Monday doesn’t really need to sit in your storerooms until the big day.
By moving that inventory to a 3PL, you’ll be able to use the space for products that are popular all year long and increase the efficiency of your internal pick, pack and ship team. This is just one of many ways that a fulfillment house can benefit your business all year-long.