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5 Reasons To Outsource Online Fulfillment

Posted On July 6, 2015 by Charles Hsieh

The business world has changed drastically over the past decade. With the ever growing demand of online purchases, customer expectations are higher than ever. Customers want what they want; fast and at the best price. If they don’t get it from your company, there are several competitors in line that will gladly step up to the plate to deliver, exactly how they want it. This squeezes profit margins down to the single digits, so how are online businesses still able to afford outstanding and personalized customer service?

While the goals of reaching new customers and developing new products and services aren’t new, it’s how they’re doing it that’s different. The Internet is driving that rate of growth. Yet, many organizations continue to miss the mark and still use antiquated systems that can’t meet the complex requirements of running an efficient e-business while still providing the modern capabilities of today’s customers. Herein lies an overwhelming argument for these companies to partner with an ecommerce fulfillment provider who can provide solutions to these challenges.

1. Efficiency

A 3PL will invest in the space, staff and technology required to efficiently run a warehouse, even across boundaries in many cases. Now more than ever, they deliver with a high degree of accuracy while keeping costs lower, to the point where in-house logistics becomes illogical for many companies.

2. Scalability

Many ecommerce businesses do not have the scale where they can afford the huge costs of adding warehouse space or cutting edge ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software required to remain competitive. Setting up your own logistics division may require too much fixed expense. A 3PL allows the flexibility to start small and scale up when needed. As computing trends to mobile use, the investment in the latest technology continues which is much easier for larger format, multi-location, third party specialists to accommodate.

3. Dependability

Goods not only need to arrive to the customer when they expect them, they must be delivered on time, every time, exactly how they ordered them. 3PL’s have a turnkey operation with the latest software that delivers detailed measurability to make sure this happens.

4. Fluctuations

You may have been able to easily adjust your website bandwidth to accept more orders during spike seasons, but expanding and contracting your fulfillment to meet changing demands could be more complicated. Since 3PL’s cater to an aggregate of clients at once, they are better equipped to respond quickly to these changes.

5. Customer Service

Ensuring delivery that exceeds customer expectations is only part of the equation, but what happens when a product happens to slip through the cracks and arrive damaged or not to the customer’s liking? As a responsible business you need to have a process in place to respond to these issues which becomes more difficult to manage as your company continues to grow. Most ecommerce fulfillment houses have adapted quickly to the whole new world of reverse logistics and have departments dedicated to making sure the loop is closed with customers. Instead of having to add a department in house, using a third party provider saves your company both time and money that could be better spent towards your other business goals.

Logistics is an area of your ecommerce business that will only become more complex as your orders shift from the physical to an online environment. If your specialty is building quality products and selling them to your customers, doesn’t it make sense to partner with a fulfillment company that specializes in the entire supply chain management cycle? As a business owner it’s hard to be great at everything. Partnering up with another expert in their field could free you to place more focus on your top priorities, creating even more great products for your customers.