Selecting the right third-party logistics (3PL) company to accommodate your ecommerce fulfillment can definitely be a task. Eager customers have truly shifted the retail industry in the last few years and now expect their items to be delivered just as quick as they bought them, with exceptional customer service attached. This can be difficult to achieve if you don’t have the bandwidth and capacity to meet the demand. Handling customer service and selling your products in your garage or guest bedroom will no longer work. This is where a reliable 3PL partner comes into play.
A huge benefit in using a 3PL is being able to house your inventory in our warehouses. Many other benefits include:
- Reducing shipping costs. You are able to do this by leveraging the company’s distribution network and cheaper freight rates.
- Boosting productivity by no longer working on tasks related to your ecommerce fulfillment strategy. You will have more time to work on your business (branding, expansion and managing your processes) rather than in your business (logistics and fulfillment).
- Reliable warehousing with distribution hubs across the country. This advantage comes without owning any responsibilities attached to a lease or mortgage on a commercial building.
- Automated processes. By using a 3PL partner, you leverage the company’s systems, helping you control your entire inventory and logistics strategy from within a custom-designed software program.
Top priorities: What to Look for in a 3PL?
There are many factors in choosing the 3PL that’s best for you. A good 3PL should be able to provide several resources as it pertains to storage, ecommerce fulfillment, customer service, branding, expertise in logistics and robust technology.
At Fulfyld, we offer fulfillment services for every step of the supply chain. Be sure that the 3PL you choose can mark off each of these things as something they offer:
Verify the size of the fulfillment center as well as their ability to scale when choosing a 3PL. You need a partner that has the capacity to effectively scale their operations to accommodate every fulfillment need for your company.
For every Fulfyld customer, we provide secure storage and warehousing for all your products. Since we are a 3PL company focused on ecommerce fulfillment, we handle everything from storage, to picking, packing and shipping your ecommerce orders.
Robust Technology and Software
A good 3PL should have the technology to provide you with the latest updates on your orders and in-depth analytics on the management of your inventory.
At Fulfyld, we have vigorous technology and software to integrate with any platform and also host open APIs so that all of your orders and tracking information automatically deliver real-time updates. You are provided with simple, straightforward data that explains every detail about your order processing, inventory, etc.
Shipping Options and Discounts
Shipping is obviously a very important factor when choosing a 3PL because not only do you want your products to get to your customers in a timely manner, you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg doing it. A good 3PL that ships a massive amount of packages a year will be able to negotiate shipping discounts for you with better rates than if you were to ship alone.
With Fulfyld, we offer an affordable flat rate that includes shipping costs with major carriers like UPS, FedEx, USPS, etc. We also offer 2-day shipping and have a longer shipping window to get packages to their destination, so location will never be an issue.
If our customers have an order come into our system by 2pm, it gets packaged and processed that day. Unlike most of our competitors, their cut off time is noon. This gives us a couple more hours to process your products and get them out the same day.
Customer service varies from 3PL to 3PL. However, that should not be the case. With fulfillment being the last touchpoint between you and your end customer, you and your 3PL should always be on the same page. Some logistics companies only provide email or chat support. Is that really the best way to manage your entire supply chain? Personally, I don’t think so. Your fulfillment company should work for you, not the other way around.
Be sure to confirm that the 3PL you choose will customize their processes to fit your business model and needs. Unless you are a global 3PL, 99% of people don’t know your business. The only way to differentiate your company is to differentiate your product when its delivered.
At Fulfyld, we have a devoted support team to handle all email, live chat and phone services. We provide a personal customer service option if needed and can integrate this service with your platform to answer chat messages. Additionally, we can also create a distinguished phone number for phone support as well.
Your 3PL should make returns easier on you, not bring more stress. Fulfyld has a customized returns process based on your specific needs to make returns easier and ultimately speed up the process. We can handle all returns at our fulfillment center, or the items can be shipped back to you if you’d like.
We also have the option to automate your inventory management by sharing tracking information for returns and providing prepaid return labels if necessary. Again, we are here to make ecommerce fulfillment easier for you.
Company Reputation and Partnerships
When searching for a 3PL, make sure that this company has the credentials and expertise to provide steady and dependable ecommerce fulfillment services. At Fulfyld, we emphasize quality over quantity. We are very strategic in our partnerships to make sure its beneficial for both parties, specifically with customers in the logistics industry. We have partners in several different industries and a proven track record of meeting and exceeding client expectations while providing efficient service.
It is crucial to go with a 3PL provider that can keep up with the demand as your company grows. At Fulfyld, we have the operations and technology in place to do just that. Should there ever be a need to scale down, we can do that as well without any hiccups in efficiency.
We have a very diverse clientele base that ranges from startups to large retailers needing enterprise support. No matter the size of your company, we can swiftly adjust to fit the needs of your business without ruining your effectiveness.
Level of Expertise
Expertise in logistics, and specifically ecommerce, is vital when determining a 3PL. The last thing you want is for the company you choose not to have any true experience in the growing pains of logistics along with the ins and outs of the ecommerce fulfillment industry. With Fulfyld, you are choosing a company that has a wealth of knowledge and experience in ecommerce fulfillment and logistics. We offer world-class support to our customers and provide you with a skillful, dedicated account manager that is accessible to you at all times. From integrating your platform with our software to streamlining your company’s entire process, we are here to help.
We make sure that our team is equipped and trained with the best practices in warehouse management to accelerate ecommerce fulfillment. Unlike many of our 3PL competitors, we have been and will continue to be focused solely on ecommerce. As experts at e-commerce fulfillment, we can give the strategic insight and services you need for success. Order fulfillment services are the core of our business, so you can be certain that we’ll handle your e-commerce fulfillment for you.
When choosing a quote, it’s important to go with the best company and quote for your needs. Though the cheapest option isn’t always the best, the most expensive option doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get the best quality and value for your business needs either.
Thoroughly consider what all is included in each quote you get and go with the one that offers the best value for your fulfillment services. While selecting the right 3PL can be overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. At Fulfyld, we offer competitive flat-rate pricing with no hidden fees, ever. Unlike some companies, we are straight-forward with our pricing. As you grow and increase the number of packages you ship every month, we are able to offer you lower rates on your storage and shipping.
Contact us today to help you choose the best fulfillment solutions for your company. As a top company in ecommerce fulfillment offering unique fulfillment services, we’ll help you grow your brand and let you focus on running your business.