Fulfillment services are companies that handle your order fulfillment and shipping. They can store your inventory, pick, pack, and ship orders, and even provide customer support.
The best fulfillment service for you will depend on the type of products you sell and your needs. In this article, we’ll save you time researching by comparing the top order fulfillment services by rates, features and more to help you decide which one is right for your business.
To help you choose the best order fulfillment service for your company, we evaluated dozens of options to find the seven best based on pricing, features, ease of use and customer support.
We have also provided a buyer’s guide with helpful questions to ask yourself before getting started with a fulfillment company.
We evaluated 17 order fulfillment providers and narrowed it down to the 7 best ones based on the factors below. Compare them to find the one that best fits your business needs.
Best Order Fulfillment Services
What Are Order Fulfillment Services?
Order fulfillment services are a crucial part of the business process, and they can be quite complex.
They involve all the steps involved in processing orders for products and services, from ordering to delivery.
Order fulfillment services are often used by retailers and other companies that sell products or services.
They help companies get their products into the hands of customers as quickly as possible, which helps them grow and increase sales.
Some businesses even use order fulfillment services to help them manage their inventory more efficiently. For example,
if a company has many different types of products that it sells, it may want to use an order fulfillment service to help keep track of everything in its inventory so it can ensure that all of its products are accounted for at all times.
Best Fulfillment Services – Introduction
You’ve been running your ecommerce store for some time now, and have spun a lot of plates. You’re now selling multiple products through multiple channels, and processing orders yourself has become a full time job.
It’s time to get some help. Fulfillment services can take the hassle out of fulfilling orders, leaving you free to spend more time marketing, promoting and otherwise growing your business.
The first thing to consider is whether you need a third-party logistics (3PL) provider or a drop shipping service. The two are quite different.
A 3PL provider will send you inventory in bulk, which you can then store in their warehouse until needed; they then manage the distribution process from there. With drop shipping, you don’t hold any inventory at all – the supplier sends items directly to customers as soon as an order is placed on your store.
Both approaches have pros and cons that we’ll discuss later in the guide, but if you’re serious about scaling up your business this is something you’ll need to think about sooner rather than later.
What Are the Best Fulfillment Services?
There are a number of different types of fulfillment services, each suited to particular needs and business models.
Warehouse-based fulfillment services.
These companies offer a range of warehousing and shipping options, from picking and packing to turnkey ecommerce solutions.
You can choose from basic storage to full-service fulfillment for your orders. These companies typically charge fees for storage space, order fulfillment and shipping.
A variety of companies offer these services, including Shipwire (now owned by Ingram Micro), Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) and Red Stag Fulfillment. They typically work with businesses that sell through online marketplaces like Amazon or Walmart Marketplace, or through their own websites.
They typically don’t work with brick-and-mortar retail businesses.
Brick-and-mortar retail stores
Many brick-and-mortar retailers offer pickup in store or ship from store options as part of their omnichannel commerce strategies.
For example, if a customer wants to buy something but the store doesn’t have it in stock, they can ship the item directly to the customer’s home from one of their other locations where it is in stock.
ShipBob is an online shipping platform for merchants and shippers. In addition to making it easy to send packages, the company’s goal is to make shipping more affordable, reducing the financial burden on companies that ship hundreds of packages a day.
The company takes a fee from each shipment, charging a rate between 2-3% depending on the weight of your package. Many companies face a challenge when it comes to shipping their products: They can’t afford to lose money.
Shipping costs are high, and even though they’re covered by insurance, there’s still the chance that something could happen to the product in transit. ShipBob solves this problem by offering a solution that makes it very cheap for merchants to ship their items with insurance.
The service works by enabling merchants to upload their inventory into ShipBob’s system. Once they’ve done this, they can then create orders for customers who have specified a shipping address.
The customer pays for the order and ships it directly from ShipBob. If a package goes missing or gets damaged during shipping, ShipBob will handle any claims or reimbursements made by customers who have purchased items from the merchant through ShipBob.
Fulfillment Warehouses: With ShipBob’s network of warehouses, you can serve customers in all 50 states, and even internationally, from a single account. Their US-based fulfillment centers are strategically located to help you provide fast shipping to your customers on the East Coast, West Coast, and in the heartland.
Inventory Management: Manage your inventory at multiple warehouses from one dashboard. View real-time inventory levels, and get alerts when your inventory gets low.
Multi-Channel Order Fulfillment: ShipBob integrates with your online store and marketplace storefronts like Amazon, eBay, Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce and SquareSpace to enable 2-day delivery to your customers across the country.
Shipping Rates: Get discounted rates on USPS shipping through ShipBob’s partnership with Stamps.com.
Our proprietary technology allows us to receive these rates directly at our warehouses so that we can pass on the savings to you.
Returns Management: A seamless returns process is an important part of any successful ecommerce business model.
Flexible contract terms.
ShipBob offers month-to-month contracts, so you don’t need to worry about being locked into a long-term contract if you decide it’s not the right fit for your business.
Free shipping supplies.
ShipBob provides free shipping materials like boxes, poly mailers, packing slips and labels to its clients.
This is a great benefit because shipping supplies can get expensive, especially if your products require custom packaging. Access to multiple carriers.
ShipBob automatically selects the cheapest carrier based on your location and desired delivery speed and services include UPS, FedEx and USPS.
Affordable pricing structure.
Unlike other 3PLs that charge monthly fees or per-order fees, ShipBob bases its pricing on storage and fulfillment by weight tiers: $5/cubic foot per month up to 300 cubic feet; $4/cubic foot per month between 301-799 cubic feet; $3/cubic foot
You’re looking to grow your business. You’re looking for a partner who can help you get there.
And you want that partner to be as dedicated to their freight management as you are to your business. We were founded on the premise that to be successful in the 3rd party logistics industry, we need to focus on our customers and their needs.
Whether it is our employee’s commitment to customer service or our technology that gives FreightPros agents an edge over their competition – we live and breathe customer service and technology every day. Our mission is simple: To take the pain out of transportation for our customers.
We do this by providing a variety of services, all designed to ensure the seamless movement of your freight:
– Full LTL (Less than truckload) services
– Truckload Brokerage Service
– Expedited Services
– International Shipping Services We’re happy to announce that we’ve launched our new freight shipping website, FreightPros.com.
We’re excited about FreightPros.com because it will enable us to provide you with even more value – more information about the freight services we provide and an easier-to-use experience for getting a quote and booking your shipment.
– Ship Online. Our award-winning platform allows you to handle every facet of your shipping needs from one place.
– Save Money. We work hard to find the best rate for your shipment and get it delivered on time.
– Save Time. You’ll be able to take control of your freight, saving you time and money in the process.
– Track Shipments. View the status of every shipment from pickup to delivery with our easy to use tracking system.
– Advanced Reporting. Managing your shipments efficiently is simple with our advanced reporting functionality.
– Rate Shopping Tool. Get instant rate quotes at no additional cost by using our rate shopping tool.
– Customer Service Team. Our team is standing by ready to assist you when the unexpected happens or if you just need a question answered.
Best for Negotiated Rates: Coyote Logistics.
Best for Custom Shipping Needs: Convoy. Best for Quickest Quotes: uShip.
Best for Guaranteed Pricing: Loadsmart.
Best for Cross-Border Shipments: C.H. Robinson.
FedEx Fulfillment is a simple and cost-effective order fulfillment solution that gives you the ability to store products in FedEx locations across the U.S. and around the world. This means your orders can be processed, packaged and shipped in just a matter of hours.
To get started with FedEx Fulfillment, you must have an account with FedEx Supply Chain. Once you’ve created your account, simply follow these steps:
Step 1 – Create Your Inventory
Upload your product catalog to the FedEx Fulfillment platform to create a complete inventory of all products you’d like to sell online.
You can add individual items or entire product categories at once using our Excel upload template. You can also edit each item’s information, such as SKU, title and price as needed.
Step 2 – Choose Your Locations
Map out where you want your inventory stored. With in-stock products available at over 200 FedEx locations worldwide, we have you covered whether your customers are local or international.
Plus, we’ll keep your inventory balanced across locations for maximum efficiency and lower costs. Step 3 – Sell Your Products Online Sell your products on any online marketplace or ecommerce site — from eBay and Rakuten to Amazon and more.
- Warehousing your goods FedEx will store your products at its facility until an order comes in for them. Because the company owns warehouses across the U.S., you’ll be able to find one wherever your target audience is located.
- Shipping your products When an order comes through, FedEx will ship your product to the end customer so you don’t have to worry about dealing with packaging or shipping logistics yourself.
- Tracking orders for customers FedEx stores detailed information about every order in its system, including tracking details and payment information, which is accessible by your customers through their online account. You can also access this information yourself through FedEx’s online portal or API connections if you have them set up.
- Expanding internationally If you want to sell internationally but don’t have the resources to do it on your own, FedEx can help you
Kitting and light assembly to help you reduce your costs, save time and improve your efficiency.
Customized and retail-ready packaging is available as a value-added service, or can be done by a vendor of your choice. We have a solution for every budget.
Choose from our basic, standard or premium options for the level of customization you prefer. Our flexible pricing offers customized options for you and your business’ specific needs.
Red Stag Fulfillment, a leading third-party logistics provider, announced today that it is offering its services to all ecommerce retailers. “We’re excited to offer our services to the wider ecommerce market,” said CEO Jason Baker.
“Our clients have been thrilled with our services, and we want to share them with other online retailers.” Red Stag Fulfillment is a veteran-owned, woman-owned company located in Knoxville, Tennessee.
The company is focused on providing top-notch service to small- and medium-sized ecommerce businesses.
“We’ve seen rapid growth since we opened our doors three years ago,” said Baker. “We attribute this growth to the service we provide to our clients.”
Red Stag Fulfillment has expanded its warehouse space multiple times over the last few years. The company now occupies more than 100,000 square feet of warehouse space in Knoxville and is looking at second locations in other markets on the East Coast.
“We expect continued growth as we expand into new markets,” said Baker. “We have plans for more warehouses in strategic locations around the country.”
Red Stag Fulfillment is a e-commerce fulfillment warehouse based in Knoxville, TN. We provide warehouse services to merchants selling products online.
Our technology integrates tightly with the top e-commerce platforms like Shopify, Bigcommerce and Magento.
- Shipping & Storage Fees. Dedicated Account Manager.
- Free Shipping Supplies. No Setup Fee.
- Unlimited SKUs. No Long-Term Contracts – Month to Month.
- 30 Day Free Trial. Integrations & Fulfillment Technology.
- Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, WooCommerce and other ecommerce platforms and shopping carts supported. 100+ Shipping Carriers & Services Integrated.
- Custom Client Portal/Control Panel with Real Time Data Analytics. Same Day Shipping Cutoff 2pm EST / 11am PST (M-F).
- Inventory Management Systems & Technology. Online Inventory Management Software.
- Real Time Inventory Control Updates.Barcode Scanning for Inventory Control / Location Tracking.
- Separate Inventory Locations for Perishables, Fragiles and Hazardous Items. Customer Service & Returns Processing Experience.
- US based Customer Service team available daily from 8am – 8pm EST (Monday – Friday) and 9am – 6pm EST on.
High-volume inventory management and storage – Whether you ship 100 or 1 million orders each month, we can handle it.
Flexible payment options – You only pay for what you use when you use it. They never charge long-term contracts or setup fees.
Omni-channel shipping – Ship internationally, through Amazon or via USPS, UPS, FedEx and other carriers.No size or weight limits, no extra fees and no hidden charges.
Comprehensive data tracking – All our services are backed by real-time inventory tracking.
RedHawk Global is a leading provider of cloud-based risk management solutions. Our clients are large, global organizations that operate in complex and highly regulated industries.
With over 500 enterprise customers, RedHawk Global is trusted by the world’s leading companies to reduce risk, lower costs and improve performance.
We provide intelligent business process automation solutions to manage all types of risks including quality, safety, compliance, security, financial and reputational.
We deliver a unique combination of deep expertise in Business Intelligence and Big Data Analytics along with a best-in-class Risk Management Platform to help our customers understand their most critical risks and make better decisions.
RedHawk Global has offices in the U.S., Europe and India. The team at RedHawk Global are your partners in the eCommerce world.
We’ve been in it for over a decade, and we have a lot of experience in all aspects of eCommerce. We’re constantly learning, and we want to share that knowledge with you.
If you have any questions at all, or would like to talk about your business, please e-mail us. We look forward to hearing from you!
-Reduced current credit card processing fees by up to 25%
-No setup fees
-No upfront fees.
-No monthly minimums
-No annual fees
-Next day funding available Payroll Services.
-Automated payroll services for small businesses (1-20 employees).
-Direct deposit or paper checks for employee paychecks and tax payments (941, 940 and 944).
– Complete payroll tax filings, W2s and 1099s with no additional charge.
-Business Funding Options.
-Approvals in 48 hours or less.
-Up to $1M in working capital within 7 days of approval. Equipment Leasing.
-Affordable lease options for new and used office equipment.
Ships-a-lot, an online retailer of ship models and nautical decor, has been in business for more than 10 years. The company had a popular eBay store but decided to open its own website in 2013 to take advantage of ecommerce’s growth.
Since then, Ships-a-lot has seen its sales grow by 30 percent each year, said owner Lisa Parker. She attributes the ecommerce site’s growth in part to the company’s use of social media marketing — especially Facebook — as a way to reach out to new customers and build brand awareness.
“We are addicted to posting on Facebook,” she said. “We post pictures at least once a day.”
In addition to posting photos of Ships-a-lot’s products, Parker said she shares stories about the history of ships and other items the company sells, as well as funny videos from other businesses and sites that appeal to her target audience. Parker said she is careful not to post anything that could be perceived as political or controversial.
We can help you print shipping labels for your packages using our simple, easy-to-use interface. You can also schedule pickups for your shipments as well as see a full history of all the shipments you’ve made through Ships-a-Lot.
You can track all shipments you make through our system by entering the tracking number on the Ships-a-Lot website. You can also use our “track shipment” button to automatically open a window to the carrier’s website so you can get real-time updates on your package’s location.
Our shipping rates are some of the lowest available in the industry, with discounts applied to every shipment you make. Rates are calculated based on weight and destination, so it’s important to accurately enter this information when creating your label.
Our system allows you to generate return labels for any products that need to be returned or exchanged.
The best thing about Ships-a-Lot is the customer service. They always solve problems quickly and take care of customers with a smile.
Ships-a-Lot integrates with everything, so I don’t have to go from one place to another to manage my business. The mobile app lets me scan barcodes when I’m in a rush, which saves me a ton of time.
Ships-a-Lot cuts my shipping costs by up to 50% compared to eBay, Amazon and FedEx.
Fulfillment Services Frequently Asked Questions
What is fulfillment?
Fulfillment is the process of receiving and storing customer orders, then shipping those orders to customers.
How much does Fulfillment cost? The cost of Fulfillment depends on the number of products you want us to store and ship for you, as well as how many orders we receive and ship.
See our pricing page for more information. What can I sell with Fulfillment by Amazon? You can store and ship most items that are new and in their original condition.
You can also offer subscription-eligible items through Subscribe & Save. For more information, see our Selling Policies.
Can I use Fulfillment by Amazon to store my products if I don’t sell them on Amazon? No. If you are not selling your product on Amazon, you cannot use FBA.
Please refer to the Storage Fees section of our Help pages for more information about storing your products at an Amazon fulfillment center.
What is FBA? FBA is a service that helps sellers increase sales by making their products eligible for Amazon Prime and providing access to Amazon’s trusted and secure fulfillment networks.
What is 3rd party fulfillment?
What is 3rd party fulfillment? Third-party fulfillment lets you focus on running your business.
We’ll handle the shipping and logistics of getting your products to your customers.
With third-party fulfillment, you send us your inventory, and we store it in our warehouse. When a customer places an order, we pick, pack, and ship the product to them.
We also take care of any customer service issues related to shipping. You can use third-party fulfillment for orders from your ecommerce store as well as from other online marketplaces like Amazon or eBay.
Benefits of third-party fulfillment
Save time on logistics: We’ll manage your inventory and ship orders for you, so you can focus on other important aspects of running your business.
Save money on storage: Our warehouses have security systems and climate control that meet industry standards. You only pay for the space you use, and there are no setup fees or minimum storage requirements.
Most new and growing businesses using Shopify as their eCommerce platform find it difficult to manage the shipping and returns of their products. We looked at the 3rd party fulfillment options available to brands on Shopify and found that they are limited in the features they provide and very expensive.
What does a fulfillment center do?
What does a fulfillment center do? Fulfillment centers are designed to help ecommerce companies store, pack and ship orders in a more efficient manner.
In many cases, fulfillment centers will also handle returns management so you can focus on other parts of your business.
How do they help? Fulfillment centers offer significant benefits to ecommerce companies:
Automatic order fulfillment: Once an order is placed on your site or through another channel, the fulfillment center will automatically pick, pack and ship it per your instructions. This saves you time and labor costs.
Scalability: Fulfillment centers can quickly scale up their operations to keep up with your growth. This can be particularly important during peak seasons like holiday shopping.
Returns management: Fulfillment centers can handle the logistics involved in processing returns. Some may even offer online returns processing for customers who don’t have time to go to the post office.
A fulfillment center is a warehouse where your inventory is stored and orders are fulfilled. You can use a third-party company to run your fulfillment, or you can do it in-house.
We’ll describe what each one entails and their pros and cons so you can decide which one is right for you.
How do fulfillment services work?
Fulfillment services are companies that will store your products for you at their warehouses and then ship them to your customers when you make a sale. You can use any number of fulfillment services, but they tend to specialize in certain types of products.
For example, some of them only work with food, while others work with books or other types of media or large products like mattresses and furniture. The advantages of using fulfillment services are plentiful:
1. You don’t have to worry about storing the product yourself or finding space for a warehouse.
2. You don’t have to worry about shipping the product because the fulfillment service takes care of all that for you.
3. You get access to bulk discounts on shipping supplies and postage.
4. You can offer free shipping on your website.
5. Your business can scale more easily because you’ll have an order management system and access to inventory management software.
6.You can sell your items on multiple marketplaces instead of just one because your inventory can be synced with the major marketplaces.
How much is Shopify fulfillment?
There are a lot of benefits to using Shopify fulfillment, and it can be a great way to streamline your shipping process. Here’s a breakdown of how it works, and what you’ll need to consider in terms of costs.
Shopify Fulfillment Partners: What You Need to Know Shopify Fulfillment Network is available to any merchants that use the Shopify plan or higher. It’s designed to be simple, affordable and easy to use.
How does Shopify fulfillment work? Shopify Fulfillment Partners pick, pack and ship your orders for you, freeing yourself up from having to do it yourself. The process works like this:
1.You send your inventory directly to the locations where you want orders fulfilled.
2. When an order is placed on your store, the closest warehouse will automatically receive a notification and get started on fulfilling it.
If customers buy multiple products, they might be shipped from different warehouses depending on what’s in stock where (this shouldn’t affect shipping times). When the products are ready to ship, they’ll be sent directly to your customer.
If a product runs out of stock in one location, the other locations will automatically ‘back
How do fulfillment centers make money?
Your items are stored in a distribution center, picked and packed and shipped to your customer. The cost of the storage and pick-and-pack and shipping is all built into the price you pay.
Amazon takes a commission on every sale, but they also charge to store your inventory in their fulfillment centers. This fee is based on the size and weight of each item, so it can vary from product to product.
(Note: Amazon has different fulfillment services for inventory that is not sold on Amazon.) You also pay for shipping either to or from your warehouse or a third party seller’s warehouse. If Amazon is handling shipping for you, that cost is included in the FBA fees.
If you are selling through another marketplace such as eBay, you may have a separate agreement with that marketplace for shipping costs. You should be aware of these additional costs before making your decision about whether to sell through multiple online stores.
What Are The Different Types Of Fulfillment Services?
The truth is that not all third party logistics providers are created equal. It’s important to understand what type of provider you need before starting your search in order to make sure you find the best match for your business.
Here are the three different types of fulfillment services that you can choose from:
Blind Fulfillment – Blind fulfillment companies will pick, pack, and ship products for you without ever showing or revealing your brand to your customers. This type of fulfillment service is ideal for companies who don’t have the time or resources to focus on shipping themselves but don’t want their customers to know that they’re using a 3PL (third party logistics provider).
Branded Fulfillment – Branded fulfillment services will pick, pack, and ship products while allowing the opportunity to provide some level of branding during this process. This type of fulfillment service is ideal for companies who want some level of control over how their products are branded in transit and stored on a warehouse shelf.
Hybrid Fulfillment – Hybrid fulfillment is the combination of blind and branded fulfillment services. This means that orders from certain channels will be picked, packed, and shipped without revealing you as the seller.
1. Types Of Fulfillment Services Transportation
The most important factor in shipping is the time it takes to get a package to the customer. If a shipper can be successful in this area, the chances of having repeat customers are great.
The following information will help you understand the different ways a product can be shipped to its destination and how it can affect your business. The most used way to ship products is by ground or surface transportation.
This method of shipping is usually cheaper than other forms of shipping, but it also takes longer to deliver. Many companies use this method if there is no rush for a delivery.
Air transportation is another common way of shipping products. Usually air transportation is more expensive than ground transportation, but if there are time constraints for delivery, air shipping may be the better option.
Intermodal freight transportation involves using more than one mode of transportation during your shipment. For example, when you need to ship items from Dallas, Texas to Miami, Florida you may want to consider using trucks and railroads as two modes of transportation for your products.
By doing so, you can save money without losing any time in the process.
2. Types Of Fulfillment Services Warehouse and Distribution
Distribution Blanket Wrap Delivery: Blanket wrap delivery is a type of blanket-wrapped moving service that can be hired for a full-size household move or just a single piece of furniture. Some furniture stores use blanket-wrapped delivery services to offer their customers this feature.
Because the company’s trucks are climate controlled, goods such as pianos or fine art can also be transported safely with this service.
Door To Door Delivery: Door to door delivery is when goods are shipped from the point of origin to the point at which they will be delivered by the carrier.
It is also called door-to-door delivery or door to door shipping. The term “door” refers to any place where goods may be picked up or delivered (such as an airport, port, train station or truck terminal).
Direct Mail Fulfillment: Direct mail fulfillment services can provide you with the type of support that you need in order to send out a large mailing campaign.
3. Types Of Fulfillment Services Financial and Information
Full Product Fulfillment: This is the most common kind of service, in which you ship products to a customer’s door, and then take a cut of the revenue from each sale.
The advantage of this style is that it’s usually pretty cost-effective for the company, since it doesn’t require much extra work by anyone involved. The disadvantage is that it requires you to own a warehouse and stock it with inventory, or pay someone else to do so.
Drop Shipment: This method involves actually delivering products to customers through postal mail or standard carriers like UPS and FedEx. The advantage is that you don’t have to worry about handling inventory — companies can just send you an order and rely on you to ship the merchandise.
The disadvantage is that you have no control over what customers receive; if they have any problems with their purchase, they may call or write, but they’re not going to know where to go for help if something goes wrong (unless they’ve thought ahead and signed up for a shipping label or information package).
What Are the Benefits of Using an Order Fulfillment Service?
Creating an ecommerce business is a lot of work. So once you’ve launched your store, the last thing you want to do is have to think about inventory, shipping and fulfillment logistics.
That’s where an order fulfillment service comes in. An order fulfillment service is basically a third-party company that handles everything from picking and packing your products to shipping them out to customers.
They take care of all the boring logistical tasks involved in running an online business, freeing you up to focus on other aspects of your business. While there are pros and cons to using a service like this, here are some reasons why you might want to consider it: *
Cost savings: Most companies will come with a price tag, but many offer volume discounts.
As long as you’re ordering enough products to make it worth their while, they’ll be able to provide a cheaper option than if you were doing everything by yourself.
Easy-to-use website: If you’ve never worked with an order fulfillment service before, it can be hard to know exactly what they expect from your website.
A third-party provider will take care of all the basic website requirements so that the process is simple for customers and easier for you.
1. Benefits of Using an Order Fulfillment Service Business Growth
When you start your own ecommerce business, you’ll likely think about the best way to ship your orders. You could handle it all yourself, but using an order fulfillment service can help your business grow and thrive.
Business Growth: When you’re running an ecommerce business on your own, you have to juggle a lot of duties. As your company grows, it’s easy to fall behind in certain areas.
This can leave you with a pile of shipping orders that need to go out right away. Rather than letting these orders sit around and potentially angering your customers, hire someone else to take care of them for you.
Here are some benefits of using an order fulfillment service:
You’ll save time. If you’re running a small business, you probably don’t have a warehouse full of people waiting around to fulfill orders.
You may only have one person working for the entire company. It’s easy to understand why this could get overwhelming quickly.
By hiring someone else to handle the fulfillment process for you, you can ensure that orders will get shipped in a timely manner without having to do any additional work.
2. Benefits of Using an Order Fulfillment Service Expand Your Business to International Level
If you are an ecommerce business owner and have been in the business for a while, you will realize that order fulfillment is a lot more challenging than it seems. With stiff competition and endless expansion in the market, there’s a need for every e-tailer to think about ways of improving their service delivery.
It’s difficult to run an ecommerce business independently, because you may not have the expertise or resources to do everything effectively. As such, it makes sense to outsource your order fulfillment process to a third party logistics company like ShipBob.
This way, you’re able to improve efficiency and reduce costs while serving your customers better.
Here are some of the benefits of using an order fulfillment service: Expand your business to international level. Shipping internationally can be expensive and complex if you handle it yourself.
You will have to deal with customs clearance, import duties, and long shipping times among other things. An order fulfillment service provider has experience shipping internationally, which makes it easier for them to handle any unforeseen issues that may arise during the process.
They also have warehouses in various locations around the world which allows them to get your products closer to your customers so they can receive them within a shorter time frame.
3. Benefits of Using an Order Fulfillment Service Low Warehouse Expenses
Fulfillment services can help your business with a number of tasks and functions.
They can help you with everything from organizing and storing inventory to picking, packing, and shipping. You don’t have to do any of the work yourself when you use a fulfillment service.
While they handle all of the details, you can focus on other things like growing your business and providing higher quality customer service. It can be expensive to start up your own warehouse and hire employees to manage it.
When you work with a fulfillment service, you can save money because they are already set up. They have warehouses that they use to store inventory and they have employees who will handle your orders for you.
You don’t have to pay for any of this when you use their services.
Save Time: Outsourcing order fulfillment will save you time because it allows you to focus on other aspects of your business.
A fulfillment center is going to take care of all the details for you so you don’t have to worry about storing inventory or packing boxes and shipping them out yourself.
What Should You Look for When Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company?
Choosing the right fulfillment company is a big decision, not only because of the financial investment involved, but also because the best fulfillment companies act as partners to their ecommerce clients, helping the businesses they serve to grow and succeed. When evaluating potential fulfillment partners, look for a company that will be easy to work with and that has an infrastructure you can rely on.
This means a company that:
1.Provides transparency into its processes and technology
2.Offers real-time communications and notifications.
3.Demonstrates commitment to your success
You’ll notice these features in a high-quality vendor’s communications with you during the sales process — so pay attention to how your questions are answered, how proposals are presented and how your vendor handles requests or changes throughout the discovery process.
Also consider what happens if something goes wrong or you need help quickly: What is the customer service experience like?
A quality partner will be able to demonstrate its commitment to communication and service, both in words and in actions.
1. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Range of Services Offered
Ecommerce fulfillment companies, also known as drop shippers and order fulfillment centers, help to ensure that you’re able to meet your customers’ expectations. These are the companies that get your products from the manufacturer, warehouse and ship them directly to customers.
There are a number of benefits to using an ecommerce fulfillment company. For one thing, they’re experts at shipping, so you don’t have to worry about all the details.
Some companies specialize in certain types of products or will service all your needs. They may also be able to offer some other services such as marketing or branding assistance.
You’ll want to choose a company that offers the following: A wide range of product categories. For example, you might not need an ecommerce fulfillment company for every type of product you sell, but if you sell furniture and bedding or pet supplies, it makes sense to use a company that can handle those items as well.
Likewise, if you sell food products like spices or cooking oils, you want a company that can deliver those items as well. Accessible shipping options.
You don’t want to deliver something heavy if there’s no way it can be delivered without damaging the package or incurring additional costs.
2. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Cost Transparency
Choosing an ecommerce fulfillment company is a multifaceted decision, but the main thing you need to consider is cost. As with most things in business, there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution for fulfillment.
But like all businesses, companies that provide ecommerce order fulfillment services want to make money from their work. That means they’re going to charge you for what they do — and it can be hard to figure out exactly how much they’ll charge you.
Many orders are filled by dropshippers — manufacturers or wholesalers who will ship out products to your customers on your behalf. You may find dropshippers by researching on the web or connecting with them at trade shows.
They’re often very willing to help new sellers get their businesses off the ground. However, if you’re selling enough product that a drop shipping arrangement isn’t working well for you, you’ll need to find a third-party logistics provider (3PL).
These companies fulfill the role of storing your inventory and shipping it out when orders come in. Many also offer other services like customer support, returns management and even product photography.
3. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Scalability and Startup-Friendly
You’ve got a lot of decisions to make when you’re getting an ecommerce business off the ground. Choosing a fulfillment company is one of them, and it can seem like a daunting task if you’re not sure where to start.
The good news is that there are thousands of companies out there, and they’ll all compete for your business by offering great service, competitive pricing and flexibility. You just have to know what to look for.
The main priority should be scalability. If your business doesn’t grow, it will die.
But if your fulfillment company doesn’t offer enough flexibility and growth potential, your business could be in trouble as well. Ideally, you want a fulfillment solution with tons of room to grow, even if you don’t need that much room right now.
You also want something friendly to startups — ideally, something with a program designed specifically for startup companies of your size (and budget). A provider that’s willing to work with you on an individual basis could be invaluable for your fledging enterprise.
Finally, it’s important to invest in a fulfillment company that offers great customer service and excellent communications. After all, you’ll be working closely with these people — their success is yours!
4. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Easy Onboarding Process
Choosing an ecommerce fulfillment company doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. Whether you’re moving away from self-fulfillment or selecting a new partner, you can ease the transition with these tips for finding a fulfillment company that’s going to work for your business.
If you’re currently using a fulfillment partner, do you like them? You probably still have some pain points, but overall, is your experience positive?
If so, it might not be worth moving from your current partner to another. If you’re handling order fulfillment on your own — or with help from friends and family — it’s important to understand the costs of self-fulfillment before making the leap to working with a fulfillment center.
What are your current costs for packing supplies, warehouse space, shipping and labor?
Determine Your Fulfillment Needs Before you start looking for an ecommerce fulfillment company, determine exactly what you need: How many orders do you ship per month? How much storage space will you require? Do you anticipate any seasonal spikes Aspects of an Ecommerce Fulfillment Partner You May Want to Consider:
5. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Customer Service
Whether you’re just getting started or you’ve been in business for a while, choosing the right ecommerce fulfillment company is one of the most important decisions you have to make.
Once you have your products in stock and you’re ready to fill your first order, which fulfillment company are you going to trust with the delivery of your brand’s promise? Choosing the right ecommerce fulfillment company is critical because it can make or break your business.
After all, every order filled incorrectly is another unhappy customer, and we all know that it costs more to acquire new customers than it does to keep existing ones. You should find a fulfillment service provider that understands what’s important to you and acts accordingly so that every order is fulfilled quickly, accurately and cost-effectively.
This will be different for every business; what’s important for one entrepreneur may not be as vital for another.
6. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Proper Integrations
Any fulfillment company can do the job. They’ll pick and pack your orders, but only a handful of them will make sure that every aspect of your business is working together.
In order to make sure that you’re getting the best service possible, here are a few factors to keep in mind when choosing a fulfillment company:
Integrations – This is by far the most important factor in choosing a fulfillment company. If your ecommerce platform (BigCommerce, Magento, etc.) or payment processor (Stripe, Authorize.net) isn’t supported by the fulfillment company, there’s no point in even considering them.
This doesn’t just mean that they have an integration with one of these services either. Proper integrations offer things like automated inventory updates, so when an order comes in, it automatically updates your inventory levels on all platforms so you don’t have to worry about overselling.
Proper integrations also automatically send tracking information so you don’t have to email customers each time an order ships out.
Cost – It may seem obvious, but you want to pay as little as possible for order fulfillment and shipping costs while making sure that you’re getting proper service and product quality.
There’s nothing wrong with negotiating prices with potential vendors until you’re happy with what they
7. Choosing an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company Management Dashboards
Delivery is one of the main services provided in e-commerce, at the heart of which is logistics, i.e. inventory, storage and delivery to the customer.
Whether you are a large business or a small enterprise, you need to deliver your products to your customers timely and accurately. For this reason, an e-commerce company should choose the best delivery service to use for their business.
E-commerce isn’t just about selling products online anymore. It’s also about how you fulfil those orders and get them delivered quickly and efficiently to your customers wherever they are located around the world.
To meet customers’ expectations of fast delivery, many ecommerce companies choose to work with third party logistics providers (3PL) that have warehouses across the country and can easily ship orders out on time without any issues or delays.
In addition to reducing overhead costs associated with shipping products directly from their warehouse locations on site there are other benefits like personalization as well as better customer service experiences when using these types of companies instead of managing it all by yourself!
Best Fulfillment Services – Wrapping Up
You’re in the e-commerce game for the long haul. So, you need a provider that’s going to stick with you as your business grows.
As we looked at in our last post, you need to make sure that the fulfillment company you choose can meet your needs. Not only now, but in the future as well.
It’s important to remember that every business is different and so is every fulfillment company. Every company has their own cost structure and service levels.
You need to look at all of these factors when deciding on a 3PL (Third Party Logistics) provider. Why? Because what works for one e-commerce retailer may not work for another.
For example, let’s say you want to start selling a new product line that requires kitting or custom packaging in order to ship. You would want a fulfillment provider with the ability to handle this task efficiently and affordably.
You also want to make sure that your provider can expand as your business expands. If you’re currently shipping 100 orders per day, it doesn’t make sense to sign on with a 3PL who can only handle 200 orders per day.
There are many companies out there that can scale with your business.