Of all the tools and techniques available to the startup and small ecommerce companies, the third party fulfillment center offers possibly the greatest number of advantages with the smallest amount of risk. Fulfillment centers are highly organized, profoundly efficient models of order fulfillment success and professionalism, offering their client ecommerce businesses the opportunity to grow and develop at a much faster pace than the companies could likely achieve working on their own.
Fulfillment service companies work to provide a complete range of “back end” business services to their client companies, including warehousing, climate control storage, shipment preparation, order fulfillment processing, shipment tracking, and in some cases customer service staffing and mail order marketing fulfillment. Third party fulfillment companies are also able to service manshipment tracking, and in some cases customer service staffing and mail order marketing fulfillment. Third party fulfillment companies are also able to service many different clients at the same time, making them reliably flexible enough to handle a great number of orders and order fulfillment needs at the same time.
Some features included in the typical fulfillment service company’s list of services include:
Warehousing – Fulfillment companies routinely manage expansive warehousing facilities that can accommodate all your ecommerce business’ inventory demands under one roof. The warehousing facility is also fully equipped to receive deliveries from your business’ wholesaler or distributor, meaning you don’t have to reship inventory to the fulfillment company’s own warehouse. Once delivery is made you can monitor your inventory’s movement and condition by using tools provided online by the fulfillment service company itself.
Trained Staff – Many ecommerce and small business owners underestimate the costs in time and money that hiring, training and paying a knowledgeable warehouse staff can require. But by outsourcing your order fulfillment needs to a third party fulfillment service company, such obligations are dispensed with for you, as the fulfillment service company provides its own staff. You’ll save money, too, by avoiding payroll taxes and other government regulation compliance expenses.
Customer Service and Mail Order – two very time consuming, labor intensive tasks for your ecommerce business can be shortened and streamlined with a fulfillment service company that provides those services. You simply supply the information to be used in customer service disputes as well as in the promotional materials to be mailed. In both cases, the fulfillment service company sees to the rest, allowing you the time and money to focus on more exciting business pursuits.