There has been a sharp rise in third-party logistics companies in recent years as the popularity of online eCommerce businesses continues to drastically increase. With online retail being a constantly expanding industry and peoples expectations of fast, reliable shipping higher than ever, 3PL’s have been stepping in as ‘partners’ to help eCommerce brands scale with ease.
By providing access to the necessary resources, great shipping rates, and efficient order fulfilment practices, 3PL companies have been able to consistently help grow eCommerce businesses faster than if they were to do it on their own. For a more in depth look at how a 3PL can help you achieve this, check out our blog ‘Fulfilment Centre (3PL) Vs In-House Fulfilment: What’s Best?‘.
If you’re looking for a quick read, below is a brief outline of just some of the many ways working with a 3PL can help you grow your eCommerce Business and take your sales to the next level.
1. Lower Shipping Costs
3PL’s provide many services for eCommerce businesses, picking and packing, storage, returns, shipping etc. these things are crucial and necessary, but it is their ability to save you money that is arguably their best asset.
By partnering with multiple courier companies and utilizing their various services, 3PL’s are able to provide eCommerce brands with cost effective shipping options on an order-to-order basis.
Yes, saving your business money is an integral part of 3PL services, but if that’s number 1 on the list, then getting your time back must be number 2. One of the core reasons 3PL’s even exist is that small business owners and eCommerce brands simply can’t do it on their own. They end up working for their business instead of on it, doing their own order fulfilment, managing stock, buying packaging etc.
When these tasks are outsourced to a quality 3PL, you can get back to doing the growth work for your business, focusing more on things like advertising, networking and managing your online presence.
3. Increased Fulfilment Efficiency
It goes without saying that picking and packing every order yourself is not ideal for any eCommerce business owner. Even hiring someone, or a small pick and pack team is not a long-term solution. Unless you’re Amazon, with access to large warehouse spaces, resources and staff to fulfil your orders efficiently and consistently, this system just isn’t viable for a growing business.
A high quality 3PL, will provide all of these services for likely less than you would have to spend to do it yourself. That, combined with their industry knowledge and trained staff, can help significantly increase the rate at which your orders are received, processed and shipped.
4. High Level Inventory Management
Technology has come a long way in the world of logistics and warehousing. Using up-to-date software is absolutely crucial in this age of rapid technological development. The top 3PL’s are constantly assessing and streamlining their inventory management practices and software to ensure that stock is managed efficiently and is well taken care of. For example, Malpa 3PL uses sophisticated WMS (Warehouse Management Software) with advanced routing features to successfully keep track of, manage your stock, and ship your orders.
3PLs possess a large pool of resources at prices that the average person simply won’t have access to. Without significant capital to start off with, buying in bulk is not an option for most growing eCommerce businesses. Therefore, the cost of things like packaging, tools, void fill, and even shipping are much higher and inconsistent.
By partnering with a 3PL, eCommerce brand owners can access this pool of resources at a fraction of the cost. Unlocking a wider range of packaging options, shipping rates and courier services, storage techniques, staff and the list goes on.