Outsourcing ecommerce warehousing and order fulfillment to third party logistics providers (3PL) is a popular solution which can bring several benefits to your business.
Please find a list of important factors you should consider when selecting the right partner for your 3PL needs:
What business goals do you have when looking for a fulfillment partner?
What is the characteristics of my products? Do they require any special processing?
What WMS (warehouse management software) is the warehouse using?
Do you have a flexible contract agreements?
What are your monthly order minimums?
Do you provide inventory management & control services?
How quickly will my inventory be received & ready to ship out?
What happens if my inventory arrives at your warehouse(s) already damaged?
What valu-added services do you offer e.g. kitting, labeling, custom boxes, inserts?
Do you offer Returns processing services?
Do you offer multiple shipping carriers to choose from?
Do you provide international shipping?
Do you have a risk free trial period so we can test out your services?
Do you offer free account setup?
Do you offer free system integration?
Do you provide shipping discounts?
In all, a 3PL can be a huge time and budget saver for start-up and growing businesses, just be sure to find the right partner for your business needs.