Knowing how you are going to fulfill orders is one of the most important aspects to starting an online business. You’ve got to choose the best way for you and your business. Understanding the fulfillment process will help you to decide how you want your business to run and how you want your orders to be fulfilled.
What is In-House Fulfillment?
When just starting your business, I’m sure you will be fulfilling orders in-house. It’s simple to set up a workspace in your living room, garage, or even bedroom. You might need to spend some money upfront for tools and supplies but you’ll find this to be easiest and fastest way to fulfill, at least at first.
Now some businesses will thrive with just using in-house fulfillment as their permanent way to fulfill. If the company has highly customized products, low order volume, or only seasonal shipments. But on the other hand, having in-house fulfillment could completely sabotage your business’s growth. It can get to a point where it becomes virtually impossible to manage as soon as your order volume begins to increase.
When Can In-House Fulfillment be Hurtful not Helpful?
Packing and shipping boxes is not for everyone. Let alone for a business owner who could be using their time much more wisely. You could be responding to customers, adding to your inventory, talking to vendors, or expanding your marketing efforts. There is so many things to do and you, as the business owner, do not need to be getting your fingers sticky from the tape of the 100th package of the day.
There are quite a few reasons to not do in-house fulfillment. From your space rapidly diminishing to lack of access to competitive shipping rates and methods to insufficient technology. These would make your in-house operation very difficult to manage while running everything else. Overwhelming is an understatement. Needing to take on all the responsibilities and technicalities that come with fulfilling in-house can be exhausting. You decided to be an eCommerce business owner, not an expert in logistics.
What’s Outsourcing Fulfillment?
You have tried packing and shipping all your orders in-house and maybe even tried to find warehouse space on your own. Things have gotten complicated and overwhelming. Now let’s try outsourcing to a 3PL. What are 3PLs? Third-party logistics companies are there to take care of all your fulfillment needs.
The advantage of using 3PLs are numerous. For instance, there will always be enough room for your inventory. 3PLs have a lot of resources you would have a harder time finding on your own, and warehouse space is one of those resources. Along with warehouse space, 3PLs can provide things like negotiating pricing with vendors, shipping carriers and packaging companies, and provide those discounted rates to their customers. The rates you get while working with a fulfillment company will definitely be cheaper than what you would be getting if you did things on your own. One of the best resources that a 3PL can provide would be support through all your successes. Growth is the goal, right? Any time you want to get to a bigger and better spot, 3PLs will be able to help you get there. International shipping? Move from online to retail? Want to optimize your process? This is all what fulfillment distribution centers are here for, to take the weight off your shoulders and help build a foundation for scaling your business.
Here at Launch Fulfillment, we want to make sure you and your fulfillment needs are taken care of. We are a 3PL fulfillment distribution center that is ready to help you in any way we can. If you are interested in letting us be your 3PL fulfillment provider, give us a call and we can get you set up.