When to outsource order fulfillment for your ecommerce store?
You have a great product line. You spent months working hard to sell those products, and gradually you start getting sales orders for your store. But instead of focusing more on eCommerce marketing strategies, you end up spending more time to ensure all orders are actually being shipped to customers correctly when fulfilling order in-house. Indeed, when it comes to fulfillment for your ecommerce store, it is always a tough one to crack.
With holidays and year-end round the corner, many eCommerce sellers may be thinking to revamp their current order fulfillment process. For those who process order fulfillment in-house, you may be wondering when is the right time to outsource order fulfillment?
The answer to the question, it can be done anytime, and by any sized business. Small and medium companies can save a lot of money by outsourcing order fulfillment, and large players can shift effort and cost to third-party fulfillment provider who is already an expert dealing with picking, packaging and shipping products in large quantities.
If you are still confused, then continue reading the blog which will describe when you should outsource and what are the benefits of outsourcing order fulfillment for your ecommerce store.
In most cases and for most companies, the right time to outsource your order fulfillment department is when your:
– Marketing and other important tasks are hampered
A successful ecommerce business has to focus more in selling products, which means the growth of your business depends on how you source great products through advertising and differentiate your brand from others.
The world of ecommerce is becoming competitive day-by-day, and making your brand visible is a big challenge. Now, if you are spending maximum time in fulfillment process (picking, packing, shipping), it may be at the expense of marketing and other important tasks – which makes it one of the reason when you should think of outsourcing order fulfillment for your ecommerce store.
– Order volume unstable
The sales order volume for any eCommerce business is unpredictable, which means you may received hundreds of orders in a day and not even a single order the next day. In such situations, costs related to warehouse and labor prove to be expensive. Now, if you are facing an instability in the sales flow for your business, it a sign you outsource order fulfillment. By doing this you avoid the fixed cost situation selecting a variable model that offer an accurate and cost-effective solution to process orders.
– Your resources cannot support growth
As an when time passes and with constant marketing effort, your business will grow. This means, more and more orders will flow in your store. Quickly ask yourself, do you have the resources (warehouse area to accommodate sufficient inventory, and staff) to support the growth?
Keeping this mind, you can easily decide when you should select a leading 3rd party provider to process and fulfill your customer’s orders. Because, outsourcing your fulfillment tasks you can focus more on other important tasks ensuring that your operations will scale according to your business’s growth – whether sales flow is high or low.
Key benefits of outsourcing order fulfillment
Time is the most advantageous factor that an order fulfillment company offers to eCommerce business owners. Simple receive and forward order details to the order fulfillment service. From start till end, they’ll process and ship orders to your high-end customers accurately. This way you save plenty of time that you use in picking, packing, shipping, and keeping a track on orders until the customer receives it. Everything will be systematically taken care by the fulfillment company allowing you to use the saved time in thinking about tactics that will help you grow your business.
When you outsource order fulfillment, you eliminate the hassle of the fixed cost that you have to incur, regardless to the volume of orders your store receives. This way you can stop wasting money for the service that you don’t use and spend the saved cost to improve product catalog and in your marketing strategies.
– Shipping rates
You may ship hundreds of orders from your store, but there are less chances for you to get a discount in shipping orders. This is because your order volume is not constant. However, regardless to the number of orders your store receives, outsourcing your order fulfillment will bring some difference in your shipping rates. This is because order fulfillment companies have a tie-up with leading carriers who ship large amount of orders in-one-go, hence they can help you cut some costs on shipping rates and supplies.
Adopting an order fulfillment company for your ecommerce business, you automatically eliminate the cost of maintaining staff to pick, pack, and ship products. Simply pay for the products you ship.
Outsourcing your order fulfillment process, you’ll automatically have trained staff who would be handling your customer’s orders. Such staff members have years of experience and work with proper ethics. Therefore, you eliminate the need of hiring, training and retraining staff members when fulfilling orders on your own.
– Tracking and reporting
Most of the order fulfillment companies directly integrates with your order management system. This system will then allow you to track and report their customers with product status. Instead of manually processing, tracking and reporting customers about the status of their order, get an access to all your customer’s order details within one screen which will be offered by your outsourced partner.
Whether you receive few or even hundreds and thousands of orders per day, outsourcing order fulfillment for your ecommerce store will be cost-effective, effortless and accurate way to dispatch customer’s orders.
Savio Fernandes is a writer who influences. Writing for over three years at Orderhive, he is currently focused in offering eCommerce and retail solutions for start-ups and medium business owners.
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