The importance of efficient order fulfillment
Order fulfillment and distribution of your product is the most important aspect of your business. Without an efficient logistics plan, you simply can't satisfy your customers' demands. Order fulfillment services can help you with the planning and execution of your delivery strategy. Fulfillment services, or product fulfillment services, provide a variety of options for your shipping needs, from inbound customer service and order placement, to shipping and transportation solutions. Other important services offered include receiving, inspection, storage and packing.
Fulfillment services and fulfillment companies have increased drastically in number since Internet shopping and e-commerce have become more popular.
Online Product Fulfillment Services
Product fulfillment services are typically Web-based organizations that provide solutions for all your logistics problems. They are especially useful for e-commerce specialists, since you're typically able to store your inventory in their warehouse. If you take advantage of these services, you can reduce your required overhead to a small home office and keep your company completely online. Some fulfillment services even have their own e-commerce platform that you can use to process your orders, taking yourself right out of the logistics system and allowing the service to receive and fulfill orders for you.
Shipping your product isn't the only service many fulfillment companies offer. You may find a company that will also take care of your customer service, sending your customers directly to their own call center services when there is a problem. Many of these services are also active in promotion, and can provide customized packaging that includes promotional materials like flyers, brochures and catalogues in each shipment.
Choosing a Fulfillment Company
The right product fulfillment service for you will depend on the needs of your business. Make sure that you look into pricing, including setup fees, monthly fees, and any minimum fee requirements. How much you should be willing to invest in outsourcing your product fulfillment depends on the volume and frequency with which you need to ship items.
Also make sure that you look into the shipping options each service offers. Some forms of shipment will cost more than others, and you want to be sure that the company will be able to ship to any customer, anywhere in your service area. Efficient and accurate tracking of packages is important when you're looking to increase your customer service and satisfaction, so you may also have a particular shipping company in mind that you would like to deal with.