Outsourcing fulfillment enables businesses to contract affordable fulfillment services from a third-party logistics firm. Fulfillment involves handling orders from the request until it reaches the customer. This gives most enterprises a lifeline to increase their sales and presence in overseas markets at a reduced cost.
Before choosing a third-party logistics (3PL) provider, you must consider several factors. The cost of outsourcing, delivery options, insurance terms, storage capabilities, legal implications, and the provider’s reputation are factors companies should consider before connecting with fulfillment services. It is best to create a ranking scale for every factor and choose the 3PL with the highest aggregate score. Follow these three steps to connect with the perfect fulfillment service provider.
Examine Logistical Compatibility
Businesses take advantage of 3PL’s extensive network of facilities and professional relationships. Location, storage, picking, packaging, delivery period, and costs determine your 3PL provider choice. Examine the logistical compatibility of your available 3PL provider options before deciding.
Examine Location Compatibility
Location is the main concern when expanding your business’ reach. A business making its goods available to an overseas market faces a delivery challenge. It must cost-effectively deliver its products within an acceptable duration. A 3PL provider with an extensive network in your overseas target market works to your advantage.
Choose the 3PL with locations in your overseas target market to reap maximum benefit. Save costs with a mutually beneficial partnership with your third-party logistics company.
Confirm Delivery Options
Ecommerce customers now demand short delivery periods from all online retailers. Online retailers must meet these standard delivery periods or lose to faster retail options. Confirm the guaranteed delivery period options of your 3PL and rank them in order.
Choose the 3PL that delivers your products within 3-4 business days. Quick delivery may be the difference between success and failure in e-commerce.
Examine the Insurance Policy
Businesses contract fulfillment services for handling, transporting, storing, and delivering goods. Fulfillment risks are undertaken by the contracting parties depending on the contract. Review the insurance terms applying in case of an accident or breach of contract.
Review the policy concerning the services you wish to procure. Use this rating to rank your available 3PL provider options. Carefully review the terms of any 3PL contract to identify your provider’s liability before signing in for any policy.
Check for Inventory Management Compatibility
Inventory management is among the key services of a 3PL. It improves a business’ organization and strategic capacity by gathering useful statistics. Managing inventory is difficult for businesses trading overseas with market-specific inventory management. 3PL providers solve this problem through cloud-based inventory management solutions. These apply customized metrics to manage and monitor your business inventory.
Examine a 3PL provider’s inventory management plan to determine the best solution. Choose the 3PL provider that identifies the important inventory statistics for strategic decision-making.
Check Cost Implications
Cost is the biggest barrier to businesses wishing to expand their market base. 3PL providers offer various bundle options depending on the extent of service required. Hence, the need to use 3PL providers.
Examine the cost implication by tracking the savings a 3PL contract will incur. Choose the fulfillment company providing your desired services at the most affordable cost.
Research on the Reputation of Your Preferred 3PL Provider
After thorough research, you should examine each 3PL provider’s reputation. 3PL providers may fail to live up to the policies and standards promised. It is prudent to confirm your preferred 3PL provider’s goodwill before contract negotiations.
Avoid 3PL providers with numerous negative feedback from customers. If you find any negative customer reviews, you can ask questions to get their side of thethe story and make your judgment. Delivery mistakes that happened to other customers are also likely to occur if you choose a suspicious 3PL.
Reach Out to the Best 3PL Option
Once you choose a 3PL option compatible with your business, contact them to start negotiations. At the initial stage of contract negotiations, 3PLs assess your situation to develop a customized business solution. The 3PL will provide you with a contract with legal implications. It is advisable to introduce a lawyer at this stage.
Hire a Lawyer
At this stage, your 3PL provider has introduced a customized agreement based on the services you wish to contract. Shield your business from exploitative contracts by hiring a lawyer or legal firm. Lawyers will review a contract and advise on the legal implications. Hire a lawyer with international trade law experience to identify possible problems in terms of the agreement relating to the international trade of your products.
Connect With Fulfillment Service Today
The 3PL providers coordinate with your business to offer cost-effective services within your budget. Focus on product quality and let a third-party logistics company handle your fulfillment. Increase your market reach at a fraction of the actual cost by connecting with a fulfillment service today!