6 Signs It Is Time to Outsource Fulfillment

Running a successful e-commerce business is demanding. It requires a lot of time, money, and expertise. Owners are pulled in a thousand directions daily. They manage product development, marketing, order fulfillment, customer service, staffing, and sales, all while remaining focused on future growth opportunities. It’s like running a three-ring circus, only with fewer furry employees. Order fulfillment is a crucial aspect of running a successful e-commerce business. There is a tipping point where order fulfillment can make or break profitability. Here are six signs it might be time to outsource fulfillment.

You Can No Longer Focus on Core Competencies

Focusing on your business’s core competencies has helped you gain success thus far. Continuing to hone and focus on what your company does best will ensure it continues to grow and thrive. There is a business idea that states, “Work on it, not just in it.” Often, a business owner builds the company around their ability to get things done. This works when the business is small but very quickly will bottleneck growth. When your time and attention are being hijacked by order fulfillment more than 20%, you might want to consider outsourcing fulfillment. A 3PL can give you back the headspace you need to refocus on what matters most to you and your customers.

Your Team Cannot Handle the Demand

Orders are rolling in at rates your team is struggling to keep up with. Does this scenario sound familiar? “Everyone is working around the clock to fulfill orders, yet they are getting increasingly delayed. I’m even pulling in admin, sales, and marketing staff to pack and ship product.” You might be laughing, thinking that would never happen to you until your product gets featured on Fixer Upper, or you missed the window to Prepare for Peak. Engaging with a fulfillment company gives you access to an expanded and expert fulfillment team.

You Have Outgrown Your Warehouse Space

time to outsource fulfillment

It’s challenging to stage receiving and fulfillment when you don’t have the space required to pick, pack, store, and ship products. This is especially difficult when you experience significant fluctuations in order volume. Holiday sales might fill your warehouse capacity and be virtually empty by January. You can utilize flexible warehousing to ebb and flow when you outsource fulfillment.

Order Errors are Increasing

Order errors are apt to happen, but they become more and more common when staff and management are stretched too thin. Whether the mistakes stem from a lack of time, staffing, space, or technology failures, they are costly. A rise in unhappy customers is directly related to order accuracy and promptness. One bad review will cost you 1 in every ten potential customers. For example, if you receive 300 visitors to your online store daily, one lousy review costs you 30 customers per day. Can you afford that loss? 3PL fulfillment teams can provide almost 100% order accuracy, and they can offer fast shipping.

You Know You are Paying Too Much for Shipping

Shipping is expensive. Leveraging every avenue to ensure you get the lowest shipping rates is good business practice. 3PL order fulfillment companies have preferred high-volume discounts with shipping carriers. They pass along those preferred rates to clients. If you are paying the same or more for shipping as your competitors, it might be time to outsource your fulfillment.

You Want to Expand Internationally

time to outsource fulfillment

Expanding your business to a new country is a huge undertaking. Expert knowledge is helpful whether you are launching in a neighboring country or taking your business worldwide. Fulfillment companies know how to navigate international customs, export and import law, and other complicated areas. They have managed fulfillment for others and can help create and streamline your process to have the most success in your new market.

Beginner’s Guide to Third-Party Logistics (3PL)

The world of e-commerce is always changing, therefore understanding the roll of Third-Party Logistics is integral to keeping up. In light of this our beginner’s guide to third-party logistics (3PL) will delve into the essential aspects, offering insights into fulfillment services, warehousing, and much more.

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Running an e-commerce business is undeniably a 24/7 job. When you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by the sheer number of orders to process and your team is running out of steam, it’s a clear indication that it’s time to outsource fulfillment. By doing so, you’ll gain the invaluable headspace needed to focus on future growth and expansion opportunities. Moreover, partnering with a 3PL fulfillment company like Falcon Fulfillment can provide you with flexible warehouse space, staffing, and cost-effective shipping rates. Consequently, you’ll be well-positioned to ensure that you have the best possible chance of not just surviving, but truly thriving in the face of e-commerce growth.

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