Fulfillment centers or fulfillment companies are companies that are mainly concentrated in product fulfillment services, on behalf of the product owner. They normally ensure the consumers get the goods they order. Fulfillment centers mainly hold goods, receive purchase orders and ensure they package and ship the ordered items to the end clients who made the orders. This is no new phenomena and we’ve seen a rise in fulfillment centers particularly since the conception of the internet.
Advantages of Outsourcing to a fulfillment center
There are normally various benefits that come from having your products outsourced to fulfillment services companies. Some of these advantaged include:
- We all know that order fulfillment is certainly not the lifeblood of any business. By outsourcing one easily save on time and can focus on other aspects of the business such as innovation, sales or marketing hence enhancing efficiency and productivity.
- Fulfillment companies can save you some space for they store your products for you in their fulfillment centers. They also save you off the extra costs of having your own warehouses and storage facilities.
- Outsourcing to a fulfillment center may help your business reach more geographical areas for some fulfillment centers are known to deliver goods globally.
- Outsourcing to a fulfillment company is also a plus in that it takes care of a bulk of the work, fulfillment centers handle a lot of the supply chain processes for your business.
We can’t say that fulfillment centers don’t have cons. There are a few disadvantages that come from outsourcing products to fulfillment service companies. Some of the cons may include the damage of some products especially if the products are not well handled. The client company also loses control of the process, so if there are any discrepancies in any of the processes that the fulfillment center handles the bad reputation will automatically be faced by the client company and not the fulfillment center. It’s often advisable for clients to establish good communication channels with the respective fulfillment company.
Standard fulfillment company services
Fulfillment companies often offer a wide variety of services to cater to different clients. Some of the standard services that fulfillment service companies offer include storage and warehousing, where they store items until a purchase order is placed for that item. Fulfillment centers also offer inventory control for they print out the inventory they have moved. Fulfillment centers also offer shipping services. They tend to get lower shipping price rates for they tend to ship products in bulk.
Things to consider before outsourcing to a fulfillment company.
There are a number of things one needs to take into consideration before hiring a fulfillment company. Some of the things include:
One should ensure they do some basic research on the company they have under consideration and ensure they have a proven track record of integrity. The basic research may also aid in making more informed decisions.
One must also take into consideration their products. They must consider if the product needs special handling or if it needs special storage. This though may make the cost to be more expensive.
One must ensure the fulfillment company has the proper communication channels with the respective fulfillment center company, there are many things that could go wrong so one needs the proper communication channels to address and voice their concerns.