The Basics and Benefits of eCommerce Logistics: An In-Depth Analysis
The pandemic and the growing expectations from the eCommerce industry have increased the pressure to do better than ever before. Customers want faster shipping, zero errors and complete accountability and traceability if need be. The fast-growing competition in the market can steal your potential customer in a matter of moments. If you are an eCommerce seller, you probably already know that you cannot risk being slow!
This article will help you understand the basics and the benefits of eCommerce logistics, how it varies from traditional logistics, and how you can provide fast and eco-friendly shipping and increased order accuracy by collaborating with a third party logistics (3PL) fulfillment company.
What Does ‘eCommerce Logistics’ Mean?
The term ‘eCommerce logistics’ refers to all the processes that are involved in the storing and shipping of inventory for an eCommerce brand or store. E-commerce logistics include fulfillment services such as picking, packing and shipping as well as returns management. This starts off with picking the goods from the supplier or manufacturer and ends at delivering the goods to the customer’s doorstep.
How Does eCommerce Logistics Differ From Traditional Logistics?
Traditional logistics focus on stocking up their product offerings in their stores from where customers can shop and pick up, while eCommerce logistics work to provide the convenience of in-home shopping experience. Therefore, eCommerce logistics strive to pack and ship products to customer’s provided addresses, correctly and timely. Read on to learn about a few more major ways in which the two differ.
With the ability to shop from anywhere that’s on the company’s list of shipping zones, businesses dealing in eCommerce fulfillment get to enjoy a bigger customer base that isn’t hindered by geographical distances or even borders.
In-store Shopping vs. Home Delivered Goods
While traditional logistics have adapted and evolved with time, now offering curbside pickups and more flexibility, they can still not compete with the unprecedented convenience of home delivery offered by eCommerce logistics.
Variations in Shipment Size
Traditional logistics get their shipments via freight and customers come to the stores and purchase what they need, while in eCommerce logistics orders are packed and shipped via parcels. In the former, huge shipments are sent over to the fulfillment centers, while in the latter even a single product may be shipped to the customer. However, shipment size in eCommerce logistics can be huge too and tends to vary over a broad range.
How to Excel in eCommerce Logistics
To excel in eCommerce logistics, you need to focus on employing the best practices, using the latest and relevant technology and resources, and optimizing all your operations to maximize your outputs. Some essential steps include:
- Making use of a warehouse management system (WMS) to track your warehouse processes and performance
- Splitting inventory across multiple fulfillment warehouses depending on the geographical location of most of your customers, thereby reducing shipping charges and delivery time
- Using efficient reporting tech to get timely and important information about your eCommerce logistics systems
Benefits of Transitioning to eCommerce Logistics
Transitioning to eCommerce logistics can open the doors to a lot of possibilities and increase both your customer base and profits multifold. However, for that you need to take the right steps, such as partnering up with a 3rd party logistics company that specializes in streamlining the 3PL fulfillment process. Collaborating with a trusted expert will optimize your supply chain processes and maximize your dock-to-stock efficiency. Other benefits include:
Fast & Discounted Shipping
By adopting an efficient and agile shipping strategy, eCommerce logistics ensure faster shipping of orders. One way of doing this effectively is by distributing inventory across various fulfillment centers within one country or in various countries, wherever is close to a reasonable number of customers.
Discounted shipping is also achievable especially if you decide to partner with a 3PL provider who can share their carrier rates with you.
Efficient Returns Management
With massive order placements, come bigger number of returned orders as well. Return management can be laborious, costly and time consuming, however 3PLs that are expert in order fulfillment services can process returns easily and effectively.
Tech-enabled Performance Monitoring
Making use of an automated warehouse management system helps business easily track their inventory and stock and identify how well they are performing in terms of sales based on zones, seasons, and other factors. With all the necessary information integrated in a single dashboard, tracking, and managing inventory and making informed decisions is a lot easier.
How Can ShipBots Facilitate Transitioning Your Business to eCommerce Logistics?
Having ShipBots as your 3PL partner will free you from the worries of order fulfillment and let you focus on other domains of your business, such as researching other avenues and working on expansion. ShipBots can:
- optimize your supply chain processes with its expertise in eCommerce logistics
- free you from the worry of having to organize your inventory in a fulfillment warehouse by catering to the efficient distribution of inventory in multiple 3PL fulfillment centers on the basis of a data-driven decision
- reduce your packing and shipping costs
- provide you faster shipping
- maintain greater order accuracy and digitize tracking of orders and inventory
- find the best and most affordable delivery option for you
With the growing demand and expectations associated with online order fulfillment, the need to partner with an expert 3PL eCommerce logistics provider is greater than ever. While looking for the right partner, bear in mind that the right 3PL fit would be the one that allows you to enjoy the freedom to focus on exploring new revenues for growing your business while catering to all your in-house fulfillment requirements as well as increases your customer loyalty and your profitability.