An upstart beverage company had the great fortune of an unexpected feature on Good Morning America. The free marketing almost destroyed the business. Why? The company was unprepared for the logistics and fulfillment of the sudden order spike. They were dropped from Amazon and eBay and had nearly 10,000 orders that would take 30 days to fill. The company survived, but only because they got their supply chain in order.
Whether you have a new company or high-growth plans for 2020, now is the time to consider a third-party logistics provider (3PL) for warehousing and order fulfillment. You never know when your company just might get the publicity push of a lifetime. Will you be ready?
3PLs: The One-Stop Shop
Most companies are not shipping experts, especially in the early growth stages. Even Amazon struggled with fulfillment early on. Adding a 3PL bridges the knowledge gap. While companies can hire providers that specialize in discrete portions of the supply chain, the best 3PLs manage it all. Consider that many traditional warehousing providers optimize inventory within their four walls but have limited knowledge of what occurs beyond them. In contrast, a 3PL-managed warehouse operates as part of the comprehensive logistics process. End-to-end 3PL oversight and expertise ensures your supply chain operates efficiently and gives busy companies a one-stop logistics resource. This saves you time and money.
Ecommerce platform provider Shopify recommends considering a 3PL when a company starts fulfilling 10-20 orders per day. That may seem small, but calculate how much time fulfillment takes away from other areas needed for business growth. 3PLs with warehouses help the companies they serve scale. This is especially important for businesses experiencing rapid growth, expanding into new markets, or those subject to extreme sales peaks. 3PLs flex with you, so selecting the right provider now helps them contribute to your long-term success.
Cost and Time Savings
Building a warehouse is capital intensive and not realistic for most companies. Partnering with a 3PL-managed warehouse provides advantages perfect for a growing business. First, companies only pay for the portion of the warehouse they occupy, which allows them to benefit from economies of scale. They also gain access to warehouse management software, such as Manhattan WMS Scale, which provides valuable information for reducing fulfillment costs and improving accuracy. Plus, 3PLs eliminate worries around increasing payroll costs or finding qualified staff. Outsourcing warehousing to a 3PL allows marketing-driven companies or those still developing their operational expertise to focus on the core competencies of the business that generate revenue.
Services for Success
How will you handle a promotional bundle? Can you realistically offer expedited shipping at Christmas? Consider your present and future logistics needs when selecting a warehouse provider. Ensure they offer services aligned with your business operations such as kitting, assembly, ecommerce, order processing, and billing. Adding 3PL management layers in the ability of designing fulfillment services specific to your business. The right 3PL understands your supply chain and can offer solutions for today and tomorrow’s customer challenges.
Logistics and Location
Your website goes everywhere. Does your supply chain? With customer expectations for deliveries getting shorter, more companies are using a forward deployed inventory strategy. This expands product distribution from regional warehouses into smaller, decentralized facilities to keep inventory as close to the consumer as possible. Consider a warehouse’s location in relation to your customers. Positioned within a day’s drive to 80% of the US and Canada population, Indiana represents an ideal domestic locale. Having a warehouse close to consumers with multiple transportation mode options also helps keep logistics costs low.
Whether your business is making $250,000 or $250 million, having the right 3PL partner is critical. Langham Logistics offers 500,000 square feet of multi-purpose warehouse space in Indianapolis, Indiana, and has connections for distribution around the world. Currently, we have space available in the following:
- 240,000 sq. ft. in Indianapolis, IN
- 300,000 sq. ft. in Plainfield, IN
- 50,000 sq. ft. in Carson, CA
- New space coming soon to Tolleson, AZ
Our complement of fulfillment services align with even the most stringent cost and quality expectations. Request a fulfillment analysis for your business from our industrial engineering team to see how Langham always delivers.