According to the US Department of Commerce Retail Indicator Division, ecommerce sales in the US have increased to an estimated $870.8 billion during 2021. This represents a 14.2% increase over 2020. This substantial increase puts strains on supply chains and fulfillment costs. For ecommerce companies, this signifies significant budgetary expenses. To address these issues, more companies are beginning to use third-party logistics providers (3PL). B&C Logistics can help manage costs and keep the business growing.
1. Managing Labor Costs
One of the most intensive parts of an ecommerce is actually pulling and shipping orders on time. It is very labor intensive and often requires more workers than traditional businesses. One of the benefits of 3PLs is that they have a built-in workforce to handle these tasks. Also, they have access to temporary workers to handle surges in demand. This flexibility in meeting workforce demands is a benefit for ecommerce businesses in that they are paying for the workers needed to get the job done.
Additionally, 3PLs have warehouse management systems to handle the picking, slotting and packing process. Their streamlined processes are designed to increase worker efficiency. Many also utilize technology and automation in their warehouse operations which can reduce labor costs and optimize productivity and reduce errors. It also allows your ecommerce business to function more efficiently.
2. Making Warehousing Effective
Today, warehouse space is at a premium. The increase in ecommerce sales has seen the demand for warehouses and fulfillment centers grow in recent years. This is causing the cost of warehouse space to grow as demand increases. This can be avoided by working with a 3PL who already has the necessary warehouse and fulfillment in place. For instance, centrally located ecommerce fulfillment companies in Illinois and across the Midwest bring products closer to customers and make the shipping process more transparent and efficient.
Lowering the warehousing costs is extremely important today. Locating warehousing in central states, such as a Chicago Il distribution center means lower costs for businesses. Also, some 3PLs share space in distribution centers which can lower costs further while still providing flexibility for the ecommerce business as business volumes fluctuate.
In addition to maximizing warehouse space, 3PLs also provide the storage solutions needed including mixed pallet racking, shelving and floor storage to maximize space and care for the products. This is another step that can lower distribution costs, and storage fees for the business.
3. Lighter Packages
The size of a package and the type of packing material used can increase the weight of the parcel and the cost to ship it. Packing material, or filler, is needed to protect items during shipment and keep anything from shifting but depending on the type of material used, it can add to the overall weight of the package.
3PLs like B&C Logistics focus on using boxes that are the right size and packing materials that will reduce overall weight and result in a smaller overall box. In some cases, this may mean using a polybag instead of a box for certain items. It depends on the type of the item and the level of protection that it needs. However, these changes affect the shipping costs overall. At B&C Logistics, we can help you find the best way to package your items so you can save on shipping costs.
4. Improved Shipping Rates for Parcels
While it continues to become more expensive to ship packages, a solid 3PL can help with managing bulk shipments to negotiate better shipping rates through major carriers. This helps ecommerce businesses financially. They do this through advanced parcel analytics and management systems to track orders. They also utilize rate shipping software that looks at processes and costs to find areas where there are savings.
The importance of this technology is that it can also track transit times and take into account time zones so that shipping can be done effectively and more cost effectively. In some cases, this includes shipping parcels through distribution centers that are located nearer to customers. This helps improve shipping times while lowering costs.
The right 3PL partner can lower costs and improve efficiency. The team at B&C Logistics is ready to help your ecommerce business grow and develop with efficient shipping options. Distribution becomes easier when you have the right partner.