Several myths give the outsourcing industries a bad rap, with third-party logistics (3PL) being no exception. Those who buy into them believe that outsourcing a business process like shipping is usually expensive, unpredictable, and unreliable. However, as a consequence of not considering 3PL, entrepreneurs may be destined to bite off more than they can chew. They may be handling important business processes with less of the knowledge, equipment, and control that they could have on their side.
Given how much 3PL has done for industries like ecommerce, it’s time to dispel the myths about outsourced logistics once and for all. If a company chooses the right partners, 3PL shipping services can turn out to be extremely rewarding, in terms of both profits and performance. From just a basic service, shipping may even become a revenue-generating opportunity.
What makes 3PL different from traditional in-house shipment models, and why will it matter to your business? Here are six key advantages of shipping with a 3PL provider, and why you should consider tying up with a 3PL industry leader like Red Stag Fulfillment.
- It’s extremely convenient for you. First off, partnering with a 3PL provider will take a huge weight off your shoulders. Not only will a 3PL company handle deliveries—they’re also prepared to streamline several aspects of order fulfillment for you. These include everything that goes before delivery, including picking, packing, sorting, labeling, and reverse logistics. Once you relax about order fulfillment and shipping, you can concentrate on your business’s other core competencies such as sales, supplier relations, and securing leads.
- 3PL companies have experience shipping quickly and accurately. If you’re an ecommerce entrepreneur, your bread and butter is selling products from a virtual storefront. Similarly, the bread and butter of a 3PL company is handling shipments of all types. They have enough experience to know the ins and outs of shipping, from the best routes to take to the transport needs of particular products. This is a good reason for you to see them as reliable, as well as good at what they do.
- 3PL companies can operate around the same industry knowledge as you. It could also very well be that your 3PL company specializes in a certain sector, like ecommerce. If they offer outsourced shipping services within your niche, you’ll be able to talk shop with them. You can also trust them to do their work according to how your own industry is evolving.
- 3PL providers have wide shipping coverage. The 3PL company’s delivery fleet may be able to reach areas that you wouldn’t have been able to on your own. Every shipping area on their map represents a customer base that you can tap. From the 3PL’s shipping network, you might be able to engage with new customers, score wider sales opportunities, and get a more lucrative year-end sales figure.
- 3PL providers employ some of the best inventory management and warehousing practices. By virtue of their line of work, 3PL companies are always in the process of modernizing. Not only do they fine-tune their approach to shipment by the day, but they also invest in state-of-the-art inventory management systems, warehousing facilities, and transport. The best logisticians also employ protocols to stay transparent and accountable for clients. For example, immediate reimbursement for any damaged product.
- 3PL shipping is a highly scalable process. With the 3PL model, there’s less pressure to keep shipping a certain volume of product every single month. A 3PL company is equipped to scale up and scale down with you, depending entirely on how much you aim to ship for the period. They can help you adjust your shipping needs for busy periods, such as the holidays or slower periods.
If it’s a question of what’s good to outsource versus what isn’t, shipment falls under the former. Third party logistics for shipping can help you save money, improve your overall efficiency, and build trust among your customers. And that’s why you shouldn’t worry about entrusting your shipment processes to professional logisticians.