A 3PL provider is a fulfillment company that provides an end-to-end solution for your business logistics needs. They ensure that you are provided with peace of mind so your organization can focus on its key goals rather than focusing on shipping orders.
The services provided by the 3PL provider can help your business in achieving sustainability and better customer satisfaction. SMEs that do not have the resources to afford infrastructures such as warehousing and a separate packaging plant can hire a 3PL provider for these for a fraction of the cost.
Here is a list of fulfillment services offered by a 3PL provider:
3PL allows your business to have no freight transport vehicles. The 3PL will find you a freight service that will fulfill your requirements or they can will provide the transportation. They can have a range of vehicles such as:
- Semi-trailer trucks.
- Tail-lift trucks.
- Jumbo trailer trucks.
- Flatbed trucks.
- Straight trucks.
- Refrigerated trucks.
Warehousing facilities offered by 3PL providers reduce the financial burden of managing a warehouse on their own for the manufacturing business. The warehouse is temperature-controlled, secure, and clean for keeping the stock.
Warehousing by the 3PL provider is done efficiently and they make sure that the inventory is always stocked so there are no constraints in the supply chain.
Provide Real-Time Information Through Cloud Technology and IoT
With the advent of cloud technology and the Internet of Things, a 3PL provider can provide your business with real-time data and information about sales trends. They can forecast an upcoming glut in stocks due to slow sales or an increase in demand for a certain product by analyzing consumer behavior.
Managing Your E-commerce Site
The most important fulfillment service is the managing of your E-commerce site. Your 3PL provider will manage the online orders of your customers, requiring them to handle a myriad of tasks simultaneously such as inventory management, restocking, packing, and shipping of the orders.
And this does not end with delivering the order to the customer because there is a possibility that the customer might want to return the product. So the 3PL will also provide reverse logistics in which they will pick the product back, assess it for damage and make it available for purchase again if it is undamaged.
Handling Bulk Quantities
Most manufactures or production plants outsource their logistics because their business has grown so much that they cannot perform these on their own. This is where 3PL providers come in because they are able to handle bulk quantities of stock. They have the transportation to pick these products, they have dedicated packing facilities and warehousing to store them. Lastly, they have a management system to handle the E-commerce division of logistics.
Should You Choose A 3PL For Your Business?
Before outsourcing your logistics to a 3PL you must know whether it will be feasible for you or not. You can compare the cost of outsourcing with the cost you will have to pay for internal investment. You will also have to see if your production rate and sales rate are large enough to be accepted by a 3PL provider. These questions will help you decide whether you need 3PL or not.
Once you have made your mind to using 3PL, you can contact a provider such as Red Stag Fulfillment. https://redstagfulfillment.com/3pl-definition-process-resources/ provides excellent information about the 3PL process to help you plan your fulfillment.