Getting a fulfillment center for your online store is a step to success. Although you can fulfill orders by yourself, it can be overwhelming. That’s because you might miss a few orders in the process.
Business growth will force you to invest in one or two centers for smooth running. Later, you can think of building a warehouse if need be.
Third-party logistics centers handle inventory tracking.They deal with packaging, order fulfillment, and shipping. You can handle the other sectors of your business.
But, there are so many fulfillment centers today. Getting the best is a vital decision. Of course, it will determine if your business will thrive or not.
So, check out the below pointers to find the best fulfillment center in China.
Step 1: Arrange Your Data.
One of the issues that small businesses face is messy information. When looking for the right center, give the companies the correct information.
The fulfillment companies will then give proposals for their services, features, and fees.
With the messy information, they won’t be able to offer an accurate quotation. Thus, ensure you pull data from one definitive source.
You can then sync it across other areas that use the data. See the data you need to provide to fulfillment centers you are vetting:
1) The SKU List.
The total number of all SKUs your business sells is crucial. It determines the storage space a fulfillment center should have for your items.
Of course, a few SKUs won’t need as much space. But, accurate information is key when finding a reliable fulfillment center.
2) The Order Volume and Sales History.
The fulfillment centers need to know the total number of goods you sell. Whether daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly.
They need to know the scale they are facing. But it doesn’t have to be granular transactions and histories.
The information should show the distributions of SKUs that sell. So, make sure you give their volumes over a certain period.
3) The Weight of Products.
It might seem obvious, but weight is a primary concern. Items below 16 oz. have a similar shipping rate across the US.
But things get crazier when the weight exceeds 1lb. The weight issue goes hand in hand with the next step in this guide.
Before comparing your findings, give similar information to all centers. It should help you make a solid decision on which company to choose.
Step 2: Know the Location of a Fulfillment Center.
There must be a location where you ship most orders. For instance, you might run your business in China. But you ship most orders to Europe.
Then, it will be ideal to have a fulfillment center somewhere in Europe.
The same applies to other places across the globe. So, identify where most of your orders go. You can then find a fulfillment center in that area.
Some reputable logistics businesses have distribution centers worldwide. These companies help with the delivery of products to customers.
Others could be in specific areas or zones. You may get a small or start-up fulfillment center.
It could have two or three distribution centers. Their proposals might be appealing and the best option.
You can use it until your business grows, exceeding its scope. If your business expands, so does the center. Thus, there is no need to stop your contract.
Step 3: Ensure the Fulfillment Centers Works in Your Niche.
Some fulfillment centers deal with specific product types. For instance, some only ship heavy-duty machinery or powder products. But, your business might be dealing with beauty products.
So, you want to get a center that handles your type of goods. It is for easy and quick order fulfillment. If you only ship small to medium volumes, you want a similar center.
It will be difficult to get help from a center that ships large volumes. The center should be able to handle dozens of items like your business does.
Thus, identify a center that suits your needs. Reach them for a quote and proposal.
Ask fulfillment centers for all the data they need. Once you provide and they send the proposals, analyze them well.
Step 4: Evaluate the Proposals
Every business looks for alignments of benefits. It will be best if the fulfillment company is within your niche. If it operates in a broad category, you have the green light.
Not everyone will let you know this. Ensure you check with the center and confirm the shipping companies they use. Fulfillment centers have contracts with certain shipping companies.
The shipping company might not cover all the areas you want to ship the products. Thus, you might have to seek a second option.
Moreover, you want to know if it is cheap to use the fulfillment center. Some situations might force you to keep your current option.
Make comparisons using sales from the previous month. Consider how much it will cost you as your business continues to grow.
Know the aspects that will lead to an increase in the fees. Moreover, understand the thresholds to stay below or above, especially regarding sales volumes. The crucial thing is maintaining the best possible pricing.
Ensure the center integrates special order tools with its data feeds. If you are using any, reach your center for effective operations.
Step 5: Choose the Fulfillment Center.
Check out all the proposals you get to help you decide on companies to contact. But, ensure to remain realistic with all your expectations.
Suppose you get a global company, the better. That’s because you will get worldwide coverage at any time. No worries if you aren’t planning to go beyond your current shipping areas.
Contract an ideal company and see how order fulfillment goes.
There are so many questions about fulfillment centers. Some are basic, while others need a little research. Even so, you may need to get the correct answers. We have compiled a few questions to help you determine if you need one.
There are more to help you identify the best fulfillment center if you do.
Parcel from China