Fulfillment Centers

Written by Linda Alexander
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Fulfillment centers know that fulfilling orders on a timely basis is one of the most important factors in customer's buying decisions. Whether the customer buys from you again largely depends on how well you fill their orders or issue returns. Good fulfillment brings customers back, and fulfillment doesn't get done on its own!

Advantages of Contracting to Fulfillment Centers

Using a fulfillment center to handle your orders has many advantages. They are able to buy shipping materials in large quantities at lower prices, passing the savings on to you. You won't have to run a large warehouse operation, which in itself saves you lots of dollars. Another advantage of fulfillment centers is that their systems are largely automated. Your contractor has spent millions of dollars to create an accurate system, keeping y our costs down and speeding up your delivery time. Also, you need less inventory this way, because you won't have to buy up large quantities of inventory, which sits in a warehouse.

Because fulfillment is connected to everything else in your business, if you choose to outsource it, make sure you go with a company that is integrated and fully automated. This will reduce error and enhance communications. Make sure you have access to reports about every transaction that occurs with regard to your orders and their fulfillment. The fulfillment centers you choose should also be able to handle various sales channels; wherever your orders come from they should be handled with the same level of efficiency.

One other thing to consider is reverse logistics. If you are using a fulfillment center to handle your orders, how will you handle returns? Some providers can do this for you as well. As your business grows, you will have more of a need to do this automatically, too, rather than manually. So choose a fulfillment company that handles order returns as well as fulfillment.

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