5 Key Factors to Consider When Choosing An eCommerce Fulfillment Provider
August 23, 2018
When you’re looking to partner with an Australian fulfillment company to support your e-commerce business, it’s essential that any candidates be able to deliver the kind of service and value that will be an assist to your company. This is a very important decision, which should be based on criteria that will provide value to your company. The following 5 key factors should all be part of your decision-making process on how to choose the best fulfillment company for your e-commerce business.
1. Service level agreements (SLA’s)
You should insist that any fulfillment partner provide you with statistics on some of the most critical aspects of fulfillment, such as shipping, processing orders, receipts and inventory. You’ll want to know what the percentage is of same-day shipping of orders, as well as the accuracy of those orders. To ensure that your fulfillment partner remains accountable for all agreed-upon service levels, you should be provided with regular and reporting.
Most fulfillment companies tend to gear their operations toward specific industries and specific kinds of business, so any fulfillment provider that you partner with should ideally cater to your particular industry. That will ensure that they are already familiar with how your business works, and will not have to adapt anything on their end to accommodate your operations.
To verify all this, you should ask a candidate fulfillment company about who their current customers are, and whether or not references from them can be provided. You should also be sure that any potential partner is able to scale up to your business needs as you grow. Quality control measures are a must for any partner you are considering, and they should ideally have multiple fulfillment locations to support fast shipping to your customers.
Technology is one of the foundations for success in today’s business world, and any fulfillment company that you partner with should be able to provide cutting-edge technology in order to meet your needs. At the very least, this should include amodern Freight Optimisation System,an efficient Warehouse Management System, and any other systems necessary to meet the demands of your multi-channel operation. Make sure any fulfillment candidate has the technology to handle all your various sales channels, and that they are able to provide a favorable consumer experience, while also satisfying the business demands of order processing and order accuracy.
When it comes to shipping, flexibility is an important aspect of consumer demand, so it’s critical to know that your fulfillment partner is able to meet the demands of your customers, both now and in the future, by providing diverse shipping options. Domestic and international needs must be accounted for, as well as low-cost options and high-speed delivery options. Your fulfillment provider must be able to provide you with a number of essential shipping options, which are at the same time as cost-effective as possible.
Any fulfillment company which you choose as a partner should have the ability to manage your customers’ experience, as well as your own e-commerce business. A big part of that includes accurate reporting on all aspects of your e-commerce fulfillment operation, including levels of inventory, sales order fulfilment status, inbound delivery status and performance. Reporting must be accessible at all times, so that your company can be agile and flexible in making fast business decisions, which are data-driven and solidly anchored in facts.
Does your candidate fulfillment provider meet all these criteria? If not, it may be worth your while to continue your search, or to negotiate with a candidate about meeting all your requirements. There are a number of really good eCommerce fulfillment companies that you can team up with in Australia, and you should take your time trying to find one of these, because if you make a mistake in your selection process, a great deal of money and time might be wasted. Contact us today by calling 1300 735 133.