11 signs you’re ready to outsource fulfilment
Have you ever thought about outsourcing your fulfilment needs? If you’ve found this blog then you’ve probably considered it, but when do you know that your company is ready? There are multiple signs that your business might need to start outsourcing your fulfilment. Not every company needs to consider fulfilment outsourcing but it suits a large number of big and small companies. Let’s look at the potential signs that you might be ready to do so yourself…
- Your fulfilment costs are rising
- Your want to cut costs
- Your marketing needs are taking a backseat
- Your lack the internal expertise
- You lack the technology needed
- You’re manually inputting orders
- You are concerned about brand image
- Your infrastructure doesn’t support potential growth
- You don’t have enough storage
- You are going international
- You overpay for shipping
1. Your fulfilment costs are rising
You might notice that your fulfilment costs are rising because your business is expanding, or your shipping costs are rising. Whatever the reason, outsourcing your fulfilment really can save you money.
2. You want to cut costs (even if they aren’t rising)
You might want to cut costs even if your costs are currently affordable or not rising that drastically. Perhaps you want to hire more staff, invest in some new technology, or even take a step back? Outsourcing your fulfilment can free up the time and the money to enable you to do this. If you have thought about but not sure whether to take the plunge or not, have a look at the following signs and see if any of these apply too.
3. Your marketing and other business needs are taking a backseat to make time for fulfilment
We all know that money can be precious and often the first thing to be cut when thinking about how to save money is your marketing or sales department. This is arguably one of the worst mistakes you can make and there really are other ways to free up a pair of hands or save some money, like outsourcing your fulfilment! Giving this responsibility away can free up a lot of spare time and allow you to focus your efforts on other extremely important elements of the business.
4. You lack the internal expertise for your fulfilment needs
Sometimes, it really is just a question of expertise. Perhaps you’re thinking about new ways to make your packaging sustainable or cheaper or more creative? But, really, for this you need expertise. Outsourcing your fulfilment means that all these expertise are at your fingertips and you don’t have to worry about making mistakes. It is virtually impossible to have all the expertise you need in-house so outsourcing can be a great alternative for getting all the knowledge you need, and not just for fulfilment but other elements too!
5. You lack the technology needed for your fulfilment needs
It might not just be knowledge that you’re lacking but also technology. Outsourcing your fulfilment to a company that uses the latest and most up to date technology could be the best solution for your business. For example, Complete Packaging uses high-tech bar code scanning systems that make stock control easy.
6. You’re still manually inputting orders (and making mistakes)
This links to the above point. Manually inputting order is not only time consuming (and obviously time is money and stress etc.) but you might be making inevitable mistakes that are only going to happen with a large amount of orders and the room for human error. This can be avoided by giving the responsibility over to an outsourced fulfilment company that can handle your requests, order numbers and everything else seamlessly.
7. You are concerned about brand damage due to incorrect orders
If you have made mistakes, or are worried about making mistakes, you might be worried about the impact that this has on your brand image. If you find yourself thinking about this a lot, or having experienced this, it might be time to think about a solution, which could mean outsourcing your packaging and fulfilment services to a reliable, established company.
8. Your current infrastructure doesn’t support your growth, or potential growth
You might be at the point where you either need to expand your workforce and technology or outsource, and you know what we are going to say to that!
9. You don’t have enough storage for your products
The same goes for physical space. Renting or buying a large storage area can be extremely expensive and outsourcing your fulfilment can be a cost-effective, stress-free alternative. Fulfilment companies have large warehouses that can store varying amounts of stock. This is particularly useful if you have seasonal orders or big promotions.
10. You’re expanding internationally
If your business is about to go global there are lots of things you need to think about, that you might not have the time, money, technology or expertise for, and that’s when it might be a good idea to look at outsourcing your fulfilment.
11. You overpay for shipping
You might not even know it, but you could be overpaying for shipping. Often paying for shipping directly can be more expensive in time and money. If you are organising all your orders yourself you are using up a lot of time in order to make sure they are shipped out on time. Plus, by using a fulfilment company, the discounts acquired by the 3PL can be passed on directly to the client, reducing the cost of shipping and other elements.
If any of the above applies to you and your business it might be time to explore your options. We would also recommend getting in touch with a fulfilment and packaging company to discuss your outsourcing needs in order to make a well-informed decision. Outsourcing fulfilment isn’t for everybody but suits a large number for of companies and businesses, particularly those that are growing and expanding.