Helpful Canadian Fulfillment Information

Canadian Fulfillment Information

Order fulfillment and pick and pack fulfillment are large industries, with many players offering many types of service. For this reason, clearly establishing your needs before starting out can help you in picking the company that’s the perfect fit for you. Feel free to read the following articles to inform you on current and common order fulfillment terms and practices.

Why a Small 3PL may be just what the Doctor Ordered

Many tend to hire the largest company, with the most recognizable name. Is this the right thing to do for your company?

smaller-warehouseKnown as 3PL in the business jargon, order fulfillment companies, or third-party logistics companies can help businesses of all sizes save money, time and resources by taking over the physical and logistical aspects of order fulfillment. This allows business owners to refocus their efforts on the core aspects of their business without compromising end-user quality and customer satisfaction.

For many customers, there are serious advantages to dealing with small and medium-sized product fulfillment companies over giant order fulfillment corporations.

The Hungrier, The Better

The first reason is price; smaller 3PL companies are hungrier than the big ones, and can be a lot more aggressive and flexible on pricing that larger companies with an established client base can be. Their flexibility and lack of corporate overhead can translate in massive savings for their customers, all the while retaining an exemplary level of service.

Superior Service and Commitment

The second reason is commitment, and the level of personal customer service you, as the customer, can expect. It is normal than with smaller order fulfillment companies, you would get a more personal level of service compared to a large corporation, and it makes sense. All other things being equal, giving your business to a company where it will be appreciated, and where that appreciation will be reciprocated in the form of better service, and a more personal touch, also makes perfect sense.

The size of an order fulfillment company is not necessarily correlated to the quality of service you will receive, or with prices. CanadianFulfillmentCenter.com has done the research necessary to give you options when looking for an outsources product fulfillment solution. This is a free service offered to you by CanadianFulfillmentCenter.com, so don’t hesitate!

The Right Time to Outsource Order Fulfillment

When’s the right time to start thinking about outsourcing order fulfillment? You may already be there!

right-time-fulfillmentSmall and medium-sized companies, particularly start-ups, can worry about overextending themselves, and thus consider the use of an order fulfillment center an unnecessary frivolity. While it is true that it would be unwise for very, very small start-ups to use an outsourced fulfillment center, many small and medium-sized company would benefit greatly.

Generally speaking, the moment you must hire someone whose sole responsibility is in-house order fulfillment, you should consider the benefits of outsourcing. As a company, it stands to reason that you must be ready to fulfill all the orders you get on your busiest day.

Consider the following hypothetical scenario: on you busiest day of the month, you need to ship 100 order. You get three days like this a month, but you don’t know which it’ll be. On all other days, you will ship from 25 to 50 orders. You are thus forced to have the facilities, and staff required to ship 100 orders, but only use them at their full potential 3 days a month. The rest of the time, your expensive staff operates at 25 to 50-percent capacity.

If you think that this is wasteful, it certainly is! By outso
urcing your fulfillment department to a Canadian order fulfillment company, you pay exactly for what you need, every order and every day. You do not need to maintain a high fulfillment capacity for those rare days on which you need it, and have it remain partially idle the rest of the time, wasting money and resources. Moreover, your fulfillment company is ready to deal with your growth; you’ll never have to worry about expanding your shipping or fulfillment capacity, because with the right 3PL, it’s already there!

The decision to outsource your order fulfillment department can be a daunting one, especially when it comes to choosing fulfillment partner. This is why CanadianFulfillment.com has pre-screened many companies according to their strengths, and can help you find the Canadian Fulfillment Center that will help you reach your goals.

For many people, especially owners of small or medium companies, it can be difficult not to have a constant physical oversight of your inventory, which can delay the decision to outsource order fulfillment. This is completely understandable, however it is these companies that will benefit the most from outsourcing, freeing up resources to grow their company, boost their sales and expand their markets, all the while increasing profits and consolidating customer satisfaction through superior service.

Typical Fees Charged by 3PL Companies

Knowing the kind of fees to expect can help you to quickly make up your mind about potential order fulfillment partners.

3pl-fees-expectedOrder fulfillment companies typically make money by charging their customers various handling fees, not by charging a premium on shipping charges. These fees can vary from company to company, but the basic ones are pretty standard. What you need to make sure of is that you are aware, explicitly, of every type of fee your Canadian pick and pack fulfillment company will charge so that you can make an informed decision.

Shipping fees – These fees will vary depending on whether you choose Canada Post or a private company for shipping (such as UPS).  You can expect to pay 10% to 20% off published UPS rates, by taking advantage of your order fulfillment company’s shipping discount. This is almost always less than what you would have paid had you not used their services. There are rarely, if ever, discounts for shipping with Canada Post.

Receiving Fees – These are the fees that the order fulfillment house will charge for unloading, receiving and entering into inventory your products prior to sale. They can very pretty wildly from company to company, although they are normally charged on a per-hour basis, which usually averages out to about $30 to $45 per hour.

Per-SKU Fees – These fees are typically charged to cover the cost of entering a new SKU in the system. These fees should only be charged once per SKU, not every time you restock. Normal fees range from $0.25 to $1 per SKU.

Per Order or Pick and Pack Fees – This is where good order fulfillment companies make their money, and that’s also where you’ll find the most disparities and competition among those vying for your business. The Per Order fees are flat fees that are charged by the 3PL companies to pick, pack and process your outgoing orders. Fees per order can range anywhere from $2 to $10 or more, with an additional small charge per item in the order. Note that these numbers can vary greatly depending on the nature of the items you’re shipping.

Return or Restocking Fees – This is what the 3PL company will charge to process and re-enter in inventory a customer return. These fees are normally a little higher than pick and pack fees to cover inspection and handling.

Storage Fees – These are typically charged based on the amount of space (in cubic feet or meters) your inventory takes up in the product fulfillment company’s warehouse. Typical rates can range from $0.25 to $0.50 per cubic foot, or more per square foot or meter.

Set-Up Charge – Covering everything from training to shopping cart integration and various administrative tasks, the Set-Up charge will range from $100 to $500, perhaps more, depending on exactly what’s required.

Monthly Service Charge – This account management fee can from $50 to $100 a month; it will cover the recurring administrative tasks required by your account, all necessary paperwork as well as shipping materials.

There are other types of charges you could be charged by your order fulfillment company, but these are the main ones. What is important is that you are aware of every single charge, one-time, recurring or per-order that your 3PL will invoice you for. This can help you make an informed decision about outsourcing your fulfillment department with all the numbers in hand. Be especially wary of hidden fees, which can cancel all out the savings you have made by outsourcing your order fulfillment department.

What To Look For in an Ecommerce Fulfillment Company

Good price and good service, what else is there? There is more to order fulfillment than meets the eye!

best-canadian-fulfillment-centerThere are many factors to consider when choosing an order fulfillment company, and choosing wisely at the beginning of a business relationship can be very profitable. On the flip side, choosing a ecommerce fulfillment company casually and without doing your homework can have catastrophic consequences!

Terms – What are the terms of the fulfillment company you are considering? If they are trying to lock you in a long-term contract, it is perhaps because they know that you’ll want to leave them soon. These companies try to build their customer base through contracts rather than with value and customer service. Where would you rather be?

Price – You’re in business to make money, and outsourcing you eCommerce fulfillment should be a source of increased profit, not a drain. Getting the best price for your fulfillment services should be a priority, but be careful to read the fine print! Some disreputable fulfillment companies try to lure in customers with attractive prices, yet wallop them with hidden charges the second they outgrow their ‘plan’, or for other reasons. Getting the best price involves counting all costs, not just the obvious ones!

Warehouse Location – The ideal order fulfillment company will have a warehouse geographically located near most of your customers, as this will significantly contribute to lowering your drop-shipping costs. If your order fulfillment center is located near or on a major transport hub, this will also reduce your inbound shipping costs.

Technology – Ecommerce is the spearhead of modern retail practices, so why should your order fulfillment center not be at the technological forefront of its field? Complete and seamless shopping cart integration, real-time updates and complete customer oversight and control through advanced web-based control panels should be required of any company that bills itself as an ecommerce fulfillment expert!

Experience – In Ecommerce Order Fulfillment as in everything, there is no substitute for experience. Many companies will advertise that they do all types of fulfillment, but what kind of ecommerce fulfillment experience do they have? Choosing an experienced company means that they have already had their growing pains, and will be able hit the ground running with your orders.

Get started today by clicking on the green button; fill out the simple form and we’ll be in touch shortly with real-world order fulfillment options for your Canadian orders.

Finding the Best Pick and Pack Company

Know what to look for and what counts most when deciding on a pick and pack order fulfillment partner.

picking-and-packingPick and pack order fulfillment company specialize in picking your orders, packaging them according to the highest international standards, and shipping them to your customer, in your name, within agreed-upon delays and according to the level of service selected either by you, or by your customer. CanadianFulfillmentCenter.com has investigated and pre-approved the best order fulfillment and pick-and-pack fulfillment companies in the country, and can help you make an informed decision as to which company to choose.

Pick and Pack Fulfillment: Reading Between The Lines

If you were to take them at their word, every single Canadian order fulfillment center can do everything, from Ecommerce fulfillment, pick and pack, custom packaging and more. The bottom line is that it’s easy to claim things; it’s always more difficult to deliver, and you don’t want your company and your precious customers to be the guinea pigs as your order fulfillment partner experiments with new procedures. CanadianFulfillmentCenter.com helps you cut through the empty claims and go straight to the core of the matter, letting you identity precisely which pick and pack fulfillment warehouse can help you achieve your goals.

Remember that Pricing Isn’t Everything

The advertised price is one thing, and for obvious reasons, it will always be as low as can be. Read the service agreements carefully and find out if your potential order fulfillment partner is likely to hit you with hidden fees. Consider as well the advertised error rate, and do your research about customer satisfaction. Unhappy customers, poor service, and broken or defective merchandise can be a lot more expensive than a minor advertised price difference.

The bottom line is that you need a order fulfillment partner that can prove to be a partner in more than just name: price is always important, but so are communication and customer service. To find the ideal order fulfillment partner, click on the green button to the right of your screen and get started!

If you’re ready to get started now, just click the red button below, and complete the Quote Request Form.

One of our polite and dedicated representatives will be in touch with you shortly to offer you order fulfillment options appropriate to your situation.