Maybe you’re running out of storage space. Perhaps you’re falling behind on customer orders. Or it could be that you keep losing track of inventory. Whatever it is, you need help getting client orders out the door.
In looking for a partner who can provide optimal support for your needs, you keep coming across terms like logistics, warehousing, and fulfillment. What’s the difference between these services, and does a company need all three?
What are Logistics?
Logistics is a broad category that encompasses the “how” of your company’s materials and goods. Logistics includes transportation between locations, movements within a company, and inventory control. For example, how will we get the finished products out of inventory and into the customer’s hands? Or, how do we transport raw materials from the offsite warehouse and move them into the production line?
Almost all companies need logistics of some sort. But not all logistics companies provide the same type of support. For example, some logistics companies only focus on transporting materials, while others may offer warehousing and order fulfillment services.
What is Warehousing?
Warehousing is the part of logistics management that’s rooted in the “where.” As you’d probably guess, warehousing is all about where materials are stored. It’s the process of keeping finished products and raw materials where they need to be — either before they are sold or before they become part of the production process.
As part of the process, warehousing companies receive orders, check, and inventory goods. Warehousing can be valuable if you need a little — or a lot — extra space. Some warehousing companies may offer logistics services or fulfill product orders. But you’ll want to check with them to make sure.
What is Order Fulfillment?
Order fulfillment is a type of logistics centered around satisfying customer orders. The process starts when a customer places an order, but it doesn’t always end when they receive it. If a buyer wants to return the product, that’s part of order fulfillment too.
Why an Offsite Fulfillment Warehouse is Ideal for Customer Orders
An offsite fulfillment center like Point B can meet all your logistics, fulfillment, and warehousing needs for all your customer orders. Specific benefits include:
- The ability to scale – You don’t need to worry about where to store things when you’re ordering products. You can even ship the products directly to the warehouse.
- Keeping popular products in stock – An inventory management system will alert you when you’re getting low on crucial items so you can reorder before you run out.
- Virtual shelves that match physical inventory – Depending on your website design, you may be able to connect the inventory management system directly into your e-commerce site. The benefit? Customers only order what’s available, and sold items are automatically subtracted from inventory.
- Accurate, cost-effective packaging and shipping – Partnering with a fulfillment center can translate to fewer mispicks for more accurate orders — and usually fewer shipping costs.
- Customer service support – Chances are you’re not eager to spend your time resolving shipping issues such as lost packages or damaged products. A fulfillment company can deal with the issues, so you have more time for the fun stuff.
- Streamlined to other marketing services – If you work with Point B for order fulfillment, we can also source promotional items and print materials you may need for your inventory.
Choose Point B for Logistics, Warehousing, and Fulfillment
If you’re struggling to keep up with customer orders, Point B can help. As one of Minnesota’s top partners for order fulfillment services, we support businesses of all sizes with warehousing and logistics for customer orders.