When an ecommerce company is in its early days, the chances are that order fulfilment will be handled in-house. That’s fine when the inventory is limited and there is no revenue or cash flow to invest in third party order fulfilment. However, Shipping and Handling of Texas, ecommerce fulfilment experts out of Sugar Land, Texas, say that the step up to third party fulfilment is one of the surest signs that a company is growing.
The reason for this is that third party fulfilment is usually needed when inventory increases, and it can only be invested in when profits and cash flow are sufficient. Therefore, an ecommerce company investing in this for the first time is clearly on its way up.
Nevertheless, there is one problem with third-party fulfilment. It loses something of the personal touch and adds another brand name to your package, in theory making things a bit less personal.
It needn’t actually be like this though, and there are a few shipping tricks that you can apply to claw back some of that personal touch. Many of these can also apply when your company is still at the in-house fulfilment stage.
Personalization for In-House and Third-Party Fulfilment
Nonetheless, an important point should certainly be made at this stage. How you personalize your packages or apply other delivery “tricks” is a bit different when done through a third-party fulfilment service compared to when done in-house. It is not simply a case of it being easier in-house and more difficult when another company is handling it, though.
Certainly, when you are preparing orders yourself – especially for a limited number of products – you have the advantage of greater control, but you also have more limited resources. With a third-party fulfilment service, you can potentially make use of their greater resources to do something more impressive. Many third-party fulfilment services offer this service, and even if they do not, there are still things that can be requested to make your packages stand out.
Creative Shipping Tricks
So, with all of these important points covered, here follows some neat tricks you can try to put a smile on your customer’s faces when they finally receive your package.
Introduce Your Business and Reinforce Your Brand
Whether in-house or through a third-party service, you can always add something extra to the package that reinforces your brand and makes the whole endeavor look a little more professional. For example, you could add a business card to every package (certainly something possible through third party contactors), and give customers more information about who you are.
You could also add a professional packing slip, one that prominently features your logo and offsetting the anonymity that comes with sending out packages with the fulfillment service’s name on it.
Add a Little Gift
This can be as big or small as you like, depending on your resources. For example, these can also be standardized as well as personal, and they need not increase the overall price of the shipping (if they are small enough). With in-house fulfilment, you do it yourself; for third party, just add it to the contents of the order.
With any third-party fulfilment service, you will usually have the option to select different types of packaging materials. The same is naturally true for in-house. The great thing about this technique is many of these packaging options can be lighter than the standard, thereby making the shipping potentially cheaper. Choose something elegant that stands out.
These little tips and tricks for fulfilment seem like small thigs, but the brand identification and customer satisfaction they can foster are potentially limitless.