Owning an business comes with a number of challenges, from creating an effective digital marketing strategy to setting SMART goals to propel you forward. If your company sells its products online then another consideration is the decision of how to fulfil your online orders and long term storage of stock.
You may have considered and even found out what the expense of having to rent or purchase a warehouse would be in order to store your products. Generally, your own warehousing solution is quite expensive and so you may have decided you need to look at what other options are available.
There are two other methods that you can use when looking at eCommerce fulfilment. The first is to opt for own brand drop shipping while the other is to find as many distributors as possible to store and ship your own branded goods. Both of these methods have benefits that are a serious consideration.
Own Brand Drop shipping
Drop shipping enables you to sell your goods without having to keep the stock yourself. This means that once orders are made with you, a third party will take care of arranging the packaging and shipping of the item. It effectively means that you take a hands-off approach and rely on an automated sync to ensure your customers receive their goods on time and in full. This is a feasible option that works for many, and it allows you the benefit of being able take care of all the other things which matter in your business.
A good drop shipping company will send your products in plain packaging rather than their own brand being displayed, so your customer is not even aware that the products did not come directly from you. Many (including Xune) will even package your branded promotional materials in with the shipment to add a further layer of customer satisfaction.
Further to this, your drop shipper will fulfil orders not only from your website, but also from any other sales channel which you happen to sell on. This allows you to expand your online presence far and wide, without needing to worry about integrating each channel with each other.
Many companies will get a lot of value in finding distributors to hold their stock and advertise and sell them. This will give you large recurring orders which can have a delightful impact on your cash flow into your business.
A downside, is that these companies will normally insist on huge discounts in return for the volume which if you are not careful could erode too much of your eCommerce profit margin to remain viable. A middle ground is finding smaller companies who while not ordering in as greater quantities, will still place regular and larger than B2C orders for your goods directly with you.
Finding these companies can be a tough ask, as unless you’ve got a strong plan of action to attract these leads, engage them in your brand and convert them via your website you could find yourself performing massive amounts of outreach with little effect.
Bring the Two Methods Together
A powerful combination is combining these two methods together. While your chosen distributors place regular and large orders (which your drop shipper can fulfil if required) your website and other sales channels can sell a steady flow of orders B2C. This combination can be dynamite and will produce a regular and sustainable cashflow for your company.
If you own a smaller eCommerce business then you are encouraged to choose a warehouse and fulfilment company with low long-term storage rates and the ability to scale up as you grow. Own brand drop shipping is ideal if you don’t have time to manage the processing of sales due to other commitments which fill your days or if you simply plan on operating with the passive income mindset.
It is also a feasible option if up until now you have been picking, packing and posting all your orders yourself, and increased sales means you can no longer manage the workload. You’ll probably find that warehousing and fulfilment allows you to continue to increase sales without reducing the quality of the service.
When you automate e-commerce order fulfilment using a fulfilment company such as Xune, it means that you can continue to offer your own brand products without the worry of having to manage stock levels or the processing of orders.
For example, we can actively manage your stock from a warehouse in the UK and automatically fulfil your orders as soon as they are made. This will ensure that you can continue to deliver a great service to customers while continuing to benefit from the perfect blend of two distribution methods.