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Unfolding four key shipping challenges

Suppliers, Order Management

Initially, shipping appears straightforward—a matter of choosing the right product, securely packing it, arranging carrier shipment, labeling, and dispatching it to the customer.

However, shipping entails intricacies beyond surface understanding. It encompasses multifaceted steps and demands that fluctuate based on your business's scale, product range, market scope, and retailer collaborations

Whether you're a small business managing shipments from a storage facility or a large corporation dispatching products from a warehouse comparable to Amazon's, you're likely encountering shipping efficiency challenges. Our customers emphasize that streamlining shipping processes ranks high among their priorities for the upcoming year, extending into 2024.

This blog aims to detail four methods for unraveling shipping complexities. Additionally, we'll delve into the advantages of utilizing EDI to automate and enhance your shipping procedures.

Grasp the unique requirements of retailers and their order management structures

Retailers impose particular expectations on how suppliers fulfill orders. These expectations extend beyond transmitting data via an Advance Shipping Notice (ASN) and encompass:

Label positioning: defining the placement of labels, barcodes, and branding elements on packaging. Packaging options: deciding whether a combination of products can be in a single box or pallet, or if only one type of item is permitted.

Specifications for weight, dimensions, or carton sizes: variations in weight limits, dimensions, and carton sizes for individual items or bulk shipments, which can differ across retailers

Additionally, distinct shipping requirements accompany each fulfillment model. Drop-ship fulfillment demands handling larger shipment volumes, often with same-day shipping. On the other hand, bulk shipments might occur less frequently but encompass various SKUs in a single order, necessitating longer lead times for staging each shipment.

Suppliers must adapt their processes accordingly for each situation; failure to do so might result in chargebacks or strained retail relationships.

Discover the optimal shipping choice

Shipping expenses can significantly impact profits, often more than any other fulfillment cost.

Rate shopping encompasses comparing carriers to identify the most economical shipping solutions. Through the assessment of elements like shipping rates and delivery durations, informed decisions can be made, striking a balance between cost-effectiveness and service quality.

Efficiently managing packaging dimensions and weight is crucial for cutting down shipping expenses. Choosing suitably sized packaging not only decreases unused space but also lessens dimensional weight fees. While these approaches can lead to substantial savings, they often require trial and error or meticulous upfront planning

Implement automated tracking and communication

Regarding communication, furnishing Advance Shipping Notices (ASNs) or tracking details is crucial.

Within the wholesale sector, ASNs provide comprehensive pre-arrival shipment details, improving supply chain efficiency by specifying shipment contents, quantities, and anticipated delivery dates. By scanning the barcode label, retailers gain insight into package contents without opening it, enabling proactive inventory planning. In e-commerce, even basic information such as shipping dates and tracking numbers enhances transparency for customers, enabling them to anticipate their order's arrival.

These measures introduce intricacies to the shipping process but are vital in ensuring punctual and precise deliveries, aligning with customer expectations.

Enhance fulfillment selections

Suppliers encounter a critical choice in order fulfillment: whether to manage it internally or outsource to a third-party logistics provider (3PL).

Internal management of warehouse and shipping operations guarantees control over staffing and technology. Yet, maintaining this control demands significant investments in human resources, processes, methodologies, and advanced technologies.

Conversely, 3PLs offer an appealing option, delivering invaluable logistics expertise and established infrastructure. However, choosing the suitable 3PL necessitates thoughtful evaluation of location, space availability, quality control measures, and expertise in particular verticals or sectors.

Irrespective of the chosen direction, the essence lies in discovering a dependable 3PL ally or creating efficient internal processes. This choice not only guarantees seamless operations but also protects your brand reputation.

Strengthen your shipping strategy using EDI by Design

Shipping intricacies persist consistently. EDI by Design serves as your unwavering ally, simplifying the process across various order channels. Our comprehensive Fulfillment EDI solution simplifies ASN creation, and label printing, and automates shipping through seamless integration with your WMS or 3PL. No matter your picking and packing methods, our solution allows you to concentrate on your core business.

Reach out to our team for further insights. We'll navigate you through the intricacies of the shipping terrain, enabling you to achieve top-notch satisfaction with your customers