Tag Archives: small business

A Closer Look At Small Business Shipping

Shipping has become a crucial part of a businesses success, especially small businesses. With the competition among retailers constantly increasing, the demand for fast and affordable shipping grows as well. We know how shipping looks from a customer’s perspective, but how does it really work from the inside? What challenges do companies face to provide their customers with a smooth shipping experience?

The state of the market and growing influence of customer’s needs puts small businesses under pressure of managing excellent service, fast and free delivery, and high-end product quality. In some cases, to supply free, next-day shipping, companies have to make product quality a second priority. When you over-concentrate on the product itself, your customer service may suffer.

It is possible for your business to find an optimal shipping solution. Companies are seeking reliable, affordable solutions to continue to make their customers happy every day.

What challenges do small businesses face when arranging to ship? 

Essentially, setting up an efficient transportation strategy can be challenging for some companies. Here are some of the major obstacles businesses have to deal with:

Transportation costs

Price is the initial concern when picking a small business shipping option. Considering an extremely diverse nature of products, volumes and shipping frequency, it’s hard to find a one-stop shop for all your transportation needs. Especially, when most of the options are quite costly. With the pressure of fast and free shipping, companies try to save wherever possible to afford such shipping characteristics. With that being said, the main challenge of small business transportation is finding an affordable, reliable and efficient shipping partner.

Organizing and operations

Another major undertaking of small business transportation is the lack of planning and organization. It is hard to manage everything from point A to B, and strategic planning is often an outsider in this game. It is common for small businesses to lack automation and professional software, however, tools like a transportation management system or even online shipping service can be extremely beneficial for process automation. Apart from that, you gain complete visibility into shipment spends, which lets you reduce extra costs.

In-house logistics department or outsourcing?

Many companies today decide to outsource their logistics and supply chain management to third-party providers. Despite some businesses considering it a risky decision, outsourcing can actually make your transportation much less painful. A 3PL can supply you with technology so that you don’t have to invest in your own software. Additionally, they can be your one point of contact and ‘shop’ through various carriers and negotiate exclusive freight rates for you. All of the processes are reported to you. On average, shippers admit from 10 to 30 percent of savings after using 3PL services.

Final thoughts

Ultimately, fast and cheap shipping is not as easy to provide as it seems. Small businesses face many challenges to supply their customers with good service and affordable shipping, however, there are many ways to save on transportation costs and increase shipping efficiency. One of the solutions for simplifying small business transportation is outsourcing, which can be very useful for the companies.

Learn more about our small business transportation services!

5 Reasons a Small Business Can Benefit From a 3PL

In the age of Amazon, the only thing that is growing faster than the e-commerce sector is customers’ demands. Once a shipment is scheduled or an item is purchased, the customer is constantly looking for updates on the shipment, no matter if it’s an individual shipper or a large corporation. There is no surprise that companies who provide the fastest and cheapest shipping have a significant advantage over competitors. New technologies are taking over the world, and the world wants you to be as fast and convenient as possible. Companies should consider the services of a 3PL for small business needs.

Customer satisfaction is the main priority for most businesses. Quality and shipment speed is crucial to the customer’s experience and worrying about customer service while managing a whole supply chain is not an easy thing to do. And the cherry on top of it all is, you can’t really maintain everything at the highest level all by yourself.small business front

This is the point where third-party logistics services come in to help save you from a bundle of unwanted work. 3PLs act as the middleman service that takes on all the processes of shipping. They provide all the infrastructure, systems, data and equipment you need to have successful shipments. Building a strong relationship with your 3PL is crucial to a successful supply chain. In a nutshell, you focus on your core specialization while a 3PL provider takes care of your logistics until the last part of the delivery.

Here are the main reasons why using a 3PL for small businesses is beneficial:

It saves you time

If you are a small business owner, you have probably spent a lot of time setting up your businesses shipping to find the right carriers, keep track of all of the paperwork, and handle the freight. This can be very stressful and time consuming for business owners. Outsourcing your company’s logistics can give you more time to focus on your business.

It can save you money

Brokers can provide you with the lowest prices to help save your business money on shipments. Moreover, you just pay for the space and time that you use. For example, less-than-truckload (LTL) shipping allows you to share the truck with other users, but to pay only for space your freight takes up inside of the truck.

It helps ensure customer service

Maintaining the supply chain requires a lot of attention to details. This can cause distractions and may not always bring your customers the positive experience they want to have. When using a 3PL for small business, the provider arranges the cooperation with qualified drivers and carriers, who go through regular reviews, to help ensure your shipments are handled with care and are properly taken care of. Picking the right provider is a good investment for your business.

It provides you with resources

At a first glance, the transportation and shipping process may look like moving an object from A to B. In reality, it’s a complex chain of operations that demand lots of special bulky and pricey equipment. Third-party logistics services save the situation and bring all the needed equipment to complete every single order, no matter how big it is.

It gives you a network

Constantly communicating with all the people involved in the supply chain may be overwhelming. Brokers already have a developed network of professional suppliers and will choose the most relevant to match your requirements.

Ultimately, using a 3PL for small business logistics needs can be beneficial in many ways from cost savings to significant improvements in the entire supply chain flow.

If you are considering outsourcing your logistics, read more about the first steps in outsourcing your businesses transportation management.