Being connected with a 3rd party logistics provider that really gets your business is the best relationship a retailer that requires a lot of order fulfillment can have.
Not only will that provider help you save big on things like shipping and keep your inventory at an optimal level that reduces overall costs, they can help you really connect to your customers in substantial ways. Unfortunately, not every 3PL relationship is meant to last, sometimes you have to face the fact that your 3PL isn’t performing like you expected.
Customers Change 3PLs for Various Reasons
Both bricks-and-clicks retailers and eCommerce companies rely on their relationships with 3PLs to see long-term success in their businesses. But sometimes, these aren’t partnerships that are meant to last. When you find yourself wondering why your 3rd party logistics partner isn’t delivering, it might be time to consider shopping around for a new one.
Are any of these issues making it difficult to move forward with your current setup?
- You’ve been happy with your 3PL’s service, but it seems like you could get a much better price somewhere else. After all, you’ve gotten three ads this month from new 3PLs eager to earn business with ground-floor prices. Is cheaper really better?
It’s hard to know unless you sit down and compare the two services on a feature-by-feature basis. A cheaper 3PL may be just that: cheap. Sometimes there’s value in paying slightly more for the experience and quality an established 3PL provides.
- Sure, you may not really get into the nuts and bolts of the tech that runs your 3rd party logistics partner, but you can easily see that you’re not getting the same level of transparency that your business contacts are.
Whether that’s because of a lack of tech at the 3PL or a lack of proper implementation, it’s an issue for you and your customers. Big Data is the way forward, it’s the cure for inefficiency in warehousing and it helps ensure that all your orders go out the door correctly the first time.
- Customer Service. There’s nothing more irritating than a company that can’t deliver on the most basic offering: customer service. When you’re constantly ignored, unable to access information you need to run your business or are treated like your account really doesn’t matter, it’s time to revisit your relationship.
Sure, that 3PL might be really inexpensive, but it’s the little things that matter, especially when that same company is handling your customer returns.
Even though the 3PL sector is booming, it doesn’t mean that your 3PL is doing all it can to give you the best service around. If you feel like it’s time for a change, make sure to consider the reasons you wanted to leave your old provider in the first place so that you don’t fall into the same trap again.