Especially if you live in an area with significant climate variance and extremes of temperature, a temperature controlled storage solution is an important consideration. Your pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, or nutrition products could suffer spoilage from an insufficiently temperature controlled warehouse. Similarly, the wrong level of humidity could cause significant problems for your consumer electronics or consumables. A climate controlled warehouse can protect your stock from all of these issues. Enquiring about a 3PL warehouse’s climate control options can also be a useful segue into asking about the cleanliness of the facility and how much maintenance it receives.
It’s also worth considering the warehouse space itself when you’re visiting the premises (and you should always endeavor to before making a decision). Is there room to expand with you? What space can they provide if you come out with a new line of products, perhaps as many as six new SKUs? Is the warehouse efficiently laid out? How do products get from your shelves to fulfillment to the docks, and are there any obvious problems or bottlenecks that could occur? You don’t want your fulfillment process to be sluggish. That will reflect badly on your customer service compared to your rivals. Even details like the number of docks and ease of access can make a big difference to the efficiency of the storage facility. After all, if the truck that’s supposed to be picking up your orders has to wait two hours because another company’s shipment is being offloaded, that can make the difference between your products reaching their recipients on Friday or Monday. Look for resourcefulness, professionalism, and efficiency. That said, even a little redundancy can be very useful when it comes to things like docks, forklifts, and the like. After all, if something should go wrong or break down, you don’t want it to mean paralyzation of the entire facility.