Overcomming Logistics Challenges for Small Business
Small business faces numerous challenges when starting up. If you sell a product, you will experience a huge learning curve on the logistics side of your business. As your business grows, volumes increase, complexity increases, so does the need for specialized knowledge and expertise. However, in the beginning it can be a “chicken or the egg” scenario where you just can’t get to the next level without overcoming some basic logistics challenges.
Being able to deal with increasing complexity
If you’re a business just starting out and shipping from your home, or small unit, as demand for your product increase, so does the complexity. Picking and packing becomes a full time job and dealing with multiple vendors and transportation providers eats up a significant amount of your time. Implementing systems to deal with this complexity also becomes a real time consuming task. As a small business owner, your time is the most precious thing. Work vs. family vs. personal time puts you in a scenario where you really have to consider every minute you spend. You have to ask yourself, should you be doing it yourself or outsourcing it? Outsourcing pick/pack operations can help you deal with the complexity of your growing business without having to invest time and effort in information and data systems to track it.
Matching service levels with your larger competitors
Being able to deliver next day, or internationally, is no small feat. It requires coordination between your pick/pack operation, your vendors and your transportation providers. This can be a daunting task for a small business owner to manage along with everything else they have to face. By partnering with a seasoned logistics provider they can help you set up shipping zones, international deliveries, as well as, being able to negotiate more favorable freight rates which they can pass along to you. This puts you on a level playing field with the big guys.
Keeping up with the latest data and information systems
To succeed in today’s world, business needs to know their customers and the service levels that are being provided to them. Customers want to know “on demand” when their shipment will be delivered and when it shipped. Plus, you as a business owner will want to track type and frequency of orders by customer, geographic region, or by promotion. Implementing your own data systems to track all this can be complex and add another project to your already full plate. Another advantage of outsourcing your logistics and pick/pack operation is that these solutions come standard with many fulfillment companies. This saves you the time and aggravation of setting up your own systems.
Big Fluctuations in Demand
As a small business you rarely have the luxury of regular, steady business. I comes in big inflows and then periods of relative slow demand. It can be expensive to invest in systems, equipment and space to accommodate your busy periods vs. your slow periods. Outsourcing is a great way for small business reduce their costs when experiencing surges in demand. When outsourcing, you only pay for what you use, so peaks in demand are easily accommodated, and lulls in demand don’t come with all that uncovered overhead.
Dare Marketing has Solutions for you
If you’re considering outsourcing some or all of your fulfillment or logistics functions, it’s worth your time to give Dare Marketing a call. Dare is an experienced fulfillment house for all your logistics needs.