The struggle is real, and you know it. Shipping goods from A to B is not only about managing supply chain and logistics, which are already complicated enough with warehousing, transportation, and distribution to consider. It’s also about other things such as regulations, licenses, truckers, taxes, and unexpected shipping costs.
That is why you have shipping companies. A logistic company will handle the whole shipping process and lets you get back to your business.
But selecting the right logistics services provider can be a tough experience for every company. With 42% retailers in North America implemented shipping options include ship anywhere and ship from distribution centers, you would need a provider that you can rely on to deliver your goods on time and in good condition, while still offers an affordable price, to help you compete against others.
There are many choices out there, but before putting your company’s reputation and success in the hand of any logistic companies, here are 5 elements to consider.
In logistics, the focus often is on price and not on quality. But think about your customers. They want their orders to be delivered on time and in good condition. There is no good lowering the cost as much as possible – what if that means late delivery or lost/damaged goods? Every order that arrives late or broken adds hours extra work to your plate and takes away revenue. Don’t forget that your customers or business partners don’t judge you only based on your services, but the reputation of the shipping company is attached to yours as well.
In a new business arrangement, it’s always safer to put your trust in a reputable company. How many clients have they served? What type of reviews do they have online? If your chosen shipping company is a new one, consider their confidence – do they offer a money back guarantee in event of service failure?
Logistics is not a “one size fits all” industry. Courier services vary extensively, so you need to identify your requirements and think of all possible scenarios. Do you need an “on-time guaranteed” service or you are fine with a regular shipping service? Are storage facilities necessary? Can the company accommodate the shipping of items of the different type of sizes and weight? Will they assist you in preparing the documentation for customs? Is the chosen logistics company capable of shipping in Canada, well, at least in the areas where you are going to make most of your deliveries?
If you find it hard to filter the information on the Internet, consider check around or ask your business partners for advice on which courier services to use. When you have done your homework, discuss with the representatives of the shipping companies to confirm all of the information and ask about other details if needed.
Without any doubt, price is a huge consideration when choosing a logistics company. Due to customers’ expectations, many businesses have to cut down a lot on shipping costs. According to a study, 54% of shoppers abandoned their carts due to expensive shipping, while 39% abandoned their carts due to no free shipping. Ouch!
However, keep in mind that the lowest price isn’t always the best option. You get what you pay for – any shipping companies that beat out the cost of their competitors are often less reliable, offer less visibility, and usually fall short on customer service. Think “cost-effective”, not “cheap”.
If everything is going well, does your partner have the ability to scale with your business in the long run? A prospective logistics provider must be not only competent in the specific service areas that meet your company’s needs, but also be able to respond to your changing needs.