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Ask any successful retailer what is the key to success and logistics will be in the answer somewhere. Simply put, efficient logistics sees your products delivered to the customer in a timely fashion and without this, it is next to impossible for your retail business to grow. It is one thing to sell a product to an online customer, but completely something else to have that product packaged and delivered. If you would like to improve your logistics efficiency, here are a few useful tips.
Make Sure You Are Using The Best 3PL Provider
Your 3PL logistics partner is a crucial component to your retail success, and you really should make sure that they are top notch. If, for any reason, you are unhappy with your current 3PL provider, all it takes to source another is an online search. They might also be a little cheaper than your existing provider, although price should never be the main focus when sourcing a 3PL provider, and if you are clear about your needs, this will help the contractor to tailor their services to better meet your requirements.
Clear And Concise Communication
It is often the case where a 3PL provider is unaware of what their client really wants, so make sure you communicate your needs clearly. This might be done through email, on the phone, or face to face, and with 3PL, assuming the provider understands is simply not good enough. This could be called laying the foundation for a successful partnership and by making sure that your needs are clearly communicated, your 3PL partner has a goal to aim for.
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Give Adequate Transition Time
It can take 2 or even 3 months for a 3PL provider to tailor their service to suit the client’s needs, so don’t expect miracles overnight. Working together will help you to iron out any small problems, and at least for the first month of the contract, you should be watching everything, looking for issues, no matter how trivial they may seem.
Align Your Interests
3PL providers work best when they have a vested interest, so why not work out some sort of bonus package, whereby the 3PL provider is financially rewarded for a job well done? Many retailers do this and they are assured of the 3PL provider’s full attention, especially when there are financial rewards.
Manage And Monitor Performance
This is the key to assessing your 3PL provider’s services and this should be something you focus on during the first 6 months of the partnership, ironing out any small issues that you come across. Like any successful partnership, it is all about working together and with regular feedback from you, the client, your 3PL partner can improve their performance to meet your high standards.
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It is worth investing a lot of time in setting up a good working relationship with your 3PL provider, as this is the best way to ensure that you are happy with their service. Working as a team will ensure optimum performance, and without your full support, it is difficult for any 3PL provider to go that extra mile.