2020 holiday shopping is already in full swing – happening earlier than ever before. In addition to making early purchases, many other consumer buying trends are looking different for Q4, including holiday returns.
The busiest shopping season of the year is almost here. And industry experts say it will start earlier than it’s ever have and shift even more into the ecommerce realm – thanks to a rash of circumstances made possible by, you guessed it, Covid-19.
Record-breaking ecommerce sales have become the norm this year. Reports show that ecommerce sales increased 3X in April and May, with activity slightly less but still strong in June and July (July numbers were almost double compared to late February). The “new normal” of ecommerce should remain stable in August and leading into to 4Q.
Just when you think ecommerce order fulfillment could not grow any faster, the year 2020 hits. According to a report issued by Adobe last month, total ecommerce spending in May accelerated to $82.5 billion. That’s a 77.8% increase year over year.
Warehouse. Distribution center. Fulfillment center.
Although the terms seem similar and many people often interchange them, they each serve a distinct purpose and are quite different from each other. For example, a fulfillment center has much greater capabilities. Let’s break down the functions of each to better understand their roles in the fulfillment supply chain.
The past several weeks have been a roller coaster ride for people and businesses everywhere, and eCommerce fulfillment is no exception.
While some industries are facing declines due to COVID-19, others are experiencing significant growth.
Companies that have products to sell in these ever-changing times have no choice but to go to market in different ways. eCommerce is no doubt the sales channel with the biggest growth over the past several years, and its sales power keeps rising. That said, a company’s long-term success is only as strong as their ecommerce fulfillment operations – even if they have an amazing product, a great website, and effective marketing.
With the COVID-19 virus still spreading and concerns continuing to grow, restrictions are also expanding. Many companies have been forced to modify their business operations. Amazon is one of the recent companies to do so, announcing that sellers who rely on Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) will be restricted from utilizing Amazon for new shipments until […]
The 2019 holiday ecommerce numbers are in – spending in the U.S. for Nov and Dec hit a record $142.5 billion, which is up 13.1% from last year. Worldwide ecommerce spending was up 8% to $723 billion.
With your Q4 selling season strategy finalized and the peak holiday rush not here quite yet, now is a good time to look ahead to your 2020 fulfillment plans and maybe a new 3rd party fulfillment partner.
Your customers are the heart of your eCommerce business, and their satisfaction should be your number one priority. Address the five following customer pain points immediately, or risk unhappy customers and lost sales:
Hard to believe, but we’re more than halfway through 2019. With so many moving pieces to align in your supply chain, it’s critical to finalize your Q4 strategy now to ensure smooth fulfillment operations in the busy months ahead.
USPS has recently announced the following changes that will be effective on June 23, 2019…
The Multichannel Merchant 2019 eCommerce Operations Summit took place last month in Columbus, Ohio. This annual conference, entering its 9th year, is devoted exclusively to direct-to-customer and omnichannel operations & fulfillment.
As more businesses see their ecommerce sales numbers grow, many face a dilemma. Should they continue to manage their warehouse and ecommerce fulfillment operations in-house, or should they outsource to a third-party logistics company? One of the biggest deciding factors often has to do with their inventory storage capacity.
For any business handling their eCommerce order fulfillment in-house, you know there are more than just one or two critical steps involved in getting orders to your customers. And if anyone of those steps faces a hurdle, it can delay your orders from getting out the door and into your customers’ hands. That impacts your brand experience – and ultimately your bottom line.
Are you thinking it’s time for your business to get help with your fulfillment operations, but you’re not sure how to choose the right fulfillment partner? As a recognized Multichannel Merchant Top 3PL Provider for 4 consecutive years, PFC is a trusted fulfillment partner for businesses of all sizes and across many industries. With 40+ years of experience, we know a thing or two about fulfillment and eCommerce shipping! Let’s take a look at some of the most important factors that go into choosing the right fulfillment center for your business.
The numbers are in on the 2018 holiday shopping season, and once again records were shattered. Industry reports say U.S. shoppers spent $126 billion on online shopping over the holiday season – nearly 17% higher than in 2017.
If you haven’t put the wheels in motion for your peak season planning, now is the time. All signs lead to another record breaking year for eCommerce holiday sales, with the majority of those transactions happening soon. Here are 8 ways to prep your DC for peak season 2018:
It’s no secret that U.S. online sales continue to grow annually. A recent Wall Street Journal article reports that ecommerce retail sales in the first quarter of 2018 were $123.7 billion dollars – that’s about a 16% increase from last year.
The General Data Protection Regulation – more commonly called GDPR – is the European Union’s (EU) collection of privacy regulations, which take effect May 25th. The significant, broad-based legislation focuses on data security, privacy, accountability and rights for data subjects, among other things.
PFC recently attended Shoptalk 2018 as an exhibitor and sponsor. We’d like to thank all who stopped by our booth and chatted with our fulfillment team!
For most brands, the dust has finally settled on yet another busy peak holiday season.
Annual rate increases and changes are now in effect for most carriers including FedEx, UPS and USPS – and as eCommerce transactions continue to skyrocket, these carriers and others will undoubtedly continue to announce changes each year.
For now, here’s a recap of what you need to know.
The evolution of consumer buying habits continues – as proven when Cyber Monday 2017 became the largest online shopping day in U.S. history. A record $6.59 billion in digital transactions were made; that’s nearly a 17% increase from 2016. And mobile sales also had a day for the history books – accounting for a record $2 billion of Cyber Monday sales.
By now, online retailers should be done with their holiday fulfillment planning and anxiously awaiting the surge of eCommerce activity that’s just around the corner. If you’re still trying to pull together some last-minute preparations, however, take a minute to read our earlier post, “7 Fulfillment Steps to Take Now for Q4 2017”.
It’s summertime, but brands are busy preparing for the onslaught of holiday sales that are headed their way in a few months. And based on last year’s numbers, they should get ready for more eCommerce transactions than ever before.
The first few months of 2017 have seen several major brands closing their retail stores or closing up shop entirely. JC Penney, Kmart, Payless Shoes, RadioShack and Staples are just a few of the brands that have fallen prey to consumer shopping habits that are shifting from brick-and-mortar to the Internet.
Amazon has become the unquestionable leader of eCommerce and has changed the way consumers shop online. Because of its market dominance, many brands use Amazon as a channel for their online sales. But what about order fulfillment – who should brands trust to get their orders into the hands of customers? Some choose Amazon’s fulfillment service, Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA). While FBA is certainly bigger than other third-party fulfillment providers, that doesn’t mean it’s better or more cost-effective.
Choosing a fulfillment partner for your business is a critical decision that can help drive the success of your brand. Picking the right one can bring significant operational cost savings that will lead to your brand growth. Picking the wrong one can prove costly on many levels.
Follow these 5 steps when it’s time to choose a fulfillment partner and you’ll be better prepared to make the right decision.
By now, anyone familiar with the world of retail knows that the omnichannel shopping experience started picking up some serious steam a few years ago. And just like a hurricane swirling off the Atlantic coast this time of year, its presence has no doubt made an impact.
Do you sell online? Then you should know that many online retailers ignore the very important topic of location when it comes to their fulfillment and shipping operations. And ignoring that topic is an error that will cost you money.
Customer returns are a cost that every retailer deals with. Whether it’s due to a defective product or a customer who has changed their mind, the cost of a return will always have a negative impact on a retailer’s bottom line.
Not sure if outsourcing eCommerce fulfillment is the best choice for your online store? Aside from getting a lot of day-to-day tasks and challenges off your plate, working with a third-party logistics warehouse that specializes in online retail fulfillment is a great way to save money and significantly improve service levels and the brand experience to your customers.
With 2015 recently passing, it’s a good time to look back at the past year and the ways ecommerce order fulfillment and shipping has changed. There is no doubt the online retail space is evolving fast as the pressure for faster and cheaper delivery continues to shape the industry. Online retailers and carriers alike are working hard to adjust to the demands of this new, dynamic marketplace and the sky-high customer expectations that are part of retail today.
If you sell apparel from your online store, you understand the unique fulfillment and shipping challenges clothing presents. Regardless if you manage the process in-house, or work with a third party, it’s necessary to consider the many ways apparel fulfillment is different than shipping any other type of product.
CFOs and other senior executives in every industry are pressured constantly to lower their inventory investment – all while maintaining accessibility, availability and quality assurance across the product-delivery continuum. Promotion Fulfillment Center’s (PFC) fulfillment systems are designed to optimize inventory management – enabling companies to contain and maintain cost and continuity across every service level.
With careful planning and a little legwork, you can work around this shipping rate hike that was thrust upon the world by UPS and FedEx, or at least make it more tolerable. And we can help!
With the holidays rapidly approaching and ecommerce shopping ramping up, this is a very crucial time of year to ensure you are delivering on your brand experience.
As predicted, online holiday sales are expected to rise double-digits again this year, up 14 percent from 2013 according to a forecast from Deloitte. Similar to last year, 2014 has a shorter holiday shopping season, with only 26 days between Black Friday and Christmas.
Today’s marketplace is forever changing and becoming more competitive by the minute. If merchants don’t adopt the strategies required to navigate the ever-shifting landscape, they will inevitably fall behind the pack and risk the inability to recover.
Brands can no longer rely on simply offering a quality product at an affordable price to remain competitive. They also need to provide excellent customer service that drives repeat purchases and enhances reputation. While brands may be in the business of providing a superior product, they often fall short when it comes to meeting customer expectations on the back end of the purchase. Below are a few reasons why outsourcing fulfillment can elevate your customer service experience and dramatically reduce your cost per order.
If you’re going to entrust your business transactions to a third party fulfillment center, they should be prepared to prove themselves worthy. A center that employs leading technology that provides easily-accessible, real-time reporting and analytics, can enable you to strategize and recalibrate business decisions on a day-to-day basis.
According to numerous sources, the changes FedEx and UPS will make to their dimensional weight fees effective January 1, 2015 will impact up to 33% of all ground packages. These higher rates can be mitigated with some additional planning and analysis. This article will explore four ways you can reduce your rates.
The growth of omnichannel shopping transactions has created the need for increased inventory control as well as flexible, faster and more accurate order fulfillment. These factors contribute to the need to convert distribution warehouses into dynamic, integrated and scalable product fulfillment centers.
The age of the smart shopper is upon us – and it’s not going to change anytime soon. While the competition for consumer dollars has become increasingly fierce, brands must deploy a wide range of promotional strategies and solutions to give them an edge in today’s marketplace.
Each year brings a new set of challenges for brands as technology continues to play a larger role in consumer shopping behaviors, marketing execution and logistics management. There was much to be learned from the innovations of 2013 and here we offer five key takeaways to ensure a smooth and seamless transition into 2014.
Today, 86 percent of consumers review the returns policy during the purchase lifecycle, making returns a critical component of the consumer experience.
How do brands respond to these demands while still remaining profitable? This article will address some of the latest trends in reverse logistics and offer tips on what makes a good package returns policy.
Like it or not, the holiday shopping season arrives earlier and earlier each year and no one feels its effects more than online retailers. Ecommerce sales are expected to rise an additional 15.1 percent over last year, with a projected $61.8 billion spent in November and December alone. The time is now to prepare for the holiday rush and keep your brand on shoppers’ “nice list.” Here are 11 fulfillment tips to help get you through the season.
The ability to meet the demands of a growing eCommerce market is the key to survival. When it comes to order processing, inventory management, and fulfillment, there are five key questions to ask when seeking out a third-party fulfillment (3PF) partner.
Today more and more companies are choosing to outsource their fulfillment to an experienced 3PF (third party fulfillment) provider. But with thousands of 3PF companies to choose from, how do you find the provider that is right for you and your brand?
Whether you’re a seasoned DRTV veteran or exploring your first campaign, this article will help guide you through the potential pitfalls surrounding direct response.
How can large to mid-sized online retailers remain competitive while keeping costs in check? In this article, we offer three simple tips to help brands trim unnecessary expenses from their supply chain while keeping consumers happy and coming back for more.