When shipping a few packages per day, a manual-entry workstation given to you for free by a carrier (FedEx, UPS, etc.) or even a multicarrier solution designed for an office can get the job done. However, systems like these aren’t conducive to productivity.
If you're a small-package shipper, the prospect of Amazon entering the package delivery market should be intriguing. Currently, doing business for you means offering a handful of carriers (UPS, FedEx and perhaps the U.S. Postal Service), so your clients have the best possible shipping options.
For those not familiar with warehouse automation systems, using print and apply processes typically means you are placing a label or labels on a box – in today’s example, we are specifically speaking of a small parcel shipment – that needs to add a carrier and/or box label automatically, via a print and apply mechanical process.
If you are still using a carrier or third-party shipping system that has a shipping screen, why? Perhaps you’ve never considered this question, but redesigning your system to remove the need for a shipping screen could lead to big cost savings, so it is worth evaluating for your own business.
In the past five years, e-commerce companies have seen a huge shift with how residential packages that weigh under five pounds are handled: Up to 50 percent of these packages are now going through the United States Postal Service.
It's important to have a shipping system that operates smoothly to expedite shipping timeframes, maintain customer satisfaction and maximize how many packages your shipping team sends out each week. However, as your business grows to process a larger number of packages, you may experience a bottleneck and face difficulties getting shipments out.
Every day, Jim, a small business owner, opens the back door to his stationwagon and places customers' packages inside. He drives them down to the local post office and sends them off around the world.
But lately the station wagon has been stuffed to the brim.
Business has grown every week, and the old station wagon is getting too small to handle all the boxes. Some days he has to even make two trips. He knows he needs a panel truck to handle all the packages, but he isn’t sure when to make the move.
Although you are a much bigger company, in a lot of ways your shipping situation might be like Jim’s. You are shipping more packages every week, possibly 500 to 1,000 per day. You might use the APIs from major carriers to handle the load, but you are adding staff and shipping times are not getting shorter.
But like Jim, you are not sure when to make a step up to the next level, or you may not know what options are available to help you save time and money in shipping costs.
Topics: multichannel shipping
So, you're finally outgrowing your warehouse. That's great—right?
Maybe yes, and maybe no. Running out of room in your warehouse can be a sign of great growth for your business, but it could just as easily be a sign of storage mismanagement.
Before you rent another warehouse or pack up your current inventory to move to a bigger location, you must first determine the reasons why you are running out of space. This will help you make informed decisions about what to do next.