With 2018 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.
With the ever present pressure to cut costs from the supply chain, many retailers are focusing on better inventory management. Gone are the days of bloated inventories and allowing large amounts of capital to be tied up in unsold goods. Retailers have figured out the importance of staying lean as not just a way to lower overall costs, but the best way to keep inventory turning in their store.
Another thinking is, online retailers and other shippers have become much more open to considering alternative carriers and types of shipping solutions which has made them less beholden to any specific provider. Many shippers are willing to rate shop carriers with the attitude that service will always be about the same. In other words, price trumps concerns over service. This is in large part a response to the pressure many feel to offer free or low cost shipping on customer orders.
Last but not least thing is, now that dimensional pricing has been in place for some time, the effect has been digested by the marketplace allowing shippers to better understand and react to its impact. Most have felt it on their bottom line and are figuring out ways to respond. The first thing many are doing is looking for ways to minimize packaging and take every opportunity to trim size and weight as a way to maximize the utilization of space.