Will Automated Warehousing Replace Order Fulfillment Company?

With the advancement of modern automation, automatic warehousing equipment has gradually entered people’s attention, especially e-commerce warehouses. It can be said that the rise of modern e-commerce warehousing outsourcing services must be inseparable from the assistance of warehousing automation equipment. However, in the modern era of rapid scientific and technological progress, automated warehousing will be an inevitable choice in the future. So is it necessary to find a third-party logistics services? Will e-commerce order fulfillment warehouse be replaced?

On the one hand, with the widespread popularity of automated storage and equipment, the price cost is still unaffordable to many e-commerce sellers. Especially for small and medium-sized sellers, under the premise of small shipments, spending a lot of money to buy automated storage will only increase unwarranted consumption. In fact, the better choice is the e-commerce warehousing outsourcing service. Under the urging of the times, the third-party warehouse must be equipped with various types of automatic equipment, which will be better than self-built automated warehousing. Higher delivery efficiency and  more favorable price can help small and medium-sized companies better meet the challenges of the wave of automation.

On the other hand, most e-commerce sellers will adopt the principle of proximity when building their own warehouses, that is to say, the want to set up warehouses in areas close to their own companies to facilitate supervision. Then this will inevitably lead to the problem of low timeliness of delivery. But the third-party e-commerce warehouses are all located near the express distribution center, which has a considerable advantage in terms of timeliness of delivery. With the ultra-high accuracy of automated warehousing, it can greatly improve the timeliness of logistics and the accuracy of delivery.

Customer Retention: Repeat Purchase Campaign

Want to strat a business, and gather those share the same idea with you?

Not all customers are alike. Even if all of them have one thing in common—the fact they bought from you—that doesn’t mean you should treat them the same way. If you treat all your customers the same way, you’re likely to send them irrelevant emails, making them less interested in becoming loyal customers.

Tell your repeat purchasers, which are your caring listener, your stories about the founding of the business, or the coupon for them to continue the buying from you.

How do you extract more out of an existing customer? According to Adobe’s recent study, existing customers are responsible for creating 40% of revenue for an ECommerce store. Acquiring a new customer will be 5 times more expensive than getting a conversion from an existing one. However, increasing customer retention rate in the e-commerce industry by 5% can increase your profitability from 25% to 95%!

Your existing customers are familiar with your brand and your product, which makes them theoretically easier to convert compared to acquiring a new customer. Based on certain triggers derived from user behavior, you can create tailored campaigns with an incentive that will drive up the perceived value of the offer.

Unless the geography or demographics of your customers affect your e-commerce sales, one of the best ways to segment your customer list is by using engagement and transactional attributes based on their past behavior.

3 Signals on Cross-border E-commerce Seen from the CIIE

On November 5, the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) opened in Shanghai. According to the data, more than 3000 enterprises from more than 150 countries and regions participated in the exhibition, and the number of participating countries and enterprises exceeded the first one. Meanwhile, T-Mall Global, Jingdong Global, VipShop International, Koala Haigou, Suning Global Outsourcing, Beibei, Yunji, Meidun Mom and other cross-border importer and e-commerce platforms have appeared in the Expo.

According to the monitoring of e-commerce large database, in 2018, the transaction scale of import cross-border e-commerce industry reached 1900 billion yuan (including B2B, B2C, C2C and o2o modes), an increases of 26.66% year on year. Since 2001, the transaction scale of import cross-border e-commerce industry has maintained continuous growth.

Release positive signals for cross-border e-commerce

The second China international cross-border e-commerce development summit, and the Cross-border E-commerce promotion trade development summit will be held during the Expo. Cross-border e-commerce has become a powerful growth point for the development of China’s foreign trade. With the introduction of the e-commerce law and new policies on cross-border e-commerce, the gradually expanded scope of application of import policies, and the continuous increase of domestic demand, cross-border e-commerce will usher in a new round of quality improvement and upgrading.

Editor of Chinadivision found, at least 3 signals can be seen from the summits.

Signal 1: many international brands take Chinese cross-border e-commerce enterprises as a bridge to enter China, strengthen international resource cooperation, and give play to the advantages of local industrial clusters.

Signal 2: domestic cross-border e-commerce platforms seek new opportunities for cooperation, promote transnational cooperation and bring more trade opportunities.

Signal 3: accelerate the development of cross-border import market to meet diversified consumer demand.

Good Advise for e-Commerce Importers

1: Be organized.
This doesn’t just pertain to paperwork, but all of your importing issues. It is important that you schedule deliveries with enough time to be able to not only receive your inventory, but also get it out of the way for the next delivery. Truckers will typically give you 2 hours or even less to unload, but then you must pay for the additional hours. If you organize deliveries from the port properly, then you won’t have truckers charging you time for them to wait.

2: Dimension and weight accuracy.
Be very accurate on your dimensions and weight when importing products, especially if you ship LCL (Less than Container Load). International Freight Forwarders plan their loading of the containers based on these numbers. If you misquote, or “guesstimate”, you are likely to throw off the numbers for the carrier, causing them undue strain. As most things are floor loaded (meaning no pallets) when shipped overseas, every measurable square inch is used. If your numbers are incorrect by more than a percentage or two, you could find your shipment delayed until the forwarder decides to ship another container that will accommodate your shipment.

3: Incorporate all costs when comparing prices.
If you have three people working to make sure shipments are coming in, and you are comparing the rates of companies who provide shipping against those who provide shipping and logistical services, analyze if outsourcing will alleviate your in-house costs, ultimately increasing productivity. While the provider of both services may have a higher quote than the others, ask yourself if the value added is going to help your business with importing products in the long run.

4: Check the availability of your freight service providers.
Are you able to get in touch with your freight forwarder when things go wrong? Will your freight forwarder contact you before you find out from your client? How does your freight forwarder stay in touch with the truckers to find out current situations? These are questions to ask prior to signing on with any freight forwarder. You don’t want to have to hunt them down if a shipment is delayed. The same goes for customs brokers. Most will contact you straight away if the proper documents are not filed, but did they divulge all the necessary documents that you will need?

5: Make sure to be very clear about your product.
Origin, material and destination are important pieces of information when it comes to clearing customs. When deciding on the proper service provider(s), make sure they understand everything about your product, any tests that have been conducted to appease other government entities (FDA, CPSC, EPA, etc) and all documentation that will be required. If you have been vague about importing products that require specific knowledge, you are likely to encounter unexpected fees from your broker/freight forwarder.

6: Obtain a “Customs ruling”
If you have a new product that you sourced in another country, and you are unsure which tariff it falls under, you can typically send it to a customs broker who will get you a ruling number. Then, each time you file, you can use that same ruling number for that specific product.

7: Know the product you are importing.
Know how the country you’re shipping to classifies your product. For example, a bed for dogs can be considered a pet accessory in one country and a bed in another. Different countries have different rules and fees, so find out what they are before you begin importing products.

8: Speak to a customs attorney.
If you are new to importing products, you can avoid a lot of hassles by speaking to a customs attorney prior to starting your importing business. Make sure what you have sourced is from a reputable manufacturer and find out all necessary implications of your product. Also, check to make sure if it is subject to the various consumer entities. Getting everything in order will help the process go that much smoother.