Keeping USA Order Fulfillment Costs Predictable (Part 2)

Part 2: Choosing the Right Logistics Partners
By: Elliott Smith
This is part two in a multi part series on Keeping USA Order Fulfillment Costs Predictable. Click here to read Part 1: Dimensional Shipping, Residential Charges and Zones.  In Part Two, Trade Tips Blog continues the conversation with UCanTrade’s Operations Manager Terry Dickey on controlling the costs of order fulfillment in the United States. In this installment, we focus on the importance of choosing the right logistics partners.
It’s important to choose the right partners to keep your USA fulfillment costs predictable. One of the fastest ways for costs to escalate is a misplaced or mishandled shipment. If your customer doesn’t receive the item they ordered when promised, you could be on the hook for a refund, a replacement, or other expensive measures to keep your customer happy. It’s better to choose logistics options that provide certainty and accurate data, so that if there is a problem, you can identify the source quickly and remedy the issue.
The Postal Service vs. UPS/FedEx
For this reason UPS and FedEx are often better alternatives to the US Postal Service for business shipments. “It’s the tracking” Dickey explains. With US Postal Service Priority Mail, you get a notification that your shipment has been picked up, and a notification that it has been delivered. But in transit? Nope. The Postal Service is unable to provide data about a package in transit; data that could help you track where something might have gone wrong and solve a problem.
UPS and FedEx both provide significantly more data. Shipments are scanned at every location where they are handled in transit. If something goes wrong with a shipment, it’s far easier to identify what went wrong, and where the item is. Having that information means that should a problem arise, you can fix it faster and easier, saving you money.
UPS vs. FedEx
Another thing to consider when choosing your logistics partner is who you are really hiring. UPS is one central organization, every truck driver, pilot and package handler in the brown uniform is a UPS employee. FedEx, on the other hand, uses contractors to handle significant portions of their operation, including residential ground delivery. In some cases, these contractors are top-notch professionals. In other cases, not so much. The problem is, if you are sending a package across the country, you don’t know whether the contractor handling final delivery to your customer’s house is one of the best, or one of the worst. Choosing UPS, especially for residential delivery, can provide more consistent results.
UCanTrade’s Industry-Leading Low Fulfillment Error Rate
Hiring the right fulfillment house is another critical step in keeping your fulfillment costs predictable. Shipping errors can become costly customer service debacles in a hurry, so it’s important to find a trusted fulfillment partner that can get your orders shipped correctly, with the absolute minimum error rate. In the fulfillment industry, a 1-2% error rate is considered standard. With many fulfillment providers, one or two packages per hundred shipped are incorrectly processed. UCanTrade, Inc. has one of the lowest fulfillment error rates in the industry. In 2014, the company’s error rate was amazingly low and well below industry standard with an accuracy rate of 99.82%! You can rest assured that when you choose UCanTrade to handle your USA order fulfillment, you are working with the industry leader in fulfillment accuracy.
TradeTips blog is published by UCanTrade, Inc., your cross-border experts since 1997.
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