We could spend time telling you how important your 3PL partner is to your reputation and customer service levels but, if you are in the eCommerce space, I think we can safely assume you already know. So rather than go back over the obvious, we’ve decided to take a look into our world to see why a great 3PL partner is really going to matter in 2022.
What is happening in the 3PL logistics world?
As I am sure you have noticed, the logistics and delivery industry is going through interesting times right now. A perfect storm has blown up from Brexit, the continuing covid issue, overall low unemployment, and several other factors that have created an unstable and challenging world for 3PL providers and transport logistics in general.
At the same time, the fulfilment market is booming. You can see huge, new warehouse facilities everywhere, and the motorways and railways are buzzing with freight as eCommerce growth continues. The 3PL market in the UK is expected to be worth at least 16 billion in the coming year, and it will continue to grow exponentially for the foreseeable future.
Of course, a booming market is very nice, but with the cost of hiring staff increasing and general overheads increasing, growth is not without challenge. Here at Synergy, we are also investing in new and innovative ways to do our bit (which we will gladly do) towards reaching our environmental targets.
So, why am I telling you all this? Why should you be interested in all this background information?
Aren’t these our problems and not yours?
Yes, absolutely, and that is our point. With a trusted 3PL partner by your side, you shouldn’t need to be worrying about these issues. We will do that for you. While no 3PL company can promise that global and local economic conditions will not affect you at all, they can choose how to deal with them. It’s a simple choice. You can pass on these problems to the customer or see it as your role to protect your clients from them. We choose the second option. That means our solutions are about minimum disruption to your service, not our own needs as our core priority.
Signs you need a new 3PL partner
The reality is that in 2022 you will need more than a 3PL supplier. You will need a 3PL partner that knows how to handle the continuing logistics issues, shortages, and other problems and protect your service from being affected by them. If you are experiencing any of the following, they could be signs that your current 3PL company is experiencing some very understandable issues impacting your relationship with them.
- Your shipping errors are starting to increase. According to a recent survey by GlobalWebIndex taken over 17 markets, more than half of respondents held reliable delivery as their top online shopping feature. That speaks volumes about the need for reliability. If your current 3PL partner has problems now, they will continue to as the market grows.
- Returns and cancellations are causing stock headaches. Without having a fully trackable and reliable system in place, your stock becomes inaccurate. Once this happens, you end up losing money from your bottom line, either in lost sales or in the cost of administering the problem.
- They are not using real-time reporting and are not investing in development. We already have and will continue to invest in improving the use of customer-focused technology in our processes. If you cannot access real-time stock and other relevant information, you could be losing to competitors who can.
- Sudden reductions in customer support because of overload. Everyone is busy, but that isn’t always a good thing. It can very quickly lead to a decrease in customer service. That leaves you without answers for your customers, and in turn, damages your brand reputation.
If you see any of these issues, are starting to feel uncomfortable with your 3PL partner or simply want to talk through your needs, we are here to help. Contact us today to discuss how we can help make 2022 as stable as possible for you and your deliveries as smooth as possible for your customers.