Shipping can make or break an ecommerce business. The cost of shipping and speed of delivery are some of the most important factors that your customers will consider when deciding whether or not to buy from you. The problem many ecommerce businesses face is not being able to bring down their inventory carrying costs so that either their customers aren’t buying or they’re harming their margin by eating the cost.
If you have a single San Jose fulfillment center but are frequently shipping to customers on the East Coast or in the South, then you’re probably overpaying for shipping. So how do you bring down costs? With distributed inventory.
ShipBob is an ecommerce fulfillment solution that offers access to multiple fulfillment centers, including one in the Bay Area, to let you store your inventory in different regions (hence the term distributed inventory). So, for example, if half your customers live on the East Coast and half on the West Coast, you could split your inventory between two fulfillment centers on each coast.
This would reduce how far your products must travel to reach your customers by shipping to lower shipping zones. That means more affordable rates and quicker transit times. With lower costs, you can offer 2-day shipping to your customers at a decent margin — and you don’t need a single San Jose fulfillment center to do it.
What ShipBob customers in the Bay Area say
ShipBob works with many customers all over the Bay Area. With a fulfillment center in California, ShipBob serves the West Coast very efficiently, while offering San Jose brands access to fulfillment centers all over the United States. Hear from one ShipBob customer with the founder based in the Bay Area below.
“We now save a lot of money and ship faster based on distributed inventory. So far, we are shipping out of two of ShipBob’s fulfillment centers. We use the locations that optimize and reduce the distance traveled to get our products into our customers’ hands faster. When shipping glass bottles, especially in the winter, the longer the transit time, the more likely it is to break.”
Lindsay Louise, Fulfillment & Retail Manager at Synchro
San Francisco-based ecommerce business Ample Foods transitioned to ShipBob from a competing 3PL and increased their 2-day ground shipping coverage by 103% while saving a lot of money by using ShipBob’s distributed inventory model.
“From expanding into a second ShipBob fulfillment center, we are excited to be able to offer 65% of our customers with 2-day shipping, up from 32% by only having a single West Coast facility. Soon, this will be 100%. Not only is this better for our customers but we also gain a 13% savings to our bottom line.”
Pablo Gabatto, Business Operations Manager at Ample Foods
3PL order fulfillment services in San Jose
ShipBob is a 3PL (third-party logistics) provider that offers full-stack fulfillment services built specifically for ecommerce businesses. Setting up fulfillment with ShipBob involves two simple steps: First, connect your store to our technology. Then, ship your products to our fulfillment centers.
Once you sync your store to ShipBob’s platform, we receive an automatic notification when an order is placed. Our technology forwards the picking list to the fulfillment center closest to the customer for faster, cheaper shipping. Then, our team picks, packs, and ships the order.
ShipBob’s platform comes with a full-suite inventory and order management system built in. Here are some features you get working with ShipBob.
Always have enough product in stock
Running out of stock for a product that was just ordered on your site can result in a late delivery (which means an unhappy customer) or lost sale. ShipBob handles warehousing and provides a wealth of helpful features like letting you calculate safety stock and set reorder points, so you are automatically notified when you need to reorder product and you’ll always be able to track inventory levels.
Monitor order volume
Monitoring order volume is a crucial metric to gauge the health of an ecommerce business. With ShipBob’s order management platform, you can see all orders past and present, track the progress of packages that have been shipped in real-time, and find specific orders quickly.
Track trends and forecast inventory
It’s not enough to keep track of order volume. You also need to know what people are ordering, so you can perform accurate inventory forecasting and understand buying trends. ShipBob generates analytical reports that will inform and improve your business strategy, which will save you many hours on inventory accounting.
Choosing th best 3PL for your San Jose ecommerce fulfillment
ShipBob isn’t your average 3PL. We not only save you the time and hassle of dealing with shipping and logistics; We want to transform your business by expanding your reach and helping you offer faster, cheaper shipping. Here’s what we’ve done for some of the ecommerce merchants that work with us.
Offer cheaper 2-day shipping
The ability to offer customers affordable two-day shipping is a game-changer for many ecommerce businesses. Don’t take our word for it: Men’s grooming company BAKblade partnered with ShipBob and saw a significant spike in conversions after offering 2-Day Express shipping. They went on to grow 291% in the three years after partnering with ShipBob.
Expand your national and global reach
WIth ShipBob’s infrastructure at your disposal, you can start shipping fast and cheap to any location in the US (or even the world). Media company Timbuktu Labs partnered with ShipBob after the Kickstarter launch of their book series, Rebel Girls several years ago. In a matter of two weeks, ShipBob fulfilled 20,000 backer rewards. They’ve since gone on to sell 3.5 million books worldwide across 75 countries.
Give your customers a unique unboxing experience
A memorable unboxing experience can make a huge difference in building your brand. Doris Sleep, a luxury pillow brand, worked with ShipBob to ship their eco-friendly pillows along with a branded sticker in every order. Doris Sleep’s top-notch delivery experience lets them maintain their brand identity, even when the retail fulfillment process is happening outside of their four walls.
Enrich fulfillment with integrations
When you partner with ShipBob, we grow with you. ShipBob easily plugs into other applications and works with other vendors across the ecommerce landscape. You can find partners to improve your store and scale your business in our partner network.
Sync ShipBob with your ecommerce platforms including:
Shipping platforms include:
Is it the right time for your business to outsource order fulfillment to a 3PL?
Any ecommerce business with a decent order volume can benefit from outsourcing fulfillment. 3PLs can accelerate your growth, save you time, and broaden your shipping capabilities. However, some businesses have greater need than others. If you recognize any of the following signs, then hiring a 3PL can truly transform your business:
- You don’t have the warehouse space to properly store and organize your inventory.
- Your pick/pack/ship team is making too many fulfillment errors.
- You spend too much of your budget and resources on shipping and order fulfillment and want lower shipping costs.
- You don’t have the industry knowledge or inclination to scale in-house fulfillment by purchasing land or leasing a warehouse.
- You have a San Jose fulfillment warehouse and cannot offer customers across the country affordable, fast shipping.
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