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These 5 Tips Help You Find the Best 3PL Provider for Your Fulfillment Network

Effective fulfillment service is an ideal solution for all types of businesses you can’t live without. Outsourcing ecommerce warehousing to 3PL (third party logistics provider) comes with many benefits that make your tasks quicker, cheaper and more efficient.

It’s important to evaluate fulfillment services in what they offer and what your business needs. You need to hire a 3PL provider that does all the necessary operational tasks like maintaining equipment, keeping track of pallets and much more.

Finding a perfect 3PL Provider that meet all your business solutions is a lot harder.
A research study from the State of Logistics Outsourcing study shows that:

  • 3PLs have a 23% average fixed logistics cost reduction
  • Shippers report an average logistics cost reduction of 11%
  • 3PLs have a 6% average inventory cost reduction
  • Shippers and 3PLs are about equally satisfied (70% and 69%, respectively).

There are many considerations to draw from the above data. Like, how does a 3PL manage reduction costs to make their operations more cheap and efficient? The reality lies in the utilization of storage, provision of cheap transport and effective handling of needs/solutions on behalf of their client businesses.

Each company has different business fulfillment needs. 3PL companies use sophisticated warehousing management software to manage, plan and distribute products depending on their client company needs. And in such, committing to a 3PL isn’t something to take lightly. Most contracts taken by 3PL warehousing are performed on a long-term basis and it has to fit well with your business growth plans, operations as well as your customer service relations.

So what are you looking for in a 3PL warehouse company?

We’re going to discuss the most important factors to consider before engaging business with them. Be sure to look for a third-party logistics that’s both a solution provider and an advisor that you can trust by understanding all of your present and future fulfillment needs. These needs can be hard to make if you’re new to the industry. That’s why we’ve come up with short but helpful considerations you must take into considerations before engaging business with any 3PL warehouse company.

1: 3PL’s Level of Technological Sophistication.

Every business strives to keep pace with the rapid advancement occurring in the technology industry.
A lot of processes occurs in the warehousing management software systems as it tries to share information across its customers. A lot of net revenue percentage goes to the investment in technology like developing and implementing new applications for all technical and customer solutions.
With that said, you should make sure to check if the level of the 3PL’s system is able to integrate with your own business automation needs including CRM requirements.

2: Financial Strength of the 3PL

Most 3PL engagements are long-term and you don’t want to devour your business success with 3PL financial instability. 3PL companies are capital-intensive businesses. They should have adequate financial resources to invest in their clients.

When measuring the strength of the 3PL financial stability, look at the following questions and find the solutions from the third-party logistics that satisfy your business needs.

  • Is the 3PL you choose able to provide the services you need as a client?
  • Are they able to take advantage of the powerful innovations that have the ability to both protect and advanced your business?
  • Are they able to cope with any economical or natural disruptions?
  • Are they willing to provide you with their profit and loss data for the past few years to help you analyze any trends that will help you draw decisions based on your business needs?
  • Are they able to show ongoing cost and process improvements? There are many other considerations to check financially before engaging any business with them.
3: 3PL’s Talent (Their Knowledge and Expertise)

There are many challenges facing both 3PLs and their clients especially in supply chain and logistics competence. As a client looking to establish a successful business, you’ll need to consider the overall breadth and depth of experience with the 3PL company and its staff. Look for both the positive and negative side of the 3PL you choose as all these talents have a significant impact on your business progression.

4: 3PL Flexibility and Scalability

Can the 3PL you choose incline their base with your business growth? There are many considerations the 3PL must be able to meet the requirements your business needs to help foster a continuous growth of your business, especially new markets.

Your 3PL choice should be able to manage stock rotation parameters effectively as well as other warehouse metrics that matter most to your needs.

5: Advanced Business Intelligence and Solutions

This is mostly based on the level of IT solutions including networking and knowledge- exchange opportunities. Serious third-party logistics providers should conduct market research and share its findings and insights with their clients. Also, they should be able to cope with any business challenges and provide a robust solution to their clients.

There are other factors you should put into considerations when selecting the best 3PL provider that match your business needs and goals. Before engaging any relations with a 3PL provider, be sure to vet consistently the company’s way of work (management), IT, customer relation and financial preparedness among other factors.

Maximize Online Sales through Well-Planned Diversification

Maximize Online SalesIt is just a simple truth that Amazon ranks as the top online marketplace. If you doubt it, just consider this – Amazon has quickly become the main place consumers go in order to shop online. In fact, many reports show that Amazon is even beating out Google in terms of product searches! Because of its popularity and growing share of product searches, it’s hard to argue with merchants for flocking to the online channel to sell their goods.

Pretty hard, indeed, and yet there are many firms that are eager to shift their business model away from an Amazon-centric model. Why? There are actually many reasons for it, and yet there is also a single, universal truth often overlooked when discussing the pros and cons of reliance on Amazon. What is that universal truth? That failure to diversify is a poor model for sales of any kind. It is the opposite of “hedging your bets”, and in this article, we are going to look at ways of maximizing your sales on multiple sales channels, rather than strictly through Amazon.

Why Not Just Stick to Amazon?

With its immense access to consumers, its ease of use for you and your buyers and its phenomenal infrastructure, it makes sense to use Amazon. Yet, there are several serious “cons” to this narrow avenue for sales. Let’s consider the most substantial:

  • Absence of buyer demographics – The metrics that can help you create an optimal marketing and sales model are unavailable when you use the Amazon system. Tracking, metrics, and invaluable insight are severely limited, preventing you from making the most out of any sale.
  • Amazon owns buyer demographics – Of course, a major reason to rely only mildly on Amazon is that they retain the contact information on each of your sales. This means they position themselves to become your competition if they can source the product less expensively and use their massive distribution network to undercut on shipping, too.
  • Competition is intense – It is not only Amazon that forms the competition, and instead of building a brand, telling your story and solving a need, it comes down to the lowest price. It can also come down to selling a specific brand over another.
  • High fees – No matter how you approach it, experts warn that keeping on top of your Amazon selling fees is the starting point to running a successful business on Amazon. After all, there are often per item fees, referral fees (usually 15% of the sale price or $1-$2 per item), closing fees and even selling plan fees. This can add up and leave you non-competitive. Not only are the commissions high, but if you use Amazon FBA you’ll be paying more than if you use most fulfillment companies, according to’s analysis of fulfillment pricing.

These are but a few of the downsides to leaning too heavily on Amazon, and yet there is one final downside that we’ve already touched on – the absence of diversification. In fact, some warn that many sellers end up experiencing dependency upon Amazon. In doing so, they might enjoy ongoing sales, but this prevents long-term brand development as well as allowing most other e-commerce activities or online efforts fall to the proverbial wayside. The best way to build your own brand is to diversify, or at least diversify your business from your activities on Amazon.

Maximize Online Sales  with a Model for Basic Business Diversification

Though you may have started your online sales career through Amazon, you must strive to create a brand of your own, that enables you to control client data. This can only occur when you take the first, essential step towards diversification, which is to build the foundation of an online profile using an independent website.

  1. Create a website – You can have an Amazon sales page that includes feedback, policies and product listings, but it is nothing like a free-standing website. With this you can track user data, refine your marketing, harvest email information, link to blogs and social channels, link to other marketplaces, and learn all you need in order to succeed at SEO and sales. Without this foundational piece, you are just at the mercy of the Amazon marketplace.
  2. Social channels – Marketing via Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and even Etsy (which is also a marketplace of its own), is a simple and affordable way to direct traffic to your site. If, from your site, you want to steer visitors towards Amazon, or other channels, that’s fine, but this lets you control the direction of the traffic. Often it allows you to steer visitors to landing pages or list building pages.
  3. Other Marketplaces – You should not limit yourself to Amazon alone. Global audiences, or at least quite massive audiences, exist on eBay, Walmart and, among others. Do the same storefront activities there, with pricing designed to compete with those in the same marketplaces. This lets you adjust pricing, get your brand or name out there, but steers you away from Amazon dependency.
  4. Partnerships – No matter what you sell, it is likely that there are firms with products that complement or partner nicely with yours. Forming partnerships with them can help diversify and extend your reach. This can be everything from vlogs with product placements, blogs and articles that offer links back to your site, sales pages you create together and which packages your offers or promotes them equally, and more.

While it is oh-so-easy to get started in sales on a site like Amazon, and make money, why bog yourself down into this single, narrow channel that will only have diminishing profits over time? Diversification is affordable and easy using the steps outlined above. It is the only real path to growth and one you can get started on right away.

Providing Subscription Box Fulfillment Services

subscription box fulfillmentSubscription Box Fulfillment is a growing business with repetitive monthly shipments to consumers all around the world. Lincoln Warehousing is here to understand your business and needs.


Lincoln Warehousing processes a variation of subscription fulfillments including:

  • One Box Subscription Fulfillment: Sending out one box type to your customers
  • Multi Box Subscription Fulfillment: Sending out a variation of box types to your customers
  • Pick and Pack Subscription Fulfillment: Sending out a customized box to your customers

Our warehouse is regulated with high quality control.  Our team uses automated tracking systems that report the process from beginning to end and provides tracking information, sent to your customer.

Learn more about Subscription Box Fulfillment services or Contact us for a quote. 

Ecommerce Fulfillment Services

ecommerce fulfillment servicesEcommerce is a continuous growing channel of distribution and shipping for sales on the internet with demands that are 24/7, making it critical that you select a fulfillment company that is reliable.  Lincoln Warehousing offers ecommerce fulfillment services that are responsive to customer expectations, paying particular attention to speed and accuracy.

At Lincoln Warehousing, we help to optimize your shipping postage savings, making our Ecommerce Fulfillment services efficient for your shipping needs.  Our systems and personal integrate with your order takers and websites to ensure that we are accurately capturing your orders.

Learn more about our Ecommerce Fulfillment Services.