3PL Solutions

Sep 21 2022

3PL Solutions to Optimize Your Business

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You may feel overwhelmed by the available options if you seek a third-party logistics (3PL) provider. 3PL solutions are becoming increasingly popular as businesses look for ways to outsource their logistics.
But what are 3PL solutions? How can you find the right provider?
This article will help you understand 3PL solutions and how to find the best provider for your business.

What are 3PL Solutions?

Third-party logistics (3PL) providers offer various services businesses can use to outsource their operational logistics needs. These services span transportation, warehousing, inventory, order fulfillment, forwarding, and delivery.

Business providers use 3PL solutions to focus on their core competencies while leaving the logistics to a company specializing in it. These solution providers allow businesses to save time and resources while ensuring that their products efficiently reach customers.In the supply chain realm, 3PL providers offer value-added services such as packaging, assembly, and product customization.

3PL Central is one such provider, offering an inventory management system that helps businesses keep track of their products and orders. 3PL Central reviews give insights into the company's services and how they can benefit businesses. Through the warehouse management system (WMS), businesses can automate and streamline their operations, reducing the need for manual data entry. The system is also scalable, so companies can add features as their needs change.

The main difference between third-party logistics 3PL, fourth-party logistics ( 4PL), and fifth-party logistics ( 5PL) providers is the level of service integration and customer involvement.

  • A 3PL provider offers services that businesses can use to outsource their operational logistics needs. These services span transportation, warehousing, inventory, order fulfillment, forwarding, and delivery.
  • A 4PL provider outsources all logistics operations virtually to a 3PL provider. It provides a service by coordinating and integrating all aspects of the supply chain for its clients. It plans, implements, and controls the processes and systems of its clients' supply chains. A 4PL provider can help medical device manufacturers, high-tech companies, and other businesses with complex supply chains.
  • A 5PL provider is a new category of logistics service provider that combines the best features of a 3PL, a broker, and a systems integrator. A broker is an entity that does not take title to goods but arranges transportation services on behalf of its clients. A systems integrator provides technology and systems that allow different organizations to work together and help businesses automate their supply chains.

3PL Warehouse Management System

A Warehouse Management System (WMS) is an efficient software application that helps businesses manage their warehouses. It enables companies to track inventory, optimize space utilization, and improve labor productivity.

A WMS can automate and streamline warehouse operations such as receiving, put-away, order picking, and shipping. It can also help businesses reduce the need for manual data entry and improve accuracy and turbocharge their operations.

3PL Central customers can use the WMS to keep track of their inventory and orders. To solve warehouse issues, 3PL Central support team dedicates to offering our customers the best practices in managing their warehouse.
We understand that each customer's warehouse is different, and our team of experts will work to find the best solution for your business.

A recent blog on Warehouse Management Systems shares the enthusiasm for and insights about supply chains and operational management, offering strategies and news for warehouse management.

A 3PL warehouse manager is responsible for the day-to-day operations of a third-party logistics provider's warehouse. They oversee all aspects of the warehouse, including receiving, storing, and shipping products.
The 3PL warehouse manager also ensures that orders are fulfilled accurately and on time.
3PL Warehouse Manager licenses price from $625 each month, with only a single pricing plan offered for all users.
The price includes Access to 3PL Central's features and support from the 3PL Central team.

3PL Examples

A third-party logistics company provides services to help businesses with their supply chain management.

Some examples of 3PL companies include courier, express and parcel services, transportation management, warehousing and distribution, freight forwarding, order fulfillment, inventory management, and supply chain consulting.

We have compiled a list of the top 10 logistics companies in the United States, according to Finances Online.
They include:
UPS Supply Chain Solutions, DHL, FedEx Fulfillment, Red Stag fulfillment, Fulfillment by Amazon, Ship Bob, Ship Hero, Con-way Freight, Rakuten Super Logistics, and Ship Monk.

However, the top 3PL companies in the USA as of 2022 are UPS Supply Chain Solutions, FedEx, and DHL. These companies are known for their efficient service and ability to reduce shipping costs.
When considering whether or not to use a 3PL company, it is essential to weigh the advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages and Disadvantages of 3PL

Some of the benefits of 3PL include:

  • Increased efficiency: 3PL companies can help you streamline your supply chain and increase efficiency.
  • Cost savings: 3PL companies can help you save money on transportation, warehousing, and other logistics services.
  • Improved customer satisfaction: 3PL companies can help you improve customer satisfaction by ensuring that orders are fulfilled accurately and on time.

Some of the disadvantages of 3PL include:

  • Loss of control: Using a 3PL company may lead to losing control over your supply chain.
  • Service issues: If the 3PL company you use has service issues, it can impact your business.
  • Contractual obligations: When you use a 3PL company, you may be required to sign a contract that obligates you to use their services.

3PL Fulfillment

Ecommerce businesses use 3PL Fulfillment centers to store and ship their products because it is more cost-effective than doing it themselves. 3PL Fulfillment centers are located strategically worldwide, near major transportation hubs.

For example, the US has around 3,000 3PL Fulfillment centers in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta, and other major cities.

Some of the top 3PL Fulfillment companies in the US include Red Stag Fulfillment, Ship Bob, and Rakuten Super Logistics. These companies offer competitive pricing and have a good reputation for fulfilling orders.

The cost of using a 3PL Fulfillment center is typically lower than the cost of shipping from your warehouse.

It is essential to choose a 3PL Fulfillment company with experience with your product type that can provide the services you need at a reasonable price.

The Shopify Fulfilment Network is a 3PL service offered by Shopify available to Shopify merchants in the US, Canada, and Australia.

The Shopify Fulfilment Network offers competitive pricing and features designed to help businesses save time and money on their shipping.

Some of the features of the Shopify Fulfilment Network include:

  • Order tracking.
  • Shipping labels: You can print shipping labels directly from Shopify.
  • Customer support: You can contact Shopify's customer support team if you have any questions or issues.

3PL Central

If you are looking for a 3PL company, 3PL Central is a good option. 3PL Central offers a cloud-based software solution that gives you visibility and control over your supply chain.

The 3PL Central software is designed to help businesses save time and money on logistics operations.

3PL Central Customer support team is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to aid you with any issues.

3PL Central offers a free trial of their software through mobile login, so you can try it before you commit to using it.

3PL Central Pricing

Pricing for 3PL Central starts at $99 per month for the Basic plan, which includes five users and one warehouse.

The Plus plan, which includes ten users and two warehouses, costs $199 per month.

The Professional plan, which includes fifteen users and three warehouses, costs $299 per month.

The Enterprise plan, which includes twenty users and four warehouses, costs $399 per month.

With the ever-growing popularity of e-commerce, the demand for 3PL services is also rising quickly, averaging an annual revenue of $200 million or more. 3PL providers are constantly adapting to the changing logistics landscape to provide their customers with the best possible service, with salaries of around $70k per year.

3PL Near Me

If you are looking for a 3PL provider near you, there are a few things to consider:

  • First is whether the 3PL provider has experience with your product type.
  • Second is the cost of using their services.
  • The third is whether they can provide the services you need.

When considering these factors, it is also essential to read Central reviews of the 3PL provider you are considering.

These reviews help you better understand what others have experienced using their services.

Once you have considered these factors, you can use the 3PL Near Me finder to find providers in your area. Enter your zip code and product type, and the finder will show you a list of providers near you.

DHL is a well-known international company based in California providing world market services by sea and air mail.

With over 280 warehouses in the US alone, DHL service providers work daily to help you cross borders, reach new marketplaces, and grow your business.

Ascent Global Logistics is a Texas-based company that provides transportation and logistics solutions for businesses of all sizes. They offer various services, including warehousing, trucking, and freight forwarding. Ascent Global Logistics has over 30 locations across the US and employs more than 500 people.

What is 3PL in the supply chain?

A 3PL provider is a firm providing services to its customers related to the transportation and warehousing of goods. 3PLs are usually part of a larger supply chain.

An example of 3PL logistics would be a company like Amazon Fulfillment, which manages the storage and shipping of products for other companies.

Role of 3PL in supply chain management

The Primary role of 3PL in supply chain management is to outsource logistics functions to a third party. These services can include transportation, warehousing, and distribution.

For instance, a company may use a Transportation management system (TMS) provided by a third-party logistics provider to plan and execute the movement of goods.

Pros and Cons of using a 3PL provider

There are several pros and cons to using a third-party logistics provider. Some advantages include:

· Access to expertise and resources that the company may not have internally

· Increased flexibility to respond to changes in demand

· Reduced costs associated with logistics operations

Some disadvantages include:

· Loss of control over the logistics process

· Difficulty integrating the third-party logistics provider into existing systems

· Dependence on the third-party logistics provider for critical services.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know what a third-party logistics provider is and what they do, you can decide if a 3PL provider is a fitting addition to your business.