Online retailers

How to be a Great Ecommerce Order Fulfilment Partner

By Danielle Allen
Ecom Fulfilment Partner Blog

A reliable and expert ecommerce fulfilment partner  helps  retail businesses thrive in a very demanding market. Customer satisfaction is key to being successful in e-commerce and that means meeting the customer demands of quick despatch, accuracy in picking and clear communication of key events .i.e. order despatched, tracking information and delivery. 


To be a great ecommerce order fulfilment partner, you need to be able to meet your client's expectations, when it comes to keeping their customers happy. To help, we’ve put together 5 ways you can ensure you’re a great ecommerce fulfilment partner to your clients. 


5 ways to be a great ecommerce fulfilment partner


1. Set clear expectations from the beginning


With any business relationship, the first step is to ensure your relationship is built on clear expectations and trust. By having open and honest conversations about what each party wants to achieve, you can build a successful partnership. 


You should gain a clear understanding about what your ecommerce client wants and be honest about whether you can deliver that for them. Whether it’s quick fulfilment speeds, custom packaging options, worldwide distribution, or all of the above, you should set service level agreements and costs to ensure both parties are able to deliver what has been agreed upon.


2. Optimise your inventory processes


Your ecommerce clients want to know that you’ll take care of their products and that your inventory processes are designed to ensure their stock gets to the customers as efficiently as possible.


Optimal inventory processes can involve:

  • How to send stock to your warehouses
  • How you process stock from book in to out
  • Stock storage
  • Stock handling
  • Monitoring stock levels 
  • Inventory visibility


Clear communication with your clients on how their inventory will be treated and giving them visibility on what their inventory is doing i.e. where it is in the fulfilment process can help keep your relationship transparent and ensure both parties are fully informed at every stage. 


3. Have efficient warehouse and fulfilment technology


The use of technology and software can be a great asset to your client relationships. Software solutions such as a 3PL management system will allow you to give clients access via a customer portal, where they can set up order integrations from their sales channels – providing you with real-time updates for orders being placed, allow you to update order fulfilment statuses which are visible to your client, and allow you to invoice them directly based on the activity on their account.


By streamlining these crucial communications through the use of software, you’ll save valuable time for both you and your client. 


If you’d like to read more about how technology can help your fulfilment processes and client relationships, please read our article 4 benefits of being a tech-enabled 3PL fulfilment partner.


4. Be flexible and scalable


E-commerce is a fast-paced and ever-changing industry. A product that is popular one day, can quickly go out of ‘style’ and in the same way, a product can quickly go from sitting on the shelf to high-demand, especially if it goes viral via social selling. 


For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, IKEA ‘Pax’ wardrobes quickly became out-of-stock following viral social media posts about creating bespoke walk-in wardrobes using the product. If a giant retailer like IKEA can run out of stock, then so can you, and your e-commerce clients. 


Being flexible, scalable and agile to seasonal increases such as Black Friday and Christmas, or unforeseen order volume changes will not only keep your clients happy, but also their end-customers too. Using reporting and analytics through your 3PL management system can help you plan for the more predictable seasonality, and could also help you spot trends of increasing or decreasing product popularity, to ensure your replenishing stock at the right rates.


5. Utilise your network within ecommerce


Your existing network of trusted partners has a lot to offer to your clients, for example:

  • Your network of carriers can help your clients offer quicker delivery timescales to their customers.
  • Your warehousing partners can help minimise risk for your clients wanting to extend their geographical reach.
  • Your packaging partners could help customise your clients packaging to create a stronger brand image, or help reduce their plastic usage.
  • Your logistics partners could help ship inventory between locations to reduce cost.


Your network can enable your clients to expand both nationally and internationally and achieve their goals, and by supporting their ambitions, you can cement a positive and long-term relationship between you and your clients.


Be a great ecommerce fulfilment partner with Mintsoft


Part of being a great ecommerce fulfilment partner is offering a reliable and expert service to your clients, which can involve the use of software to ensure efficient processes and reliable delivery.


Mintsoft’s 3PL management software can help you to offer your clients the type of fulfilment services they require, with over 150 ready-to-use integrations to sales channels and carriers, client portal access and intuitive workflows and processes that can be tailored to your operations and needs.


If you’d like to find out more, you can read our guide on how much 3PL management software should cost, or book a demo to see how Mintsoft works. 

Danielle Allen
By Danielle Allen Digital Content Manager

Danielle is a content writer at Access Mintsoft with an abundance of experience in the new and emerging technologies sector. Dedicated to providing ecommerce retailers and 3PL’s informative and easy-to-understand content that engages and empowers readers to learn about all things ‘order fulfillment’.