Is Amazon Logistics good for consumers, bringing the delivery industry into the 21st century? Or is it taking workers’ rights back to the 19th?
In September 2018, Amazon announced that it was buying 20,000 brand new Mercedes-Benz Sprinter vans to help expand its Amazon Logistics division in the U.S. That doesn’t come cheap, and it’s a lot of wheels – and people – to take care of.
How many new employees, sorting facilities and garages will Amazon need for those 20,000 vans? Actually, they won’t need any at all. Instead, Amazon is encouraging people to start their own independent delivery companies, lease the vans from them, and deliver their packages for them.
Amazon Logistics isn’t structured like a traditional carrier, and it doesn’t perform like one either. It delivers seven days a week, and orders can be with the buyer the same day that they were placed. Often, packages are left outside homes, and no signature is taken as proof of delivery. That’s a lot of industry norms being broken.
So, what’s the verdict on Amazon Logistics? Does it offer a better, more modern and innovative service? Or is it a cheap, unreliable and exploitative pretender? Should vendors and FBA sellers even care how their products get to consumers, or does that only affect Amazon’s own reputation?
We spoke with Connor Gillivan about how he built up his dropshipping business and whether the same approach still works on Amazon today
Many sellers see dropshipping as the perfect ecommerce business model and it’s not hard to see why. You don’t have to purchase stock in advance, have a warehouse or even ship orders. In theory, all you have to do is find products, list them for sale and send the orders to your suppliers. Sounds like the ideal business, right?
Well, in reality, it’s a lot tougher to build a successful business using dropshipping than sellers think. The process might seem simple, but there’s a lot of challenges. Unless you’re highly efficient it can be very easy to make mistakes.
To find out what it takes to build a successful dropshipping business we spoke to Connor Gillivan, who has sold over $25 million of products using dropshipping. Connor has been running ecommerce businesses since 2009 and is also the co-founder of ecommerce outsourcing company FreeeUp.
We talked about the reality of dropshipping, the methods that Connor used to build his business and whether using the same approach could still be successful on Amazon today.
From in-house fulfillment and Amazon FBA, to dropshipping and 3PLs, we evaluate each model to help you pick the right one for your business
Imagine the scenario: you’re a multi-channel ecommerce seller, surrounded by stock, wondering how you’re going to get orders out. You sell a whole range of SKUs, that vary in size and sales volume, and aren’t sure whether fulfilling all your orders yourself will be possible.
While self-fulfilling orders does have merit, it’s not the only way to do ecommerce fulfillment. There are several other strategies, each with their own pros and cons, that are worth exploring.
So, in this post, I’ll look at the different ecommerce fulfillment strategies that are open to sellers, from in-house fulfillment and Amazon FBA to dropshipping and using independent 3PLs. I’ll explain how each model works, the pros and cons of fulfilling orders using each approach, and the types of businesses which are best suited to each model.
Jake Rheude asks if emerging markets will leap ahead of the developed world, and be the first to implement drone-base distribution networks
This post is by Jake Rheude, the Director of Business Development and Marketing for ecommerce fulfillment company Red Stag Fulfillment (RSF). When the owners of e-retail businesses could not find a high-quality fulfillment partner, the decision was made to build their own, and the result was Red Stag Fulfillment. This post was originally published on the RSF blog as The Future of Distribution Part II.
This is Part II of a series dealing with the Future of Distribution. Part I detailed the history of distribution and how the manufacturing, wholesale and retail segments developed, only to be supplanted with the integrated approach pioneered by online sales companies such as Amazon. Part II applies the same analysis and forecasting to emerging markets.
Software and services for efficient order processing, economical shipping, warehouse management, and third-party logistics
A successful ecommerce business has a lot to do: research the market, source products, list onto marketplaces and so on – all before getting a single customer order.
When the orders do start coming in, you get the satisfying buzz of making a sale and all that effort finally seems worthwhile. You just have to send the orders out the door. Should be simple, right? Print off the details, pick the items, pack the boxes, add packing slips, stick on shipping labels, arrange for a pick-up (or drop them off)… and now it doesn’t seem so simple after all.
Many sellers quickly go from waiting for their next sale with a feeling of excitement, to waiting with a feeling of fear. Will they have enough stock? Will they apply the right labels to the right boxes? Will they even be able to ship on time?
So that’s the bad news: shipping is a messy, complex, demanding process. It can be a huge challenge, and has been the downfall of many sellers. The good news? It’s a challenge that businesses have faced before, and there are plenty of solutions out there for making it easier, faster, cheaper and more accurate.
In this post I’ll walk you through the Shipping & Fulfillment category of the Web Retailer directory. It covers order management, shipping automation, fulfillment outsourcing (third-party logistics), shipping consolidators, dropship automation and warehouse management.