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A Deeper Understanding of 3PL Warehouses and FBA

A Deeper Understanding of 3PL Warehouses and FBA


Many are now jumping into eCommerce business bandwagon. Online stores are opening here and there. But what’s ironic is, despite having tons of people getting into eCommerce, just a handful of them really know how to navigate and operate their online business. What’s funny is they are uninitiated with jargons that are used in this sector. Among these are 3PL warehouses.
As you engage yourself into online business, you will be taking, accepting and fulfilling orders online. For amateurs, this may make them scratch head for few seconds on how to streamline the process or if there’s a system that can be use to have a smooth sail of everything. This is where third party logistics companies will come into place. So what specifically does a third party logistic company do and what exactly is third party logistics definition?

Do You Know What You’re Getting Yourself Into?


With the massive advancement in internet technology, faster internet connectivity and more ways to connect online, it is not surprising why more and more people and established businesses are tapping to eCommerce.

Third Party Logistics or simply 3PL are basically a logistics provider that is offering outsourced logistics services to their client companies either for a part or all their supply chain management. It’s easy to get lost with countless of 3PL warehouses and companies to choose from nowadays. Fortunately, there are companies that you can partner on which can point you to optimal 3PL company for your business that you can rely on processing and fulfilling your orders. Few of these companies businesses are AiHello where they can point you to the best 3PL warehouses for your merchandises.

Engaging Partnership

As much as possible, make sure to take partnership with dedicated and committed companies that can point you to ones that can efficiently the role of a third party logistics company. With this, you can put more emphasis on manufacturing, promotions, advertising and selling products. Like the example partner above, it can help in eliminating worries of both logistics and warehousing while you on the other hand focus on expanding your business. 

Third Party Logistics Advantages


Logistics are our area of concern. We’ve been doing this day in and day out. Even if you, personally have the resources to handle the logistics on your own, we can provide unparalleled support and assistance in supply chain partnered with smart positioning within supply chain itself.

Sales Forecast - Forecast by location, warehouse and aggregate 

Inventory Management - Analyze & Forecast Inventories to Never Run Out of Stock Again

Automated Email Campaigns - 100% 'One Touch Setup' Email Automation

Analyze Products - View sales velocity, returns velocity, best selling skus & much more

Sync Multi-Market - Access The Whole Online Retailers Ecosystem by Using Amazon, Ebay, Alibaba, Shopify And Many More

Location Analytics - Know what sells where and how much

Hitting the Trifecta!

For anyone who is in the eCommerce business, being able to hit fulfillment, logistics breakdowns and shipping are the ultimate goal for a smooth operation and successful business. But it’s easier said than done. Believe it or not, this trifecta could be crippling to the part of the business. To make sure that your business won’t suffer from it, following are the primary factors to be mindful about when selecting 3PL warehouses.

Assuming that you have correctly chosen third party logistics companies, you can reap one of the main benefits of 3PL services; it’s saving time through its automation fulfillment. Rather than worrying and hiring staffs to take care on product shipment, you will have a partner whose main focus is to making sure that your merchandises and goods ends up to your customer’s doorsteps.

Finding the Right Service Provider That Fulfills the Role of a Third Party Logistics Company

Enough with the side notes, more on the real deal.

  1.       Work with industry experts – the primary focus of any reputable 3PL warehouses is optimizing how the company is handling shipments. They have authority with regards to warehousing, fulfillment and shipping.
  2.       Managing internationalization – one of the major roadblocks of hitting the international market is working on global fulfillment. Handful of people worldwide have time to deal with customs, documentation, duties and several other issues related to overseas sales. Through outsourcing, it’s offsetting that responsibility. It’s because your chosen logistic partner can’t just make selling across other countries simpler but also, they can expedite delivery time while lowering shipping costs.
  3.      Limiting overhead – among the most difficult aspects of setting up warehouse of your own all lies in overhead. The overhead to lease the space and finding a team who can efficiently work on order fulfillments. It’s hard to keep up with these costs especially if you’re just a startup. By working with a professional 3PL warehouse, it can lower your costs while scaling fulfillment processes.
      The FBA


      When you are into eCommerce business, you aren’t limited to 3PL warehouses to help grow and expand your business. Literally, there are many options that can help you to climb your way up to success. And among these options is the FBA or otherwise known as Fulfillment by Amazon.

      Despite the fact that Amazon is a global online marketplace, not many are accustomed to FBA. Thus, leading them to ask the question, what is Amazon FBA? As a matter of fact, the FBA business model is booming and it keeps on generating interests among individuals by hundreds or thousands per day.
       
       Essentially, FBA is almost the same as conventional eCommerce businesses today. But in FBA, it isn’t you who has to fulfill the orders. What happens here is, Amazon will be storing products on your behalf and even select, package and ship it out to your customer’s address. In other words, FBA meaning is, you can build brand faster and easier without stressing yourself of the warehouse logistics, courier, packaging materials and so forth. Using Amazon’s private labeling at the same time, it opens up new avenues in building your brand as well as website. Thereby, it automatically increases your business worth and value.

   Fulfillment by Amazon: Explained  

      With fulfillment by Amazon business model, it opens up new doors in leveraging the robust customer base and distribution network that Amazon has established. As what mentioned, Amazon is going to warehouse products, complete order fulfillment and provide customer service. Young entrepreneurs can then conceal their identity as a big and established corporation without the problems of acting like one.



      In order to sign up for an FBA account, merchants living in Mexico, Canada and the US have to have a Selling on Amazon account. The merchants can start adding products to Amazon’s catalog either by incorporating their inventory management software within Amazon’s platform, in bulk or one at a time.

      Listings on their website are shown with “Amazon Prime” logo. The best part about this, there’s no additional charge for the Amazon Prime free 2-day shipping and there’s also free shipping on all eligible orders. FBA could be integrated directly to the website of the vendor. This way, customers may shop through Amazon without having to leave the third party website.

      A Word from the Big Guy

      However, Amazon recommends their merchants to use its eCommerce service in ensuring that their products are going to be eCommerce ready. This is the only way they can provide guarantee that their products can be securely and safely transported to their customers. They are making boxes, polybags, bubble pack, stretch wrap and several other shipping materials easily accessible to vendors Selling on Amazon. There is some fulfillment by Amazon fees while other services are optional.
     
       Following are the benefits you can reap assuming that you’ve started your FBA business right.

  • ·         Low startup cost – when using FBA, it’s not necessarily a requirement to fork out considerable amount of money to launch your business. You can literally save in staff, storage costs, shipping, supplies, office rent and everything you need for the success of your eCommerce store. Well obviously, there is fulfillment by Amazon fees that you have to settle to use their service. Don’t worry too much about the fee as it’s justifiable from the benefits you can get from their platform.
  • ·        The mark of trust – we know that in business, it is extremely important to build trust among customers. When you’re using Amazon FBA, it makes your store become a trustworthy name right there and then despite you’re just in the early stages of your operation. This is due to the reason that you’re under the umbrella of trust that Amazon has built among its consumers for years it has been in the 
  • ·        Pull in more customers – let’s face the fact, one of the major challenges of any startup businesses are marketing. Finding, attracting and convincing customers to buy from you is beyond words to explain particularly for new entrepreneurs. This is true especially in crowded online marketplace such as Amazon. It’s comparable to finding a needle in a haystack. Just picture how hard it could be. But thanks to Amazon FBA, you can make your newly opened store to easily standout and attract customers.
  •  ·      It’s all taken care of – much like in 3PL warehouses, Amazon FBA takes care of everything you need to catapult your business to success. Be it packing, shipping or warehousing, you have a cushion to whatever help you require. Try to envision it, you have the Technology, Competency and Excellence of one of the world’s biggest online retailers supporting your business. See how much you can reap from such.
  •           Outstanding customer service – an online marketplace as big as Amazon will never reach its stature today without remarkable customer service team. And just like the point prior, their CSR will be the responding to any customer demands, queries, returns and several other concerns. Thus, the only thing you need to do is to focus on how you will grow your business

      The Bottom Line

      Regardless of the niche for your eCommerce store, it is critical that you are backed with the right support. This will serve as your protection towards any bottlenecks that will come along the way and if ever there are, you know that you can overcome it anytime soon. Whether it is 3PL warehouses or Amazon FBA, you need to allot time in grasping the concept of each option. This is the only real way of making the most of each world.
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Lawrence Christopher Martinez
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The power of the name: why we prefer the well-known brand

The power of the name: why we prefer the well-known brand




Who has not ever heard someone saying that is better to buy one thing than another 'because that brand is already known? It is quite likely that we will not realize it while we are defending why we buy one thing or why we buy another that this element is having a direct impact on our buying decisions.

Why do we care if a brand is known or another is not? 

In reality, it could be said that the same mechanism works that make us more careful when we open the door to someone we do not know someone who we do. From one we always expect the worst and from another, we expect the best. So, the way we interact with each other (even if we really know anything about each other) is completely different. You only have to look at the opening degrees of the door the next time we face this situation. As the person who is ringing the most known or most expected was the door, we opened the door to receive it.

With the brands, in the end, the same thing happens. The more we know a brand, the more trust we give to what it does and what it offers us. We hope fewer mistakes and we do not analyze with so much detail what is putting us ahead. The less we know about a brand, the more we act in a completely different way. We see the situation in a much less positive way, we are much more critical and we are much more suspicious.

To this, we add that, in a completely irrational way, we assume that the brand we know and its products will be better. We assume that they will be of a better quality, that they will have better results and that they are much more reliable. It matters little that in reality none of this is assured and that the lesser known brand may be superior to what we already knew, that their products may have much more innovation behind or a superior design. The known (unless we have a bad history with that mark) will always be better.

The power to make your name known

For this reason, brands invest so much money and focus such an important part of their strategy in making their name known, that it 'sounds' to consumers. That the name and the identity enter into the subconscious of the consumer can help in the moment of making the decision of purchase this brand.

But this also has a b-side, a situation that is positioned in the antipodes of what happens with known brands. For brands that are just starting out, for newcomers to the business world, the value of the name is a drag and one quite powerful. One of the reasons why it is so hard for brands to find their niche market and, above all, to conquer it is the fact that nobody knows them. Its name does not sound to consumers and therefore the entry barrier is much higher.

How to get rid of this problem? One of the strategies to follow is to position yourself using an intermediary: make some type of agreement at the launch that causes the new product or the new brand to 'contaminate' with a known name. A walk through the aisles of a supermarket allows you to easily find examples. Not a few newcomers launch with a message of another brand or product or as a gift with another product 'for you to try'. That is another way to reach consumers. They must be allowed to test the product without it being a problem (or a disbursement) for them to break the previous reluctance.
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Julio Alfonzo
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How the media and social networks impact on impulsive buying

How the media and social networks impact on impulsive buying



Social networks have created a new way of communicating. They have become a kind of inevitable, prominent element. We are all connected to all of our contacts and we are at the same moment in which we do things. We are on vacation, we upload a photo of our glorious hotel breakfast. We buy a product, we quickly tell it on Facebook or Twitter sharing how good (or bad) the experience has been. We share the information in real time and receive the information in real time and that has completely changed how we relate to it.

And if things start to be so immediate, our reaction to them also begins to be so. We are always in a sort of real-time conversation with others and we are always commenting on what happens in the moment that happens. But this immediacy has not only an impact on information and our reaction to it but also modifies other elements. Our buying habits and purchasing decisions are greatly modified by what happens in social networks.

The social environment has become a new prescriber

The products that are mentioned by friends and family enter into our purchasing decisions and lead them while taking direct action to find what they want to consume. Who didn't make a question in social networks about what to buy? And who did not ask for recommendations and opinions about a product that interests you?

The social networking buying buttons were born a little with that idea in the head. Consumers used social networks as an element of buying recommendation and discovered through the many products they wanted, so why not capitalize on this reality and turn it into a way to generate business figures? Many were the social networks that tried it not so long ago, but all this peak of interest stayed in boring waters and did not really work. However, you should not think that social networks do not work as buying recommendations and have no impact on impulse purchases. They have it but in another way.

Consumers do not buy on social networks but do use them as a vehicle to find what to buy. Social networks are not a store, but a reference element that has a great impact when it comes to redirecting the consumer. There is social proof, seeing others buying a product and receiving a kind of social blessing to do the same, to prove it.
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Julio Alfonzo
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Maintaining Optimal Inventory with AiHello

Maintaining Optimal Inventory with AiHello






Inventory forecasting is the need of the time for retailers as well as wholesalers. They can use it to determine their requirement of goods or inventory in the near future. It is mainly a predictive analysis that is mainly based on the reorder points and the order quantities.
The reorder points tell us when we should order a particular inventory item and the Economic Order Quantity tells us how much we should order. Both are evaluated using special formulas.
There are many factors involved in the process of stock forecasting. For example, there is a forecast period for which the prediction is made, the trends of the items in terms of their sale, and the base demand or the current supply of the goods.
It is paramount for any retail business owner to have a complete analysis of his present stock and the future state of his inventory leveraged with the demand of the consumes.
Estimating the future product demands is the starting point for any business to begin planning about its inventory management to meet that demand. Since it is a process that must be done scrupulously, optimization algorithms like AiHello are available for use that are made to serve the purpose.

AiHello

Using AiHello can be beneficial especially for a business owner that has his or her business spread to multiple geographic extents. For example, if his business runs in the US but he also needs to manage inventory in Mexico, he’d need a system that could allow him to manage his inventory remotely. AiHello could be that system.
It enables business as such to know which products are selling well in any location around the world. When the owners learn about the sale performance of a product in a particular region, depending on it, they can find suitable warehouses and provide timely shipping to their customers.
You could have this benefit also and there’s more to it.
By knowing exactly about the base demand and the inventory level in your warehouses, you can forecast future demands efficiently. That could mean that you’d be able to predict your stocking needs and the quantity of inventory that must be stocked in a particular warehouse.

Why have AiHello for all this?

The insights that AiHello renders are invaluable for smart decisions regarding a retailer business or a wholesaler to keep them in fluent operations.

The features

For any business, the solution to its inventory forecasting problems needs to be optimum. AiHello, for that matter, has the following features:
·       Comprehensive data availability to help you in forecasting
·       Email campaign manager to help you take heed of the customer feedback
·       Global service to enable you to access all countries at an affordable price

In the endeavor of forecasting the future needs of a business, as evident from the features, optimization algorithm such as AiHello can help you to greater extents. There’s more to it than what’s stated in the scope of this article. You can find all the rest of the information here: AiHello.

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Ganesh Krishnan
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Why do consumers buy more and more online?

Why do consumers buy more and more online?



In recent years, consumers have begun to buy more and more over the internet. This has completely changed how it is consumed, how products are sold and how positioning strategies are created for them. Stores have to play with new rules and brands have to move in a scenario that is completely different from what they had in the beginning. Things have become something very different, something that brands and consumers have to keep in mind.

What has pushed consumers into the arms of e-commerce? Everyone has their own story of why and how they started buying online, but the truth is that, if you analyze all those stories and all those testimonies, you can find some guidelines that explain this boom in e-commerce.

Consumers value comfort

One of the great tricks of e-commerce and one of the reasons that lead many buyers to make their purchases through it is in the ease of buying. One can simply have what it wants and search with a few clicks and sometimes (thanks to easier purchase systems) with a single click. The consumer can do it without leaving home and at any time he wants, which adds an extra comfort.

You have lost your fear of buying online

One of the main barriers to entry for e-commerce was in the fear that consumers had to buy online. There was some logic to it and it was not difficult to understand why this was happening. Consumers could not see the products in a tangible way, they had to wait for them and they had to give the seller sensitive banking information. Buying online had a bit of risk and forced buyers not only to leave their comfort zone but also to change their habits and try something completely new.

However, this has changed and has underpinned the success of e-commerce. Consumers are becoming more comfortable buying online and have normalized the process. Perhaps this can be explained because consumers rely more and more on e-commerce.

Companies have entered a race to be the fastest

In addition to being able to gain the confidence of consumers more and more, the truth is that the online stores are playing with other tricks to majors to position themselves before the buyers. One of the problems that e-commerce had was that it could not beat the speed of buying in store. When purchased in a physical store, the product is received at the exact time of purchase. One takes the product home, something that does not happen in electronic commerce, where you have to wait for that purchase to arrive.

This has become a much less relevant issue in recent times because e-commerce companies have been involved in a race to reduce times. Things happen more and more rapidly in e-commerce, which makes everything so much faster and, therefore, consumers have slower waiting times when receiving their purchases. In fact, in some markets and in some scenarios, the time is already only one hour, which makes things go much faster and the online shopping experience is much more positive.

The reign of information benefits the e-commerce

To all this must be added that, in these times, consumers are looking for more and more information while they consume. They want to know about the products they buy and want to be able to access a lot of data. Consumers today want to compare prices, want to read opinions of other consumers or want to see what many stores offer in a short time. This is something that e-commerce gets and that physical stores do not manage to match easily.
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Julio Alfonzo
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Those over 50, the new opportunity for electronic commerce

Those over 50, the new opportunity for electronic commerce






Millennials have ceased to be the future of electronic commerce in favor of Silver Internet users. Internet use among those over 65 has increased greatly in recent years. The first users of Internet shopping were the Millennials, however, this generation has lost purchasing power in favor of their parents and grandparents, who are maintaining stable incomes and even pensions, have more time available and money to spend on the Internet.

On the other hand, the population of the whole world is aging. By 2050, it is estimated that there will be more people over 65 in the world than children under 14. In particular, the number of adults over the age of 80 is expected to quadruple by 395 million.

The idea that Internet and online shopping are oblivious to this older consumer has become obsolete, however, the budget allocated to this target audience in marketing departments is minimal.

However, online retailers are not easy because the category of over 50 is very varied. It is a complex group with different interests, opinions, and abilities. There are huge differences between the "young at heart" who still work with 55-year-old retirees or 70-year-old assets, although everyone has the potential to shop online and consume.

For the younger generation, factors such as shipping costs are some of the biggest barriers to online shopping - something that is not of concern to Silver Internauts. On the contrary, ease of payment is important for the older generation. The Silver Internauts also feel more comfortable with web stores that have physical stores.

Online stores have to consider this group of consumers when designing their websites so that the products are presented clearly and to make the payment process simple.

In addition to this, most Silver Internet users search and buy whatever they want through a laptop computer. Only a quarter use their mobile phones. This vision is fundamental to build loyalty to this generation and can help learning to develop applications for mobile devices and websites, work on marketing priorities, segment and effectively distribute marketing investment.

Not taking into account the needs of people over 50 and ignoring their importance in setting marketing strategies is a missed opportunity to differentiate themselves from the competition and attract a very profitable audience, as well as having a detrimental impact on the sales.

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Julio Alfonzo
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Why everyone should care about the brand within the company.

Why everyone should care about the brand within the company.



There are many temptations when talking about brand management and the value of the same ones. One of them is to think that the brand and everything that corresponds to it is an issue that is only relevant for certain professionals and certain sectors. You can fall into the trap of compartmentalizing everything and put everything in its box, in its specific space and its specific niche, which makes you lose sight of the major problem.

In today's world of business, things no longer work exactly that way (if they ever did), and companies have to focus everything much more holistically than they did in business. It is becoming more important to see everything as a whole.

From the outset, consumers' own relationship with brands has changed. Consumers are increasingly able to access more and more information and are able to see in a much broader way what they have in front of them. Now they not only care about the products they are consuming, for example, they also want to know everything about the brands and companies that are behind them, from how they operate and how they manufacture things to how they treat their employees. This set of data and information is what has become a kind of compass today for consumption.

And to continue, the very importance of the brand and its value is so important that it should not be minimized or left alone in a few hands. 

The brand's value.

The brand is, it recalls, a kind of glue that holds everything together. Companies offer things to market, but branding is what makes them perceive one way or another and what makes consumers connect with it and its products.

Therefore, the brand should not be seen as only the concern and work that the CMO should carry out. "The brand does not belong only to the CMO," he recalls. Since the head of marketing is the main responsible for that field and the one who works in branding, making products known or positioning brands, its role is crucial, it is true, but not for this the others should be disregarded of the brand.

In reality, the brand is a work of all and an obligation / concern of all the different positions of the firm. In it they have to work from the CEO to the brand ambassadors, passing through all the intermediate points. Everyone involved in the company has to be aware of its importance and its weight and has to be able to understand its value.

And, once it is clear that the brand is crucial and that we have to work on it, there should be no doubt that there is also to invest in it. Allocating resources to the brand is, says the expert, how to achieve a return on investment. Cultivating the brand can improve your knowledge among the public and arouse emotions or can serve to connect with the consumer.

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Julio Alfonzo
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