Once a niche market dominated by online-only players, eCommerce is now a prominent feature within the retail landscape, and an integral component of nearly every retailer’s business strategy. According to data from Statista, over two billion people purchased goods or services online in 2020, and eCommerce sales surpassed $4.2 trillion USD worldwide. Forecasts indicate that the eCommerce market will continue to grow at an accelerated rate, with projected revenues of $6.3 trillion USD by 2024.
In order to maintain a competitive edge in this incredibly lucrative market, dedicated online retailers and traditional retailers with eCommerce channels alike must find ways to become leaner and more efficient, starting with their order fulfillment process. An excellent way to achieve this is to make pick and pack fulfillment part of your larger order fulfillment strategy.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at pick and pack fulfillment — what it is, benefits to using it, popular methods and more.
Pick and pack — sometimes known as pick, pack and ship — is an order fulfillment method in which workers pick individual items from warehouse shelves and package them for shipment onsite. The pick and pack process is fairly simple:
Pick and pack fulfillment has evolved with eCommerce retailers as they look to drive more efficiency, cost effectiveness and rapid turnaround times. To illustrate this, consider the pick and pack process compared to traditional order fulfillment.
Traditional order fulfillment for retailers involves pulling entire crates or pallets of goods — a process that typically requires the support of multiple warehouse workers and the use of equipment such as forklifts and pallet trucks. Traditional order fulfillment also typically originates from a large-scale distribution center or cross-dock for sorting before they’re sent out for delivery to a store or other retail location. Pick and pack fulfillment eliminates the “middleman” — the store — from the process, instead packaging and sorting orders for delivery direct to the end consumer. In doing so, pick and pack fulfillment allows for faster turnaround times and enables retailers to fulfill high volumes of eCommerce orders at a more rapid rate.
Pick, pack and ship is typically considered a form of value-added service because it goes beyond standard warehousing services and streamlines the order fulfillment process.
Similar to traditional order fulfillment, you can take a few different approaches to picking and packing, including:
Regardless whether your eCommerce business — or your warehouse — is large or small, there are a few basic best practices you should follow to ensure that the picking and packing process moves as smoothly as possible:
Need help optimizing order fulfillment for your eCommerce operation? Legacy Supply Chain is here to lead the way. We specialize in providing high-touch fulfillment warehousing services, delivering decades’-worth of operational expertise and supplying the most advanced order fulfillment solutions, so you can fulfill the promises you make to your customers.
Q: What is pick and pack order fulfillment?
A: Pick and pack order fulfillment is the process by which workers — also known as pickers — pick items from warehouse shelves and package them in individual boxes or envelopes. Pick and pack, which is sometimes referred to as pick, pack and ship, is different from traditional order fulfillment in that orders are packaged for shipment and delivery onsite, rather than sent to a distribution center.
Pick and pack fulfillment is typically reserved for smaller orders and is considered a value-added service because it exceeds standard warehousing services and streamlines the order fulfillment process.
Q: Are there different pick and pack fulfillment methods?
A: Yes. The four most common pick and pack fulfillment methods are piece picking, batch picking, zone picking and wave picking.
Q: What are the benefits of picking and packing?
A: Pick and pack is more cost-efficient and offers faster turnaround times than traditional order fulfillment strategies, making it a popular option for eCommerce retailers.
Q: How much do pick and pack services typically cost?
A: The answer to that question depends on a number of factors, including how many online orders you receive per day/week/month, assembly instructions for your product(s), how you package orders and so on. To get a custom quote, please contact Legacy’s sales team today.
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