10 Tips to Optimise Your Private Label Fulfilment Processes
As a private label business, order fulfilment is an essential measure that you need to master. With a smart fulfilment strategy, you can ensure customer satisfaction by having your goods delivered swiftly, safely and as cost-effective as possible.
Order fulfilment is generally more difficult if you’re managing it yourself. To ease the process, you can hire a 3PL service provider like Australian Private Label, that not only create and package your private label products but ship them too. This elevates the entire customer experience while securing your business the best price possible for excellent service.
Consumer demand for fast shipping times is higher than ever, adding severe pressure to smaller e-commerce businesses. Competition is high amongst brands for express shipping options, with next-day delivery an expectation by many online shoppers.
As you’re already navigating the niche market of selling private label products through your online business, we have some suggestions to create a smoother run. Keep reading for our 11 tips to optimise order fulfilment for your private label business for an easier life, happier customers and more money for your brand.
What Is Private Label Fulfilment?
Private label fulfilment processes refer to your order fulfilment strategy. It’s the process of receiving, processing and distributing private label products to your customers. In short, it begins with the customer placing an order online and ends when the goods arrive in their hands.
There’s a process in between that must run smoothly to optimise time, money and customer satisfaction. The sooner you can get your own products to the consumer, the better. However, many variables can impact the fulfilment process, such as inventory levels, order volume and an inadequate system.
10 Tips to Optimise Your Private Label Fulfillment Process
Private label products are becoming more popular, and with it, the use of third-party service providers (3PLs) to manage, fulfil, and ship your goods. But to get to the fulfilment stage, you first need products for your private label online store, a targeted audience and marketing strategy to help drive natural traffic, and a good supplier to carry out the rest of the process.
1. Brainstorm Product Ideas for Your Private Label
The first step to fulfilling product requests is to have a product for your own company to stock. Before you can start selling online, you need to figure out what to sell! So, it's time to sit down and come up with a product idea (or preferably several) worth selling that customers might not only want to purchase, but also feel confident in putting their hard-earned money into.
Private label products are one of the most flexible types to sell, as you can come up with virtually any idea if it's lucrative and find a place to both manufacture and distribute it, as long as there's a market for your online store product ideas.
We recommend taking time to think about what your private labelling goals are and what kind of products you want to sell online, as the stock you offer essentially defines your e-commerce business— it's worth thinking twice about what you might be selling!
2. Conduct Market Research and Product Research
Next, it's a wise idea to see what else is available out there. While selling a private label product in the same sector or niche markets as other generic products is not necessarily an issue, you might not want to enter immediately into an oversaturated market.
While finding a niche market might seem daunting, especially after a cursory glance through all the Shopify store and even Amazon options out there.
But one of the best tools to figure out exactly what type of markets and products are already available is a Chrome extension called Jungle Scout. This handy little extension allows you to see statistics for future product sales, average reviews from customers, and view the competitive data for a variety of trending product ideas.
Making sure your private label business is not foraying into overstocked sectors is a good step to keeping your stock flowing and fulfilment requests satisfied. In particular, if you expect your private label products to be competing with white label products, which are sold under your brand but not formulated by you, figuring out where you stand in the market is important.
While white labeling and private labels are typical rivals, but if you understand both demand and how using a 3PL manufacturer can help with items sold, you can assess the process better.
3. Optimize E-Commerce Business Product Listings
Have you given thought to how your customers will find your private label products? With everything that is available these days, it's one of the most important aspects of becoming a private labelling seller and actually getting sales to fulfil! So, to get your business out there and achieve sales, it's time to talk about how to optimise your business product listings.
If you know anything about the Google search algorithm, you have likely heard of SEO best practices or search engine optimization. This is the process of driving search traffic in an organic manner from peoples' original search for specific product pages or services, and funnelling customers to the best-optimized product listings in innovative ways with keywords and descriptions.
And as you might imagine, this is even more important for a private label brand that might have even more competition from other brands for online sales. It's important to master keyword optimization by researching other e-commerce business products and identifying your target audience, to specifically craft marketing and selling pages that draw customers to your services.
4. Price Private Label Products to Start Selling
To sell online and fulfil your private labels' products, pricing is essential. Don't forget to account for the initial startup costs that typically come along with beginning your private label products business, which often can cost up to a few thousand at the outset.
This should include manufacturer and shipping costs, as well as labelling and packaging. But once you price private label products correctly, selling for not only active cash flow is possible, but also a passive income once you choose the right 3PL service provider, like Australian Private Label.
Pricing can be a tricky thing to get right, but one way to approach the cost of private label products is to assess other items on the market that are similar.
Customers tend to be unlikely to spend three times more money on your product than a competitors', even if yours is made with better ingredients— it's a delicate balance between quality and cost, and you need to consider your profit margin for each item based on demand.
5. Find a Reliable Manufacturer or Suppliers for Your Private Label Product
For anyone starting their own brand in the private label business sector, you undoubtedly want to set yourself up for success. As such, the best idea is to source suppliers that have all the tools that allow your products to be manufactured, fulfilled, and shipped out to customers in a timely manner, thanks to all the resources that your sole, one company might not have access to.
That's where a 3PL service supplier comes in— and selecting the right one. Though getting into a business arrangement with any provider can be daunting, for a private label brand it's even more crucial to make an appropriate match.
You can always end the agreement, but the fine print might produce some limitations. And because private label products primarily rely on 3PL suppliers to sell your own brand and really make your product idea available as an outsourced resource, this relationship is essential.
That being said, the following are some questions to ask your potential manufacturer to make sure it's the right fit for your company, including when it comes to selling, inventory, and shipping services based on customer demand. This is the essential step to get fulfilment in selling your inventory, so this is one of the most critical steps to consider.
- What is the price per unit when ordering mass inventory?
- What are the shipping costs and turnaround time?
- What private label supplements do you offer, such as packaging materials?
- What are the payment terms and methods accepted?
- What are the customization options for my own products?
6. Carry Out Content Marketing
Getting your brand out there is a sure-fire way to get business and reach customers, who will then require your manufacturer's fulfilment system.
If you are just starting out, consider selling products at a discount, particularly if they are seasonal products, in order to build an initial customer base. You could also consider shipping deals or bundled products that your 3PL can help you fulfil, including ordering samples.
On top of sales and monetary incentives for your product line, consider marketing campaigns, ads, or even social influence posts that showcase your items. Typically, the customer places a lot of merit in good advertising, so a good way to sell your private label products and reach the fulfilment stage is through a fantastic marketing campaign to drum up demand.
7. Good Inventory Management
While your 3PL supplier certainly helps with getting your private label products shipped out to the customer and getting orders fulfilled, the best manufacturers also have inventory management assistance available.
For example, when your manufacturer gets the order and begins to process it, the inventory is not coming directly from you— and that's one of the assets of using 3PL services. Warehouse space and inventory management is all but taken away from your responsibilities, allowing you to focus on running your private label business, making product decisions, and marketing for better demand.
You don't have to worry about managing your inventory entirely, and can rely on the resources provided by your 3PL for fulfilment, stocking, and storage— it's a win-win!
8. Do Your Due Diligence and Quality Control
A common snag that private label businesses run into includes quality control issues. But if you rely on a 3PL service for manufacture and distribution, quality products should no longer be a problem. Instead of having to craft your own product and worry about the red tape and legal paperwork that comes with manufacturing usable goods, your 3PL manufacturer already has the facilities and expertise to keep up with demand, and get the perfect products sold every time.
9. Set Up The Best Packaging, Design, and Logo for Your Private Label Brand
As the first thing your clientele will typically see is your company name and branding design, it's important to put thought into the physical appearance of the fulfilment system. From fancy boxes with printed company name labels to minimalist designs, what you sell the products in does matter.
Plus, styling shipping and packaging design can be one of the most exciting parts of setting up your own brand! Whether or not you are a graphic artist, brainstorming the visual aspects of a private label company and getting in touch with its aesthetics can make you understand and connect with your business even more.
And if you can come up with a design that stands out from all the rest on the market, that's even better— the more unique and eye-catching your products are, the more likely shoppers are to gravitate towards those selections, the higher the demand, and even to click "add to cart".
10. Shoot Product Photos to Sell Private Label Products
If you are selling products online, you definitely need a visual component. The customer places a lot of value in the description and reviews of a private label product, particularly when shopping virtually where they cannot handle or test the item. That is why we strongly recommend using product photos as private label supplements to the customer's experience.
Adding product images to your online store not only fosters trust between shoppers and what you are selling, but also shows that you have nothing to hide in your brand and marketing. And creating that initial relationship when someone clicks on your private label product is the first step to sales, fulfilment, and shipping.
Try to use product images that feature only the product, preferably against a neutral background and without additional visual distractions.
The image itself need not be fancy, but should be of good quality and an aesthetic match to your brand and company itself. Additionally, don't add filters to the images or digitally alter them too much— shoppers looking for products online want to see as natural a shot as possible.
And while you can shoot photos yourself with a good camera, it might be worth the price to hire a professional photographer who can take the great images for further use in marketing and ads!
From private label manufacturer demand to shipping, packing to distribution, the relationship between your brand and a 3PL service provider is essential for stock and fulfilment. But the process of getting to shipping itself is multi-fold, and the best practices for selling private label products and fulfilling them are just as important.
That includes brainstorming your products and marketing strategies, finding the niche that people will want to purchase from, and setting up a mutually beneficial relationship with the right 3PL and private label manufacturer for you and your company.
And for the best manufacturer that will help you with every step of your business journey, Australian Private Label is ready to answer any questions you might have.