Logistics is an essential part of supply chain management which needs to be observed in the given scenario that poses significant challenges to the import-export business. The post-pandemic trends have exposed the weak points of already existing global supply chains and the transportation industry is in dire need of reviewing and reforming the current shipping and logistics business operations.
According to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the logistics industry supports over 2.2 crore employment in India and contributes 5% to the country’s GDP. The state and union governments of India have given the logistics sector major policy support, which has greatly aided the infrastructure development for logistics throughout the nation.
While eCommerce continues to grow, the role of the 3PL (Third-Party logistics) companies in facilitating online business is rising too, as a result of which, new-age 3PL companies like NimbusPost are significantly catering to the demand of the rising eCommerce businesses in India and abroad.
In order to understand the importance and role of 3PL in handling logistics, various elements of the 3PL providers and the best 3PL companies which are taking the great initiative in redefining the Indian logistics market, this blog will act as an easy guide for you.
Understanding Third-Party Logistics or 3PL
A 3PL or third-party logistics provider is a company which specialises in distribution, warehousing, and order fulfilment in an eCommerce business. They are responsible for looking after the entire process of supply chain management, starting right from an order shipment and concluding with the last-mile logistics.
Every 3PL company holds their own expertise and experience in the logistics and shipping industry as they understand the constantly evolving trends and changing patterns in demand and supply. They act like a middleman between our eCommerce business and the end customer, holding accountability for safe and secure delivery.
What are the Services Offered By a Third-Party Logistics Provider?
Every 3PL company provides comprehensive services for handling the eCommerce logistics of a company such as:
- Product procurement
- Storage and warehousing
- Inventory management
- Order fulfilment
- Packaging and shipping
- Optimization of fleets and routes
Utilizing a third-party logistics management company will provide you access to distribution hubs you may not have had access to before. This may be the result of your present location, your incapacity to ship the goods to particular countries, or simply the promptness of the transactions.
A 3PL company is also a company with experience in this sector of the economy. They can handle customer support, reverse logistics, and other components of the eCommerce sales pipeline since they are fully aware of what is required to deliver your products to their destination in the stipulated period of time.
10 best 3PL companies for efficiently handling our logistics
Among the number of significant players competing in the logistics market, there are few expectations who are single-handedly tackling the ever-changing needs of eCommerce businesses.
Nimbuspost is a tech-oriented eCommerce shipping aggregator company based in Gurugram, Haryana. Launched in 2018, it has been establishing its presence in the Indian shipping and logistics industry by enabling businesses of diverse scales to outsource their shipping operations via its AI-powered logistics solutions. Currently, the business is serving in about 29,000+ pin codes and 196+ countries, with comprehensive shipping, warehousing and fulfilment services.
Their useful dashboard features, fraud detection tools, WhatsApp communication updates, live shipment tracking, etc., are helpful for businesses to customize their shipping needs and requirements. Their standard domestic shipping rate starts at just INR 21/50 gm, which is a very cost-effective offering among its other competitors.
In business since 2014, ShipBob is a global supplier of eCommerce fulfilment services. This organization has operations in over 220 nations and a network of fulfilment centres spanning North America and Europe. To provide eCommerce businesses with simple, efficient, and workable fulfilment options, the platform makes use of innovative technology solutions created by ShipBob.
ShipBob enables integrations with marketplaces like Amazon and eBay as well as online shops like WooCommerce and Shopify. With the aid of their 3PL solution, eCommerce businesses can distribute their goods among various warehouses and sales channels.
A significant global player in logistics, FedEx works with online stores that receive a lot of traffic to fulfil orders. Although FedEx has a vast transportation network, it also has alliances with several businesses to provide a seamless fulfilment experience. Integrations with online marketplaces like Etsy and Walmart as well as online selling platforms like Shopify are available through the FedEx API.
FedEx provides crucial 3PL services such as packaging, order fulfilment, warehousing and storage, and reverse logistics. Through a dedicated eCommerce platform, the 3PL company enables businesses to remotely manage their inventories.
- Red Stag
With its main office in Tennessee, Red Stag is a third-party logistics company. This business, which was established in 2013, specialises in the fulfilment of large quantities of goods and commodities that need to be assembled before shipping. With two warehouse locations in the central region, this business provides its services throughout the entire US continent.
The eCommerce marketplaces like Shopify, WooCommerce, Amazon, BigCommerce, and others are integrated with Red Stag. The business provides a platform for cloud-based inventory and warehouse management.
Founded in 2001, it is a part of the Rakuten group, which is one of the largest eCommerce companies with headquarters in Japan. Operating 13 warehouses across the US’s continental territory, this business serves practically all zip codes there. The Rakuten Group, one of the biggest eCommerce providers typically works with clients who generate a minimum of 250 orders per month and is perfect for eCommerce firms with bulk order quantities.
Rakuten provides integrations to several online markets and storefronts, such as Magento, Amazon, eBay, and others.
German-based DHL is a well-known global logistics provider with a reputation of its own. This corporation, a subsidiary of Deutsche Post, maintains a presence in more than 35 nations and offers global servicing. This business provides services to eCommerce enterprises and is integrated with the most well-known online selling and reselling platforms.
DHL provides comprehensive eCommerce logistics solutions, including order fulfilment, shipping, and warehousing. The supplier provides value-added services such as product packing, assembly, and direct delivery.
- Ware IQ
WareIQ, a 2019 startup supported by Y-combinator, has gradually evolved to become the top supplier of full-stack eCommerce fulfilment tech solutions for some of the most well-known companies in India. For eCommerce businesses, WareIQ provides a full-stack platform that enables same-day and next-day delivery to customers — an Amazon Prime-like experience that is accessible to everybody.
The entire range of complex operations in the eCommerce fulfilment process is handled by WareIQ’s world-class WMS functions, from Inbound Operations like scanning and quality checks, through 100% accurate Pick and Pack, to Inventory Management across all channels.
- Blue Dart
In South Asia, Blue Dart is a well-known logistics and distribution business that relies heavily on air freight for transportation. To over 35,000 pin codes in India, it provides delivery and logistical services. Because Blue Dart is a member of the DPDHL Group (DHL Express, DHL Global Forwarding, and DHL Supply Chain), it has access to the largest global logistics network, which spans more than 220 nations and provides a variety of services like air express, freight forwarding, supply chain solutions, and customs clearance.
Shadowfax is a delivery and fulfilment company based in Bangalore that was established in 2015 and specialises in hyperlocal delivery via a technology-based platform. The business has grown to become the largest on-demand hyperlocal delivery service in India and provides analytics platforms to track the entire process. It provides service to more than 500 cities and over 7000 pin codes.
The XpressBees 3PL Logistics Company was established in Pune, Maharashtra, in 2015. They have become one of India’s fastest-growing businesses in the logistics service industry. They provide comprehensive supply and distribution services from beginning to end, meeting the entire fulfilment requirements of sellers. They cover more than 100 hubs, 13000+ pin codes, and service centres.
While choosing the right 3PL provider for your business, it is important that you evaluate and compare the various features offered by them such as price slabs, shipping policies, customer care services, reverse logistics, etc. In the end, all that really matters is the fact that your chosen logistics company can understand your core values and serve you accordingly.
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