For those looking for a 3PL, what factors are most important to you?

by gkcity21. Posted on Sep 10, 2020    0    2

This is for anyone looking for a 3PL/fulfillment center/warehouse...

What are the most important factors you are looking for in a 3PL? Try and be specific!


  • Pick & pack
  • Storage
  • Account/setup fees
  • Shipping
  • Customer Service
  • Location
  • Kitting
  • Packaging
  • Custom requests
  • Minimum order quantity


bbqyak 1

I've used 3PL quite a lot to jump start my business. I still do for transportation but not so much warehousing anymore since I got my own. Sometimes I will just for location sake. Never used it as a fulfillment center to ship goods out however.

Important factors for me...

  • Price obviously. If the price doesn't work I won't have a business. Some places have a huge minimum pallet quantity.

  • Case picking. Many places will not allow case picking or have redundant minimums and fees.

  • Hours of receiving. I need a place that is open ideally 24/7.

  • Hours for pick up. If I want to come in on a Sunday to pick my stuff up or at 6pm after work. Or very short notice pick ups.

  • Customer service. Friendly on the phone, none of this you're bothering me attitude. Prompt responses. Notification of arrival of shipment.

  • Quality Control done upon arrival of goods. Nothing worse than having some idiot receive the goods and they're all in crap condition and they don't even notice.

    For transportation...

  • Notification of pick up. Carriers need to let me know when the goods have been picked up. My current carrier barely does this but I mostly trust them by now. Back to the price thing, I have worked with a company that is super organized and has very high customer service, but their price was 2x as high. That will only work as a backup.

  • Easy process to file claims on damaged goods. Don't want to go back and forth arguing about why I deserve a refund.

    Like I said, I've never used 3PL to ship out goods, but if I did I would want a notification of when the goods have left and when they have been delivered. I would want a fair price per case, weight, pallet or however it is charged.

    I would assume if I did much more shipping out of goods and on a large volume per order I would want some form of GPS tracking.

    I was lucky to find a place that would just let me waltz in at will. No appointment required, no check in... Just walk in grab what I want and go. Obviously I can see how this would be a huge problem for most companies however.
  gkcity21 1

Wow they were really flexible! That's how we want to be as well. You were definitely looking for a very localized 3PL.