ECommerce Warehousing: Everything You Need to Know

by Michael Kotendzhi | Warehousing
ECommerce Warehousing Everything You Need to Know

In the last couple of years, we've seen companies, both big and small, turn more and more towards selling online. And although lots of people are quick to point out it's all because of the pandemic — we don't feel that way. It certainly made more people shop online, but it's a shift that would happen anyway. The only difference is that now it was sudden, but it stuck with us. People are still buying from the web a lot, and sellers need to store that inventory somewhere before shipping it. To get you up to speed on how to do it, we'll tell you everything you need to know about eCommerce warehousing.

What is eCommerce Warehousing?

There's no need for us to get overly technical here. In essence, it's a place where you store your physical inventory before the goods are sold and shipped. And whether you're running a small business or a giant company— the goal is to keep your warehouse effective and organized.

If you keep track of your inventory the right way, you'll save lots of time. Moreover, there won't be any necessary stresses to put you off course. It's a vital part of the process, and you'll make your job easier if you sort it out right away. Let's see what you should think about if you want to get there.

Is Your Living Room Still Cutting It?

There's no shame in starting small. Amazon was born in Jef Bezos's garage, and look at where they are now. People like buying online, and that trend won't change soon. So if you see your chance to make some money from it, by all means, go for it.

Of course, you'll want to keep your costs down initially, and the best way to do it is by making your home the headquarters. You set the whole operation up in your garage or living room, and you get on with it. However, it'll only work for a while. At some point, you'll outgrow your house, and you'll need to up your game.

At this moment, you want to think about getting an actual warehouse and maybe a CRM system. Although CRMs aren't that common among one-person-run businesses, if you're expanding, be sure to explore this option. It'll help you streamline your process and make eCommerce warehousing and customer organization a breeze.

Why Do You Need a Warehouse? 

As we mentioned, the demand for eCommerce products is higher than ever. However, it isn't all about the number of orders you get. Customers expect their packages to get to them fast and unscathed, and if you want to stay in the game, you'll have to make that happen.

Getting a proper warehouse will help you with that in many ways. Of course, you still should try to keep your costs low, and with the digital tools we have available today, it's not that hard. You'll ship your products quicker, and you'll save time, money, and your nerves.

Streamline and Outsource

If you want to make your business as efficient as possible, you might want to learn about the benefits of third-party logistics. It's a great way to take the burden off your back regarding warehousing and inventory management.

With 3PL, you can automate your inventory restocks, make your shipping more transparent, and access real-time inventory status in just a few clicks. On top of that, you can sync orders from multiple platforms and ensure there won't be any mix-ups in shipping.

You can outsource all kinds of logistic services, but it's up to you to choose which ones you need. The more you automate the process, the easier it will be for you, but you'll have to spend more money to keep it going. Hence, it's crucial to find a balance and not push it too far.

Stay Hands-On

Whether you're your only employee or have lots of workers and partner up with 3PL companies, you need to be involved in how your warehouse works. If you're hiring staff, be sure to train them so they know what they're doing. However, also learn your way around the tools they'll be using.

It's great when your business grows, but you constantly have to think one step ahead. When the time comes to scale up, you've got to be ready for it, but also, your eCommerce warehousing partners have to be able to keep up with you. Only that way your small business can evolve into a company that makes and keeps all its customers happy.

For over 30 years, 18 Wheels Logistics has strived to be the most customer-centric trucking, warehousing, and logistics company around. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 18 Wheels relies on experience and integrity to make customers happy and remain on the cutting edge of shipping and logistics management.

If you have any questions about this article or you would like to talk to us about your shipping needs, please call us at (604) 439-8938.

Michael Kotendzhi is President of Operations & Transportation and a partner at 18 Wheels. Michael has over 15 years of experience and is equipped with a degree in Logistics from the University of British Columbia Sauder School of Business. As well as a background in logistics from XPO Logistics (formally Kelron Logistics), North America's largest contract warehousing provider.

Michael's experience includes supply chain management, reverse logistics, & domestic transportation. He has developed 18 Wheels' trucking solutions, effectively utilizing the sister company's vehicle fleet and building a transportation supply-chain network across North America.