Wondering How to Scale Your Vitamins and Supplements Business?
If there was ever a time when the world needed vitamins and supplements, it’s the last couple of years. Remember the early days of the pandemic, when there was no vaccine in sight? Many of us resorted to shared information on the vitamins that could be relied upon to boost the immune system. And where did we go to buy them when all the shops were closed? To eCommerce businesses of course.
The eCommerce vitamins and supplements sector has been growing steadily over the past decade. Millennials and Centennials are generations that have grown up in a more health-conscious world. Most of them avoid excesses of alcohol, smoking or drugs and recognise the value of supplements to a healthy lifestyle. Then there’s the ageing population of people who are living longer and requiring more self-care.
The Impact of Rapid Growth on eCommerce Businesses
If you started a vitamins and supplements business before the pandemic, it’s likely that you’ll have seen accelerated growth over the past two years and are only now able to take stock. Many of the businesses we speak to tell us about the very rapid decisions they had to make when their steady sales started going through the roof.
The trigger for engaging initially with an order fulfilment company tends to be when a rapidly growing eCommerce business can no longer handle the number of orders they’re receiving. Once there’s a concern about maintaining both the stock inventory and customer service, rapid solutions have to be found.
The Difference Between Growth & Scaling
Traditional growth refers to an increase of revenue, which is accompanied by additional resources to manage it. So, vitamins and supplements eCommerce businesses have seen a growth in revenue, which has required an increase of resources to maintain their level of customer service. This is the supply and demand equation.
Scaling describes an alternative approach by which businesses achieve managed growth without being hindered by increasing costs. When an eCommerce business is able to increase its revenue without substantial costs to produce it, scaling has been achieved.
Are You Ready to Scale?
The order fulfilment company that provides a solution in a period of rapid growth may not be the right partner for scaling up your business. If you’re looking for more than basic fulfilment, without having to add more resources to grow your brand, maybe it’s a different kind of fulfilment company that you need.
A 3PL (Third-Party Logistics) company does everything a fulfilment company does (storage, inventory, pick & pack, shipping). Additionally, it works with businesses to facilitate better transportation and supply chain efficiency. The desired outcome of this partnership is enhanced customer service, time efficiencies, and ongoing optimisation which means that growth is baked in.
5 Benefits 3PL Partners Offer to Businesses Ready to Scale
A 3PL partner will utilise their experience and infrastructure to help your business to scale successfully.
1. Continuous optimisation
3PLs analyse your current operations and supply chain and recommend modifications to close gaps and solve inconsistencies. They will also find any potential for cost savings such as culling unnecessary processes, or making packaging improvements.
2. Cost Savings
The ambition of 3PL partners is to maximise value and minimise cost. They can help, for example, to reduce the number of returns, manage those returns efficiently, and provide data to further minimise return items.
3. Time Efficiency
Desperate to get back to what you’re good at? 3PLs save businesses the time they would otherwise spend on managing their supply chain. Additionally, the tech solutions offered by a 3PL save time by automating processes and minimising errors.
4. Carrier Network
A 3PL offers you access to a network of carriers that can be relied upon to manage your orders efficiently and provide end-to-end tracking of orders so that any problems can be dealt with instantly.
5. Experienced Account Management
Scaling has no end point, rather it’s an ongoing conversation, and this is provided by an account manager with industry knowledge and insights. They are able to offer supply chain recommendations, problem-solving and innovative options as they emerge.
Choosing Your 3PL Partner
If you’re thinking that you need a 3PL partner in order to scale your vitamins and supplements business, Prolog is here to help. We are an established fulfilment company, with an impressive 3PL operation for small businesses that want to grow without endlessly increasing their costs.
We specialise in optimised warehousing, picking and packing, shipping and returns for businesses focused on health and nutrition. If you’re looking for a 3PL partner that has the experience and expertise to help you grow efficiently and successfully, we’d love to talk to you.