In the last few years, E-commerce businesses have exploded left, right and center. No matter which business niche you are looking at, there is probably a multi-billion-dollar E-commerce giant operating in it. Running a successful e-commerce business is not easy. It requires a ton of work, optimizations, and strategic planning.
While everyone thinks that E-commerce businesses are all about the website, social media presence, and SEO, there is more to it than meets the eye. Logistics optimizations, supply systems, inventory management, and warehouses play a major role.
All these help in improving the customer experience, easy and safe storage and transportation of goods, and fast delivery times. In this article, we discuss one critical aspect of an E-commerce business- warehouses. We list down some crucial ways how E-commerce businesses should choose a warehouse for their operations.
Questions to ask yourself before choosing a Warehouse for your E-commerce business
Before we get to the section on what you should look at before choosing a warehouse, you need to first ask yourself some important questions. These questions will help you figure out what kind of a warehouse will sit your E-commerce bill-
- What is the expansion strategy for your E-commerce business over the next three years?
- Are there any specific types of products that your E-commerce deals in (meat products)?
- Which are the major locations/regions/areas that you are looking to operate out of?
- How much labor do you require for the efficient movement of goods in the facility?
- What are some options that are open to you- leasing, renting, outright buying?
Once you can answer all the above questions, you will be in a much better position to decide the kind of warehouse your E-commerce business might require.
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Top 5 Tips to Help you Choose the Best Warehouse for your E-commerce Business
In this section, we are going to outline five major tips that can help you choose the right warehouse to help your E-commerce business grow and prosper-
- Work with a Trusted Expert-
A real estate broker that specializes in residential apartments might not be the best person to help you scout for warehouses. You need to work with experts that deal with industrial businesses, factories, factories, and offices. The best ones already have an idea about the specific nature of requirements that E-commerce businesses might have.
- Look for a Warehouse with designated Loading Bays-
E-commerce businesses need to ensure the fast movement of goods. This can only happen if the complex or facility has dedicated loading bays to haul goods to and fro the transportation and delivery vehicles. A lot of vendors will tell you that a makeshift ramp or ledge will do, but you should not go for such options. This is going to make a major difference to your performance.
- Opt for Strong Structures with good Ceiling and Roof Height-
Most goods get damaged specifically when they are being stored in warehouses. One major reason for the same becomes the elevation of the ceiling. The higher the elevation, the better will be the condition for the storage of the goods. Your workers too will feel comfortable and not get affected because of the humidity or extra-hot environment.
- Check for Proper Drainage and Fire Evacuations-
Businesses should look at two major things when choosing a warehouse. One is the drainage of the entire facility. This is because being a large structure, any problem of this sort can result in damages worth millions of dollars. Secondly, fire safety norms and exit points need to be strategically located to prevent any mishaps from happening in the facility-
- Pick Strategic Locations where you will be able to service a wide region-
You do not want to pick a warehouse at the end of city limits where your transportation costs will cost you dearly. You want to analyze and pick a location that is central enough to improve efficiency and lower the delivery costs. Also, you do not want your warehouse to be in allocation where heavy and commercial vehicles have designated entry and exit timings.
The Bottom Line
In this article, we have tried to shed some light on how E-commerce businesses can choose the best warehouse for their needs and requirements. Remember that the space will be helpful in storing products as well as the equipment that you might need in transportation. If you go through the contents of the article, you will be in a much better position to pick one that will help you scale your business and take it to the next level.
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