Learn how mid-sized businesses can overcome shipping challenges and streamline operations with MCSS
From the consumers’ point of view, the process of making an online purchase to receiving the package at their doorstep may seem generally straightforward. They put items into their cart, enter their payment information, confirm their delivery address, and boom! A few days later, the products they were once admiring on their screen are now in their own hands.
However, in the evolving landscape of modern commerce, what goes on behind the scenes throughout the shipping process is far more complex than it may appear – especially for mid-sized business. Mid-sized businesses occupy a large space in the world of supply chain, as 99.9% of businesses across the US are small to mid-sized enterprises (SMEs). While they’re (generally) large enough to handle substantial shipping volumes, they often lack the extensive resources and infrastructure of their larger or enterprise business counterparts.
Consequently, these mid-sized enterprises grapple with several shipping challenges such as high shipping costs, inefficient processes, and limited carrier options that can impact their operations and customer satisfaction, hindering growth and profitability. But fear not – there is a solution to overcome these shipping woes: multi-carrier shipping software (MCSS). This parcel shipping technology offers mid-sized businesses an opportunity to navigate the intricate world of shipping and optimize their operations to full potential.
Wave Goodbye to High Shipping Costs
Especially for small to mid-sized businesses, budgeting for the upcoming year of shipping can be stressful and leave little to no wiggle room in their supply chain budget. Inflation, economic uncertainty, and labor concerns have all contributed to the issue as well. In 2022, we saw gasoline prices at nearly $1.80 more per gallon than in 2020, and are currently still experiencing high gas prices as we’re nearing the end of 2023. Mid-sized shippers feel the effects of these obstacles in their supply chain budget – and are left to deal with high shipping and transportation costs as a result.
Multi-carrier shipping software does a great job of facing this challenge head on using features like rate shopping and the innate ability to scale as needs change.
MCSS can automate the rate shopping process, selecting the best carrier and service level available in real time based on a set of predefined rules and criteria unique to each business and their parameters. This feature helps shippers identify the most cost-effective shipping option for each shipment, considering factors like package size, weight, destination, and delivery time.
This feature of MCSS is a significant cost saver for businesses, especially small to medium-sized enterprises who have ample room to grow. As your business grows and develops, the cost of your shipping software doesn’t have to. That’s because top-tier multi-carrier shipping software possesses flexibility that allows it to scale with your business and adapt as your needs change without the additional and frequent upgrade costs that accompany other shipping software.
Give Your Inefficient Shipping Process a Makeover
With all the steps that go into the shipping process, from order placement to dispatching packages, it is not surprising that logistics operations can easily become quite complex. Where there is complexity, there is the opportunity for inefficiencies, such as manual tasks and managing several separate systems, to creep in, threatening to disrupt the flow of operations. Operational inefficiency is a challenge that can negatively impact many mid-sized businesses who may not have the resources to bounce back from its potentially harmful effects.
Multi-carrier shipping software can help transform inefficient shipping processes into a streamlined and precise operation.
Automation of Manual Tasks
MCSS automates several manual tasks involved in the shipping process including label generation, order tracking, and more. This automation significantly reduces the risk of errors, speeds up order processing, and enhances customer communication. Most importantly, it ultimately improves the operational efficiency for mid-sized businesses and allows for manual work to be allocated to a more beneficial area.
Centralized Shipping Management
Instead of relying on homegrown shipping systems or dedicating time and effort into juggling multiple carrier systems or spreadsheets, MCSS provides shippers with a centralized platform to manage their shipping activities in one single place. This streamlines the shipping process and allows for greater visibility and control over shipping operations, relieving some of the pressure mid-sized businesses face.
Integration with ERP and WMS Systems
Multi-carrier shipping software can seamlessly integrate with a business’s existing Enterprise Software Stack, specifically essential supply chain technology like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software or Warehouse Management Systems (WMS). This integration allows for data to automatically synchronize and flow between systems, better coordinate between shipping and inventory management, and stay up to date on the order fulfillment process and data management.
Level Up Limited Carrier Options
The exponential increase in e-commerce over the past few years came paired with a significant increase in customer expectations surrounding deliveries. Today, customers want their items delivered in a timely manner at a low cost. In fact, a recent survey on shipping and delivery satisfaction found that free shipping was the most important factor among 82% of the respondents. Because of this, relying on a single carrier no longer upholds increased demands and expectations.
Fortunately for mid-sized businesses, multi-carrier shipping software counteracts this challenge by widening the availability and opportunity for more delivery options.
Access to Multiple Carriers
Multi-carrier shipping software integrates with a vast library of carriers (hence the name) that each have their own unique features. These carriers can range from major international carriers, regional carriers, or even local specialized carriers. Providing a broad network of diverse carriers for shippers to choose from allows them to increase geographical coverage, meet the unique needs of their customers, and offers increased flexibility in their delivery services. While some mid-sized businesses are single carrier shippers, those who wish to best manage their shipping costs employ a carrier diversification strategy to maintain access to a library of different carriers to find the most cost-effective shipping rate.
Diverse Service Levels
With a wide network of available carriers to choose from comes access to a range of service levels. These service levels can range from ground, express, next-day, same-day, and international. This capability of MCSS ensures that businesses can match the right service to the specific needs of each individual shipment.
Overcome Shipping Challenges with WorldLink Multi-Carrier Shipping Software
The shipping industry is full of challenges, volatility, and unexpected circumstances. However, it is important to take away that even mid-sized businesses can utilize a solution like multi-carrier shipping software to face challenges such as high shipping costs, inefficiency, and limited carrier options – all while remaining competitive with their larger business counterparts. WorldLink’s industry leading multi-carrier shipping software offers flexibility, speed, and control that will provide your business with significant operational value, cost savings, and overall success.
At WorldLink, we acknowledge the surging demand and understand the importance of upholding your shipment commitments. WorldLink’s automated multi-carrier shipping software is designed to optimize your supply chain, elevate your customer experience, and boost your efficiency, especially as we approach the busiest times of the year. Learn more about how WorldLink can help you overcome your shipping challenges and schedule a demo today.