3 Best Shipping Software & Buyers Guide
Online postage service Enables small businesses enterprises retailers to print US Postal Service-approved postage Print right from home/office shipping label
Economical shipping software Streamline shipping pipeline Integrate with Global Shipping Carriers Choose best shipping options Calculate & compare shipping cost
Multichannel order fulfillment & inventory management solution Enables achieving scalable growth Marketing & selling products, Well handle rest of import orders
Shipping software is a system that provides an automated managing and tracking freight delivery system. Shipping software can allow freight delivery companies, 3PLs, international import/export companies, and businesses doing outbound shipping via multiple carriers.
Shipping software has management programming for many shipment tracking, freight forwarding, customs paperwork management, billing, quote generation, scheduling, and logistics functions. Shipping software is integrated to transportation management software, supply chain management software, distribution software, fleet management software, logistics software, and warehouse management software, to make the whole thing work in coordination with each other.
Shipping is the physical movement of goods from one place to another, like the moving of merchandise from the warehouse to the customer. The shipping process follows the manufacture and the packing of products and is controlled by a shipping or logistics company.
When starting an e-commerce business, cut costs by handling the shipping yourself. However, as the company achieves newer heights, it will no longer be able to handle the transportation of goods on own. For this, the company will employ a shipping and logistics company.
Shipping can take several forms depending on the distance covered and the speed of delivery necessary. The cost-effective shipping is ground transportation, but it is also the slowest one. Basic discounted ground shipping could take up to 10 days or longer at peak holiday shipping times. For quick deliveries, air freight is always recommended. However, this is much expensive. In the case of international shipments, transportation can be sent via ocean shipping. It is very cost-effective but again also extremely slow, taking up to 6 weeks, maybe longer in some cases. While air freight gets around this, international air freight can also be costly.
Shipping costs tend to decline with larger volumes. While a single package may cost $5 to ship, you could see a massive discount if you were shipping 100 packages. Companies like Amazon can offer free shipping to select customers because of the enormous shipping volumes and the discounts they enjoy. E-commerce retailers always required to understand the costs of shipping and how the price will be added to costing or goes to customers.
Benefits of Shipping Software
Increases transit transparency: Get to know the product position at each step of the logistics process with tracking statuses for items and shipments. With the information available to business, not only can user address roadblocks efficiently, but the user can also share the tracking updates with an existing client.
Access decreased shipping prices with 3PLS: The reduced shipping rates with 3PLs— that software vendors have already negotiated. They will extend the costs to their customers using the software, providing you to get decreased shipping rates without having to settle on their own.
Create accurate shipping labels and customs paperwork: Utilize label templates, create the business logo, and automatically generate required paperwork as needed within the software. This decreases faults of manual entry and streamlines the logistics hand-offs at each touchpoint in the process.
Features of Shipping Software
Inventory management: Track individual product stock levels and locations to increase the speed to fulfilment and get the product out the door quicker.
Shipment price calculation: Comparing and selecting the best carrier rates in real-time for individual or bulk shipments. Most sellers already work with the top 3PLs.
Shipment tracking: Create shipment tracking numbers and monitoring orders. You can also offer the customer with the tracking number.
Bills of lading: Generating bills of lading or shipping labels for bulk batches. The software will offer standardized paperwork with accurate information for you.
Drop-shipping: Decrease warehouse prices by shipping product directly from the manufacturer or another seller.
Import/export: Increase international processes of importing and exporting goods by tracking landing prices, customs paperwork, and delivery times.
Cost of Shipping Software
Many products available in the market are priced every month for an unlimited number of users or by shipping volume. The lowered pricing ranges are for per user per month only pricing as stated on vendor websites. The rating can be divided into three pricing tiers based on their starting price. A premium product that is priced higher may include additional features, like drop-shipping, inventory management, and a seller portal.
Considerations while buying Shipping Software
Comparison between shipping software to a full-suite supply chain management system. Review the business model and requires to make sure the features you need are all included in the shipping software. If you own other stages of the supply chain process, such as manufacturing or warehousing, you may require a full-fledged suite of applications in a supply chain management system.
Integration requires with other systems. The shipping business is likely already using another software program like inventory management, accounting, or an ERP. The shipping software you choose might require to integrate with these tools. Talk to the software vendor about their costs and capabilities to coordinate with the specific software you already have.
Potential hidden costs. Access the total pricing of ownership for the new shipping software, beyond just the monthly or annual licensing charges. All these include charges for data migration, training, and upgrade fees. The software seller should help you to calculate all costs, including the upfront and ongoing—or potentially hidden—ones.
Shipping Software Trends
Drop-shipping reduces inventory costs and meets new customer demands. As online shopping continues to grow, retailers now can sell to customers regardless of location. A drop shipping, a supply chain management method of the manufacturer or other warehouse location ships out the product, is a lowly rated and low-risk way to expand and demand.
Geo-fencing improves shipping automation. By making customized maps for logistics plans, user can set automated workflows that can align warehouse or retail locations if a pizza place uses a 5-mile radius from their store to dictate where delivery is available. But the store is near the town lake and hence half the delivery area is just water. Not so helpful. With geo-fencing, the pizza place can ignore issues like this.
3PL partnerships between retailer to transportation combo. McDonald’s and Ford’s new company has been in the news recently. The Banana Republic and Postmates is another unexpected one. It might be time to think outside of the industry-specific partners and see who has an already established logistics network in the area of require to expand quickly and meet customer demands for fast delivery.