If you’re looking to optimize your product distribution and fulfillment services, you may want to consider a company that offers cross-docking services. There are many advantages to cross-docking that will save you money, simplify the shipping relationship, and decrease the risk of damaged product.
Difference between Cross-Docking and Traditional Warehousing
The goal of any shipping procedure is to deliver product from your business to a customer with the minimum amount of damage, cost, and time as possible. Both warehousing and cross-docking can help businesses achieve this goal.
Traditional warehousing and shipping procedures require a distributor with stocks of product on hand to deliver to customers. Cross-docking is the unloading of product directly from incoming transport onto outbound transport with little, if any, long-term storage in between.
A good third-party logistics (3PL) team will offer cross-docking to benefit your business and expedite the shipping process while continuing to provide traditional warehousing as needed.
Benefits of Cross-Docking Services
There are many benefits to cross-docking services over traditional warehousing procedures. Some of these include reduced costs, a simpler shipping relationship, a decreased risk of damaged product, time saved, and more.
Traditional warehousing can involve several parties including trucking or logistics partners and parcel delivery systems. Cross-docking eliminates the need for multiple business relationships by allowing one 3PL team to handle the warehousing and expedited shipping.
Any time you store inventory at your logistics partner’s warehouse, you are renting that space. Storage for lengthy periods of time can rack up an unpleasant cost.
Aside from cases when this is necessary, these costs are avoidable by shipping items directly from the order location to the destination.
Managed and Simplified Inventories
Cross-docking reduces the need to hold onto large volumes of stock as materials are quickly received and shipped. As a result, there are fewer labor hours requires to manage the inventory, less warehouse space needed, and the practice gives you an edge over business rivals.
You won’t be bogged down with volumes of inventory, which makes it easier for you to adapt and grow to meet the demands of your customers. Less stock piled up and taking up space in warehouses means reduced risk of accidental damage, injury, fire, or theft.
Decreased Risk of Damaged Product
Despite the increase of speed, cross-docking actually reduces the risk of damage to your products.
The risk is always increased when humans are involved, and the cross-docking process significantly reduces at least two steps where human error is possible: moving products into and out of storage.
Since cross-docking moves products from incoming trucks directly to outgoing trucks, it passes through the least amount of hands necessary to get the job done.
Reduced Shipping Times
One of the greatest benefits of a cross-docking system is the decreased time it takes to ship items.
Once an item is ordered, it is shipped, reaches the warehouse, and is moved carefully and efficiently from one truck to another to be shipped to your customer. Finding a dedicated logistics partner offering this service will help you reduce costs and shipping times, clear up your schedule, decrease risks to your products, and provide on-demand shipping.