Distributing company goods can be a challenge or an obstacle to success and growth. In-house distribution services call to sell and deliver its product itself, using its own warehouse and staff. Distributing product directly can cut costs because profit doesn’t have to be provided for intermediaries such as wholesalers, retailers or 3PL Third Party Logistics companies specializing in product distribution services. However, warehouse space is expensive and hiring, training and managing a staff of distribution experts can be very difficult and costly. Not having to purchase and maintain equipment such as forklifts and/or warehouse management systems alone may make sense.
So what to do? Why outsource Distribution Services? It is important to understand a company’s business standards and core competency. Are they in the business of providing a product to a client or are they in the business of distributing it? Are they an expert in both or just one? If an expert in just one and not the other “which is highly likely” then read on.
Whether a company manufactures or imports products will determine the location of the warehouse or distribution center. As a manufacturer, it is important that the distance between the company’s plant be relatively close to the facility in which it is stored. As an importer, the proximity of the storage facility to a company headquarters is less important. What is more important is its proximity to their customer. For instance, if a company’s product is needed exclusively in Florida, it would make sense to distribute the product from Florida. However, in the more likely scenario that a company’s product is distributed nationwide, a central distribution center in the Midwest makes the most sense.
Partnering with the right 3PL to provide Distribution Services means finding the right company with the experience, knowledge and manpower to accommodate a company’s needs today as well as in the future as the organization grows and its needs mature.
FW Warehousing is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri with Midwest warehouse distribution centers in Kansas City, Indianapolis and St. Louis totaling more than four million square feet. Founded in 1949 with a focus on food-grade storage, FW later broadened its services to include contract warehousing, dry storage, hazardous material and chemical storage, temperature-controlled storage, product distribution and B2B and B2C fulfillment.
FW Warehousing has more than 50 years of experience in third-party 3PL logistics and has been ranked in the top 100 Third Party Logistic Companies in the country by Inbound Logistics magazine.