Your web store front may be virtual, existing only in your website hosting provider’s cloud infrastructure, but the products you’re selling there most certainly exist in the phyical world. That means you’ll need to store them, inventory them, as well as ship and replenish them as you business grows. That’s where e-commerce fulfillment services become almost mandatory. E-commerce fulfillment services accept product shipments from you or your manufacturers, and then log them in, store them, pack them, and then send them out. They usually send them out via FedEx, UPS, USPS, or another shipping service.
Often called 3PLs (short for “third-party logistics”), e-commerce fulfillment services have been around for years, managing product distribution and fulfillment for large retail businesses and small mail-order companies. While the services covered here in this roundup provide the same services, they separate themselves from traditional 3PLs because of their concentration on providing fulfillment services for e-commerce retailers.