Autofulfil eCommerce Fulfillment FAQs
What is eCommerce order fulfillment?
eCommerce order fulfillment are the steps involved in packaging and delivering online product orders to end customers.
What is a 3PL?
In logistics and supply chain management, 3PL (which stands for third-party logistics) is an organisation’s use of third-party businesses to outsource elements of its distribution, warehousing, and fulfillment services. Autofulfil is a 3PL provider in Ireland.
What is a fulfillment centre?
A fulfillment centre is a facility where order fulfillment services occur, including inventory storage, and picking, packing, and shipping orders. A fulfillment centre is different than a standard warehouse, because it does more than simply store items.
What does pick and pack mean?
Pick and pack is a type of order fulfillment used most often by eCommerce retailers that receive small orders that are shipped around the globe. Rather than preparing and shipping entire cases and pallets of goods, eCommerce retailers rely on workers who pick individual items from master cartons on warehouse shelves and then pack them in boxes or envelopes addressed to specific customers for shipment.
What is a warehouse management system?
What is a SKU?
What is a barcode and do my products need them?
A barcode is a method of representing data in a visual, machine-readable form. Typically, barcodes represent data with varying the widths and spacings of parallel lines on a sticker or label applied to an item. We require barcodes on all of the items we stock in our inventory so we can automatically scan each item when we pick, pack, and ship it. This ensures order fulfillment accuracy. If you don’t currently have barcodes on your products, your supplier can usually easily add these for you.
Onboarding & Integration
How long does it take to get set up and start fulfilling orders with Autofulfil?
How does the eCommerce platform integration process work?
First, you’ll be introduced to our client experience team, who will manage your platform integration. Next, we’ll need you to fill in our onboarding documents, which will include a list of your SKUs from your eCommerce platform. Then, we’ll map all of your product SKUs from your platform to our Warehouse Management System within one business day of receiving the completed onboarding documentation. From there, we just need to schedule your inventory delivery to receive your stock and train you on how to use our web portal, so you can begin fulfilling orders with Autofulfil.
What information is pushed and pulled between the eCommerce store and the warehouse management system with the system integration?
What if I don’t use one of the eCommerce platforms Autofulfil is integrated with?
When is the customer service team available to provide support?
How long does it take for customer service to respond to support requests?
Generally, our customer service team strives to reply to all support requests within one business day, however, we utilise a prioritisation process so that certain high-urgency requests are handled within less than an hour as needed. You’ll never be waiting long for a reply.
Inventory & Storage
How long does it take for goods to be received and added into the warehouse management system inventory?
Do my products need to have barcodes?
What are Autofulfil’s warehouse security measures to maintain my inventory?
What are the cutoff times for same-day order fulfillment?
What is the difference between kitting and assembly?
Kitting is a process of bundling two or more related products into a new, single-packaged product SKU. Kitting is done prior to orders being received and the new, prepackaged bundles are kept in inventory ready to ship. Kitting generally costs less and is best for product bundles you know you have demand for and will sell, since the individual products are no longer in stock as individual SKUs once they’ve become part of a kit.
Assembly is a post-order process, where products are bundled into a single packaged product after an order is received. Assembly costs a bit more than kitting, however, it provides more inventory flexibility for new product bundles that don’t have much demand yet or future product order combinations using the individual product SKUs in stock.
Kitting and assembly are addressed here for more information.
What kinds of custom services does Autofulfil offer?
From special projects to custom packaging, we offer flexible customisation options and can partner with you to provide innovative fulfillment solutions to meet any need. Some of our custom/bespoke fulfillment solutions include:
- Promotional inserts
- Thank you cards
- Gift sets and gift baskets
- Special packaging and wrapping, such as putting items into bags and branded boxes, adding tissue paper, tying ribbons and bows, or any other special packaging required for a special unboxing experience.
- Corporate gifting
- High-touchpoint, hands-on projects
- Product assembly and rework, such as adding stickers and labels for different countries, etc.
- Garment steaming
- And more!
Shipping and Delivery
Which shipping carriers does Autofulfil work with?
Autofulfil has close partnerships and high-volume discount rates with the top local and global shipping carriers, including An Post, DPD, UPS, and Fastway.
How long does it take to deliver orders to my customers?
- With our network of shipping partners, we’re able to offer either premium, rapid delivery or lower-cost, economy delivery options based on what your customers prefer. We will work with you to establish your preferred shipping and delivery methods.
- All orders received before 3pm GMT Monday through Friday are picked, packed, and shipped the same day.
- Next-day delivery is available across all of Ireland.
- 2-4 business day delivery is available throughout the EU.
- Delivery from our warehouse in Ireland to the UK can take 3-10 business days due to Brexit-related customs delays.
- Worldwide delivery lead times are 5-15 days, depending on the region.
How does Autofulfil handle my customer returns?
- Our returns process is custom-tailored to the unique returns policies of each of our clients.
- We send a packing slip that includes a returns form out with each order we fulfill that can be used by your customers to process returns according to your returns policy.
- You work with your client to generate a return shipping label, and the product is returned by the customer to our warehouse with the returns form included in the package.
- All returns we receive that include a returns form are processed within one business day.
- You may choose to set predetermined criteria for returns inspections, and when we should return your products back into stock, ship them back to you, or dispose of them. We can also share reference photos so you can decide what to do with each return on a case-by-case basis.
- We can even offer custom services for returns restocking, such as cleaning, steaming, folding, repackaging, etc. if needed to ensure your returned products are sales-ready again.
How sustainable are Autofulfil’s fulfillment services?
- Autofulfil has implemented several sustainability initiatives to provide environmentally friendly, carbon neutral fulfillment and shipping.
- Our packaging includes recyclable and biodegradable paper-based packaging, void fill, and tape sourced via sustainable forest management practices (Forest Stewardship Council certified).
- Our fulfillment centre is powered by motion-activated lights to reduce electricity waste.
- We provide carbon-neutral fulfillment and carbon-neutral shipping via tree-planting and sustainable farming training to offset the carbon footprint of each order we fulfill and feed communities in the process.
How does Autofulfil bill for services?
- We send you an invoice the first week of every month and require payment within (5) days of invoice receipt.
- Your invoice will include the following charges:
- Pickable storage – per pallet/bay stored, per month
- Inventory receiving – per pallet received
- Maintenance Fee – per month
- Pick and pack – per SKUs picked per order
- Kitting and Assembly – per touchpoint
- Packaging – per package
- Shipping – per shipment
Want to learn more?
Request a quote today and a fulfillment expert will contact you to answer your questions and provide you with a custom quote tailored to your unique business needs.