In today’s logistics industry, there are two distinct types of distribution: B2B and B2C.
- Business-to-Business (B2B) distribution occurs between one business to another. In some cases a B2B is often referred to as a B2R (Business-to-Retailer).
- Business-to-Consumer (B2C) is a transaction between a business and the end consumer.
Both B2B and B2C fulfillment is determined by what type of customer base you have and the specific needs of those customers.
As a 3PL fulfillment company, IronLink’s distribution strategy experts can help your business meet the needs of both B2B and B2C distribution channels. IronLink can handle all of your 3PL needs and work with you to customize a distribution solution, Our numerous logistics services can optimize your business, freeing you up to focus on more important aspects of your business. Work with IronLink to establish supply chain technological plans, logistics, and shipping solutions that you desire.
B2B and B2C Fulfillment Process
The B2B and B2C fulfillment process has several distinct variations that a 3PL fulfillment company can help you navigate. In the B2B process, the quantities being shipped are typically larger or in bulk and can require routing in order to be received. Routing is a process that controls the receiving of these large orders and can be difficult to manage without experience. A professional 3PL will have experts who specialize in this process and can ensure that the particular retailers’ order specifications (pallets size, labels, etc.) are followed to reduce the risk of chargebacks.
These types of orders can also require port transport services, LTL (less than a truck load), or FTL (Full truck load) transportation services. B2C fulfillment process involves greater numbers of orders in smaller quantities, unlike its B2B counterpart. Some manufacturers or sellers offer B2C fulfillment if their end user is a business, but for the most part B2C references a direct shipment from the warehouse to the customer and cuts out the retailer middle man. These orders typically go out via small parcel shipping such as FedEx, UPS, USPS, etc.
E-Commerce distribution is sweeping through the marketing landscape. It has emerged as a viable distribution channel, mainly for B2C transactions due to the integrations available for pushing orders directly from the online marketplace to the warehouse. As logistics technology continues to evolve, more consumers and businesses utilize online services to sell their products.
E-Commerce eliminates the need for interpersonal interactions and opens the doors for many businesses to get their products out to a global marketplace. Although E-Commerce can be challenging, it can present excellent opportunities to grow your business when setup properly. Partnering with an eCommerce distribution center can help you customize logistics solutions to get your products in the right hands, faster.
“Big Box” Distribution
“Big Box” distribution is experiencing massive growth as a result of the booming E-Commerce industry. This distribution method is mainly used for B2B transactions and can present businesses with exponential growth and great success. Big Box distribution centers can thrust your brand into new markets and ensure success in increasing the volume of your sales in a sheer numbers game.
What Are the Differences Between Warehouses & Distribution Centers?
Warehouses and distribution centers are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same. The four specific differences between the warehouse and the distribution center are:
- Storage management. Commercial warehouse storage, in a traditional sense, is utilized for long-term inventory storage. This is where items are stockpiled and shelved as inventory. The distribution center function as warehouses with fulfillment services. A distribution facility is usually meant for short-term storage until orders get fulfilled and shipped to another destination.
- Customer-oriented processes. Warehouses simply provide storage space and do not necessarily offer additional services to clients. Distribution centers offer services in receiving, shipping, managing returns and client support. In addition, the best distribution centers will offer third party warehouse services such as repackaging services, kitting, assembly services and more. As a B2B packaging company, IronLink provides value added services such as pick and pack service to B2B and B2C customers.
- Shipping systems. Warehouses usually do not offer shipping services; however, 3PL distribution centers work closely with shipping carriers.
- Internal processes. Warehouses normally do not offer any type of in-house processes other than simply storage. In a distribution center, 3PL companies utilize the most advanced technologies in warehouse management systems to fulfill and ship orders.
In summary, there are important distinctions between warehouses and distribution centers. Fortunately, IronLink is a distribution, warehousing & logistics service provider which means our commercial warehouses are built to also handle your business’s 3PL distribution needs. To discuss your short- and long-term storage needs and goods distribution, call IronLink.
Grow Your Business with Optimized Distribution
Building your business in today’s markets can be challenging and complicated, so in order to thrive it is essential to optimize your distribution strategy. Whether it is B2B or B2C, a distribution strategy is how your business gets your products and/or services to your customers and consumers.
As part of the distribution channel, you will need to figure out the logistics of offloading, sorting, and shipping your products. A 3PL vendor can save you valuable time and money while optimizing your distribution strategy. A solid strategy can ensure the success of your business by developing the following:
- Create genuine connections with customers.
- Build customer satisfaction and loyalty.
- Customers will become your brand advocates.
- Increase sales through customer acquisition and retention.
Utilizing IronLink as your 3PL company can help you establish a successful, optimized distribution strategy. Efficiently get your goods in the hands of your target markets seamlessly. Tell us about your warehouse and distribution center strategy, and we will create a customized 3PL plan.
Discuss Your Distribution Strategy with IronLink Logistics
IronLink Logistics 3PL services cover the East Coast and West Coast. Contact IronLink today at 833-214-0220 for your 3PL distribution or warehousing needs. Our “Big Box” and eCommerce distribution experts can help you develop a customized distribution strategy regardless of the size and volume of your product.
We are industry leaders in distribution strategies and warehouse management systems. Grow your business by partnering with the best in the 3PL space.