What is pick and pack fulfilment?

And how can it be the key to happy customers?

Picking and packing is a vital part of the order fulfilment process, and it goes a long way towards customer satisfaction. As an ecommerce business, you’re probably already aware that ecommerce fulfilment should aim to make customers feel appreciated and impressed by your service, and a perfect pick and method process is a great way to achieve this! Getting your product packaging and speed of delivery right can all contribute to helping your customers feel valued and appreciated.

So, what is actually involved in the picking and packing process, and why it is so vital in giving your customers the best experience possible? Read on to learn how you can make a difference with a perfect pick and pack service.

What does the picking and packing process involve and why is it important?

The pick and pack process can be thought of as an important cog in the wheel that keeps the e-fulfilment process moving. Technically, the act of picking and packing refers to picking all items from a customer’s order from a storage location and packing the item into the right packaging to be shipped.

Ecommerce companies responsible for their customers’ order fulfilment often streamline their picking and packing process with picking methods, such as batch picking, to ensure they aren’t wasting any time.

If you find you don’t have time to fulfil picking and packing duties internally, you may want to outsource a pick, pack and ship service. Find out more about choosing a pick and pack service here. 

One common picking method is single order picking, which is probably the most popular method. It requires an individual to pick a single customer order, as close to the order coming in and is dealt with one order at a time. This method is easy to employ, often ideal for smaller warehouses, but isn’t particularly time efficient.

Batch picking is another example of a method commonly used. It requires a worker to pick multiple orders with the same SKU at one time. While it still requires workers to choose items, it is more efficient than single order picking as it reduces travelling time between pick locations. This method is often used by warehouses with larger ecommerce activity.

Find out more about batch picking vs single order picking here. 

Though picking and packing may seem like a banal task, picking and packing fulfilment actually holds a lot more importance than simply efficiently packing the right products. It can even determine whether you make a good or bad impression on your customer. When it comes to presentation, an order should always be picked accurately and packed in a neat arrangement as this will bring about a good impression of your business. You may also want to provide the options of personalised packaging or packaging that is unique to your brand to further enhance your customers’ experience. Read on to find out more about this!

Customer wearing yellow top smiling lifting out jeans from a parcel

So, how does the picking and packing fulfilment process affect customer loyalty?

Reach out to modern-day customers with sustainable packaging

Modern-day consumers don’t only expect speedy delivery and excellent customer service. More and more customers are becoming passionate about sustainable packaging than ever before. Providing sustainable packaging can make the difference between a one-time order and a loyal, happy customer. A study by Unilever revealed that a third of consumers prefer sustainable brands. More than one in five (21%) of the people surveyed also said they would actively choose brands if they made their sustainability credentials clearer on their packaging and in their marketing!

Sustainable packaging can also show corporate responsibility, and using eco-friendly packaging is a sure way to win over the modern-day consumer.

At Linney, sustainability, functionality and seasonality are always at the forefront of our designers’ minds, ensuring your product has maximum impact on the shelf with minimum impact on the planet and your budget.

Find out more about Linney’s innovative packaging here.

Get personal with your pick and pack process

You may want to provide the options of personalised packaging or packaging that is unique to your brand to further enhance your customers’ experience when receiving their orders. Unique or custom packaging can ensure customers feel valued and excited about receiving future orders. It can also help you build a personality for your brand and make the buying experience more personal to customers.

Person in a striped top putting label on a cardboard box

Accuracy is key

There is nothing more frustrating than receiving the wrong item from a business you put your trust in. Have you ever been excited about receiving a product only to find they have sent the completely wrong item? Needless to say, your faith in a brand can disappear. Of course, the pick and pack process is a key part of ensuring your customers get exactly what they ordered. Accuracy is key when it comes to pick and pack fulfilment, and you should ensure your warehouse picking and packing process is as good as it can be!

It’s all in the presentation

The presentation of an order can make or break customer loyalty. A neatly packed order can make customers feel valued and give a good impression of your business. Similarly, providing protective packaging for fragile products or discreet packaging where necessary can ensure your package meets customer expectations, helping you to maintain customer loyalty for future purchases.

Impress customers with efficiency

A speedy picking and packing process can speed up the shipping process, ensuring your customers get what they need faster, exceeding customer expectations. If they know they can count on a company each time for reliable product delivery that arrives on time, they’ll continue to order from your business. In fact, according to a study by Dotcom Distribution, 87% of online shoppers identified shipping speed as a key factor in the decision to shop with an ecommerce brand again.

Are you struggling for time? Get help from an e-fulfilment service

To make things slightly easier, many ecommerce companies are starting to outsource their picking and packing to third party logistics (3PL) companies, who know exactly how to make this process run smoothly. Some fulfilment service providers will offer more than just the basics, which can be helpful for growing ecommerce businesses that may require help to scale their operations in the future.  Many of the companies that offer fulfilment services are also experts in other areas of the supply chain and could help you with many aspects of your business. It will make things a lot easier if you can do all your outsourcing with one company.

At Linney, we understand that as an ecommerce business, delighting your customers is the end goal. Getting your products to your customers efficiently and exceeding their expectations is a key part of maintaining loyal and happy customers. That’s why we provide much more than just warehousing and stock management. We offer a variety of services to help your ecommerce fulfilment process go smoothly – from managed ecommerce services to order fulfilment services. To find out more about how we can help you provide your customers with the best service possible, read about the services we offer, or contact us here.