Whether large or small, new or experienced, it may seem daunting to switch 3PLs. It may feel like a big leap to make, especially since fulfillment and logistics are key factors to customer satisfaction and sales volume growth. Finding the right 3PL for your brand is imperative and making the switch should improve your growth.
DCL customer Arccos Golf, developer of golf’s first Artificial Intelligence platform, needed more visibility of their orders, and a closer relationship with their 3PL team. VP of Sales at Arccos, Andrew Turner says, “Once we’d made a decision to switch, it was easy to do it.”
Arccos Caddie captures thousands of data points during every round of play, and provides unequaled insights to help golfers of any skill level, improve faster than ever. They have a high value product, and when shopping around for logistics support, they felt confident DCL could give them what they needed based on the companies DCL has worked with in the past. On switching 3PLs, Andrew says, “don’t get me wrong, we had a fine system, the cost was okay and it functioned appropriately. But I think we’d evolved and needed more visibility and agility.”
Like a Glove—Finding a 3PL that Fits
Finding the right 3PL to fit your company’s needs is imperative. Ultimately a 3PL should be your fulfillment expert, the trusted customer service aspect of your supply chain, and an extension of your team. There are many different types of 3PLs and it’s in your best interest to find a 3PL that has a specialty that fits your brand.
Andrew notes that while doing research on various 3PLs, “one thing that jumped out at us was the consumer electronics products that DCL ships. It was important to know that there’s a business that could do a similar product or ship it out in a similar way that we wanted ours shipped out.”
DCL has a proven track record of shipping high value products, for growing brands, and managing their returns process as well. All of this appealed to Andrew and the Arccos team.
“DCL’s experience helped inform our decision making. It gave me confidence that DCL has worked with similar products, but also that the account managers are willing to share best practices in the industry. Knowing that you’ve got a 3PL that can process the deliveries and understand the returns process—all of that and also give guidance is helpful.”
How eFactory Makes Distributed Inventory Simple
There are numerous reasons to pursue a distributed inventory strategy. General growth is probably the most common, and regional specificity is another big contender. Andrew reflects, “Arccos is a nationwide direct-to-consumer business—having multiple fulfillment centers, close to the customers, is really important. In the golf business we look at California, Florida, and those southern states as really important. So being able to ship something quickly and efficiently to all of those places is key for us.”
eFactory has helped the Arccos team make the switch to distributed inventory simple. Andrew explains, “eFactory has been great to figure out how much inventory we should ship to Kentucky and how much we should leave in Ontario, to fulfill demands. DCL has the fulfillment side taken care of, the only thing we will need to keep an eye on is inventory levels. I like the emailed reports that get sent out. That’s quite nice to know what inventory is on hand. The reporting in DCL, that’s important for us.”
Especially for a team doing distributed inventory for the first time, being able to see real-time data through this one singular platform is extremely important. Andrew says, “When you go to eFactory, you can see all the states that you’re shipping to, the volume of shipping. It’s quite visual. It’s useful to understand where our shipments are going. It just allows you to think about all of things—do I need to offer air shipping, do I need to do two day, one day—down to that granular level of detail.”
Service and Responsiveness—The Ultimate Growth Factor
The account managers at DCL maintain a high level of responsiveness for all our customers. Service is a pillar of DCL’s values, and it’s a key part of supporting customer’s growth into new sales channels.
Andrew notes, “One thing that has been useful is having somebody at DCL who can walk you through all the set up and process, someone who is patient enough to take time to explain things. I mean, we’re not software engineers and we’re not technical people, and I think that is one of the barriers to changing 3PLs: people are nervous about all the terminology and the language and API keys and things. But DCL’s EDI integration was very straightforward.”
DCL has decades of experience connecting to larger retailers—it’s very easy to get customers into new sales channels because DCL has already figured out the process to do that. Arccos recently launched on Amazon, and Andrew notes, “The EDI setup is going to save a lot of time. Just clicking one button instead of manually copying orders all across is going to save a lot of effort. It’s helpful because small businesses don’t have a logistics specialist—sometimes you need the help of a larger company who’s done it multiple times to tell you where to look for the right information, provide that right data so that you can integrate the right things. Being able to call up and ask ‘Can we sort out these Amazon orders?’—and the answer from our account manager is ‘No problem, taken care of, it’s done.’ I think that responsiveness is important, especially since we’re doing a lot of direct to consumer business—that responsiveness is really important.”
Ultimately Andrew and his team were looking for a true partner, and they found the right fit with DCL. He says, “We are by no means a big customer of DCL’s but being treated like a big customer for a small company is useful. It makes you feel looked after. That’s one thing that resonated. And it still does.”
More About Arccos
Arccos Golf, LLC develops game-changing connected golf products. The company is revolutionizing the golfing experience by integrating automatic shot tracking with Artificial Intelligence to deliver unparalleled insights that help players maximize their potential. Arccos Golf has more than 300,000 registered users and has recorded over 200 million shots by users in over 100 countries around the world.
If you are looking for fulfillment and logistics support, or have questions about how to partner with DCL Logistics please contact us here.