Consumer and market trends
Consumer and market trends

3PLs: A one-stop solution for brand building

In the last couple of years, the e-commerce sector has grown rapidly. e-commerce brands are becoming increasingly conscious about building strong brand visibility.

On February 1, 2023

In the last couple of years, the e-commerce sector has grown rapidly. Going by the statistics, the global e-commerce market is expected to grow at a CAGR of around 27.4 per cent between 2022-2027 to reach USD 55.6 Trillion in 2027. While these are just estimates, the market is poised for exponential growth. Rapid internet penetration and smartphones have given customers easy access to shop online from any part of the world and get it delivered to any desired location. The online shopping trend accelerated during the pandemic. Even the not-so-digitally-savvy customers shifted to online shopping platforms primarily due to the convenience it offers of getting deliveries right to the doorstep. Considering the massive opportunities that the e-commerce business offers, several new players entered the market offering unique services to consumers to ensure a seamless and hassle-free customer experience.

Changing e-commerce strategies

Considering the rising competition, e-commerce brands are becoming increasingly conscious about building strong brand visibility. They have, today, realised that a direct-to-consumer (DTC) approach helps to future-proof their businesses. Companies are, thus, exploring diverse omnichannel ecosystems to reach global customers at scale by entering into strategic partnerships for brand marketing, building trust, and delivering unique customer experiences.

Leveraging the expertise of 3PLs

Third-party logistics players have always played an instrumental role in the overall growth of the e-commerce sector. By the nature of their business, 3PLs have been known for maximising a brand’s value and minimising its costs by coordinating the entire supply chain, incorporating expert logistics services and even adding value to their products. Here’s how an end-to-end logistics solutions provider can help retailers in building brand trust.  

Seamless transition from one channel to another

Customer preferences and behaviours have evolved especially after the Covid-19 pandemic. Today, consumers want to interact with brands through both online and offline modes. This has driven online and in-store shopping integration. Partnering with a 3PL that has an omnichannel platform, will help retailers to shorten click-to-customer cycle time and allow seamless transition across web, social, and mobile platforms in addition to the physical stores.

Inventory management

In e-commerce, customers tend to choose brands which give them clear visibility of the products that they are looking for. Thus, keeping inventories organised is critical as goods need to be available and shipped on time. 3PLs provide companies with a digital inventory management system which facilitates real-time inventory monitoring. This helps in making informed decisions based on data, analytics and business insights.

Tracking & tracing

One of the key aspects in building brand loyalty is the ability of retailers to provide complete visibility about the movement of the products to its customers. Once an order is placed, customers want to know where their product has reached and by when it will be delivered. Through delivery management tools that offer features such as route planning, task allocation, vehicle tracking, etc., 3PLs can help companies to deliver goods on time and improve customer experience.

On-time delivery

Another critical aspect of the success of an e-commerce brand is its ability to fulfil its commitment to delivery. Timely delivery helps in building brand trust and loyalty. 3PLs having a presence across multiple pin codes with a strong delivery infrastructure in place helps in building trust and loyalty through their capabilities of on-time delivery.

Reverse logistics

Given that almost 30 per cent of e-commerce transactions are generally returned, brand loyalty and trustworthiness are judged by the way the firm addresses the grievances of its customers. Retailers thus need to focus on building a robust mechanism to ensure the return and refund processes are seamless and hassle-free. By using intelligent smart checks and open box delivery mechanism, 3PL players can ensure that the product return process becomes hassle-free not only for the customers but also for the retailers as it ensures that the product travels the entire return supply chain and passes through the right packing and right storage protocols and ultimately reaches the right seller.

Easy payment 

Consumers are seeking flexibility in payment options when shopping online. Brands that offer multiple payment gateways, generally, garner a good response. Today, an increasing number of merchants, banks, and payment providers are offering their customers the option of paying for their purchases at a future date. 3PLs, through their built-in partnership ecosystem, offer various integrated and tailor-made payment solutions to D2C firms, thus, helping brands to leverage newer payment tools and improve customer experience.


3PLs, through their vast experience in dealing with complex supply chains, not only help in improving brand visibility for retailers but also builds trust and loyalty through their capabilities of on-time delivery and even reverse logistics. If a brand is looking to gain a significant share of the rapidly growing e-commerce market, it will have to partner with players who can provide end-to-end supply chain solutions.

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