E-Commerce fulfillment scams are on the rise. Here are 5 super easy ways to ensure your goods are moving to a safe 3PL.
1. Ask For a Video Call
This might sound silly, but it's actually super valuable. Asking to schedule a video call with an account manager is totally reasonable. It helps to put a face to a name! Check out their background (Are they in a professional location? What do you hear in the background? Are they attentive?). Ask questions, and develop a relationship. If something doesn't feel right, your gut is probably correct. If you can't see their e-commerce fulfillment center, ask why!
2. Ask for References
Any reputable business can offer business references. Most happy customers don't mind giving a great e-commerce fulfillment company a glowing reference. If a company can't offer references, it's definitely a red flag. Ask for references about their experience, response times, challenges, and successes. You can learn a lot about any company this way. Online reviews are fine, but speaking with a reference is far more valuable. After all, your business is on the line.
3. Check With the Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau has been around for over 100 years and most American consumers are familiar with it. The BBB researches companies that want to join and makes public any complaints they receive about their member companies. They help to settle disputes between customers and member companies and act as mediators when issues arise. Companies that are BBB accredited usually display it on their website. Look for the logo.
4. Get insured - Ask your e-commerce fulfillment company if they have recommendations!
Never, ever ship your goods without insurance. Most freight companies offer insurance products, and if they don't, take the time to find one that does. Your e-commerce fulfillment company should be able to assist. If your product disappears, at least you'll be able to recoup some of your funds. Sure, it's a headache, but it won't be nearly as painful as losing your goods to a scammer. It happens more often than you think.
5. Make sure your e-commerce fulfillment company has insurance too!
If your e-commerce fulfillment company doesn't have insurance, get your stuff out fast. It's ok to ask about their policy and what it covers. If the warehouse burns down, your stuff is going down with it. Make sure you are sending your goods to a safe place. Any 3PL with a great policy would be happy to tell you about it (preferably in writing). You should also have a property off premises policy for your goods!