What is 3PL Software: Your Easy Guide

learn all about this superhero business assistant

  • Written by Alex Dolce
  • Published on December 31, 2023
  • Time to read 9 minutes


In the world of business logistics, there’s a superhero tool known as Third-Party Logistics (3PL) software. But what’s that exactly, and how can it make business operations smoother? In this blog, we break it down in simpler terms. That way, you can know precisely what it is and how it helps e-commerce businesses thrive. 

Understanding 3PL Software:

What’s Behind the Letters:

To start, 3PL stands for Third-Party Logistics, which handles the storage, picking, packing, and shipping of products. So, when we add “software” to it, we get a powerful tool designed to make managing and optimizing logistics (like shipping and storage) much easier.

What 3PL Software Does:

Taking Orders:

First, this tech helps businesses handle customer orders. So, from when they’re placed to when the products reach the customer’s doorstep, this tool is there to help make the process smoother.

Keeping Track of Stuff:

Next, the software shows businesses what products they have in stock. This way, they know when they’re running low on something and need to order more.

Warehouse Wizardry:

Third, the technology makes sure the warehouse runs like a well-oiled machine. It helps with storing products, picking them when ordered, and packing them up for delivery.

Getting Things from A to B:

Another cool thing the software can do is choose the best product delivery routes. Thus, they can get to customers quickly and not cost too much.

Smart Reporting:

Further, this 3PL gadget can generate reports telling businesses how well their logistics work. So, it’s like a report card but for logistics!

Talking to Online Shops:

Additionally, the software talks to online shops (like Shopify or Amazon) so that everything runs smoothly between the online store and the logistics tool.

Making Sure Everyone Gets Paid:

Also, this tech can take care of the money side of things, making sure the logistics folks get paid for their services.

Showing Where Things Are:

Finally, this warehouse technology keeps an eye on products as they move from one place to another, so businesses always know where things are. 

How 3PL Software Works:

The Order Journey:

So, how does the 3PL software help in the journey of a product?

Customer Places Order:

First, A customer buys something online, triggering the logistics process.

Talking to the Online Shop:

Next, the logistics tool talks to the online shop, getting all the order details.

Getting Things Ready:

Then, the software helps to organize warehouse teams or robotics to pick the ordered products and pack them up.

Planning the Trip:

Next, the software plans the best route to deliver the products to the customer on time and without costing too much.

Keeping Everyone Updated:

Finally, the tech automatically updates the customer and the online shop so everyone knows where the products are.

Picking the Right 3PL Software:

So, how do you know which software to use? Well, here are some tips to help:

Tips for Choosing:

  • Check If It Fits:
    • Make sure the 3PL software easily connects with your existing systems and meets your business needs. For example, you might want certain capabilities, but not need others.
  • Watch the Costs:
    • Check how much it costs and make sure it fits your budget. So, consider things like storage costs and charges for fulfilling orders.
  • See What Services It Offers:
    • Make sure it covers all the services you need, like order fulfillment and keeping track of inventory.

With these tips, you can better understand what software and services are best for your business. Plus, if you ever need help with choosing the right 3PL that has the type of software you need, there are tools and places to help match you.

In a Nutshell:

In simple terms, 3PL software is like a superhero assistant for businesses. It makes sure orders get processed smoothly, products are always in stock, and everyone in the logistics chain gets what they need. As you explore the world of 3PL software, understanding how it works and choosing the right one for your business will make your logistics journey much smoother and more efficient.

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