The Ultimate Guide to Retail Fulfillment: How to Optimize Productivity

Engineers know that simple designs are more reliable, less expensive to manufacture and have tighter tolerances. The same principle applies in retail order fulfillment, where fewer, more streamlined moving parts are almost always better.

What Is Retail Fulfillment?

Retail fulfillment encompasses all the actions and processes required to deliver a product to the customer, including receiving, storing, picking, packing and shipping products.

Your offline channels, including traditional sales channels like your distributors and retail outlets, are just as important as cutting-edge online channels like e-commerce sites, social media and online marketplaces.

This is what’s called an omnichannel retail fulfillment strategy. It’s where you give customers more choices as to how they interact with you and make purchases.

Understanding the Retail Fulfillment Process

Top-notch retail fulfillment shortens delivery time yet ensures that packages arrive securely. 

Receiving Inventory

Each item is entered into warehousing software upon receiving inventory and stored in specific locations to guarantee accurate picking and packaging. 

Inventory Management

Once the items are in the warehouse, in-house tracking software keeps tabs on inventory levels so you know:

  1. Where your items are
  2. How many there are
  3. How quickly you can retrieve them
  4. How fast they can get from one department to the next
  5. Whether any items have been returned

Print Bind Ship has ample experience with orderly and optimized warehousing for fast processing.

Picking and Packing

As orders come in, the items in your inventory must be located and packaged for delivery.

Shipping and Delivery

Once shipped, tracking services give customers and sellers peace of mind. For sellers, tracking information can be used to determine whether their shipping channels are as efficient as possible.

Returns and Exchanges

When customers demand returns or exchanges, it pays to have an experienced, full-service third-party logistics (3PL) provider on your side. Print Bind Ship can handle returns without your involvement. 

Managing Transactions and Data

Accurate data allows for meticulous record-keeping, which is important for everything from proper tax filing to customer service. It also enables sellers to maximize profits by tweaking product lineups and targeting consumers who are more likely to make purchases.

5 Benefits of Retail Fulfillment for E-Commerce Businesses

By embracing an omnichannel retail fulfillment strategy, you create a unified customer experience. Here’s how.

Improved Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty

Customers can choose how they purchase your products, whether it’s through targeted social media ads, an e-commerce marketplace or a physical retail shop.

Increased Efficiency and Productivity

By unifying and streamlining your product fulfillment processes, you can increase speed and accuracy while reducing the time spent on picking and packaging.

Potential to Reduce Costs

Inefficient processes eat up time and manpower. Optimizing the retail fulfillment process means spending less for better results.

Enhanced Inventory Management and Tracking

Use proper inventory management and tracking procedures from the moment the products arrive at the warehouse to the moment they arrive at a customer’s doorstep to maintain control and find areas for improvement. 

Opportunity for Expansion and Scalability

You can easily expand existing locations or spread out to new ones, especially if you’re relying on quality management and tracking software.

How to Optimize Your Retail Fulfillment

You can’t measure what you don’t track. Before you begin, make sure you’re collecting the right data.

Tip 1: Analyze Your Current Fulfillment Process

Identify bottlenecks, gaps in monitoring or areas where products get damaged. Review your systems to make sure they’re providing accurate information.

Tip 2: Optimize Your Inventory Management

Implementing inventory management software can be complex, which is why you should partner with Print Bind Ship. No need to get new software or update practices — we take care of that for you!

Tip 3: Reduce Customer Complaints

Better monitoring and tracking make the customer experience more stable and enjoyable. Returns and exchanges are simpler, and customer communication becomes more transparent.

Tip 4: Implement Technology

Integrating your various processes with tracking software and automation allows you to track items through the entire chain of operations. The data will help you make decisions about your product lineups and marketing strategies.

Tip 5: Outsource Retail Fulfillment to a 3PL

Most businesses don’t have the resources to manage all retail fulfillment processes. 3PLs like Print Bind Ship can handle the grunt work. Here are just a few of the ways we can benefit you:

Cost Savings

Print Bind Ship can negotiate rates with carriers and store items in strategic locations worldwide for quick shipping.


As you grow, you must scale up your order fulfillment capability. Rather than invest in new warehouses and seek new supplier or shipping relationships, let your 3PL partner handle it.


Print Bind Ship has decades of in-the-field experience, tons of institutional knowledge and many strong supply chain partnerships you can take advantage of.

Time Savings

Partnering with Print Bind Ship means you can focus on grabbing customer attention and closing sales. While you see to your growth and development, we’ll handle the work of fulfilling orders.


We can modify our offerings and pricing depending on the specific services you need.

Why Choose PBS for Managing Your Retail Fulfillment?  

Finding the right 3PL partner shouldn’t be a nerve-racking, hair-pulling experience. Print Bind Ship offers decades of warehousing/tracking/shipping/manufacturing expertise and customized solutions, as well as unrivaled customer service. It’s our job to make sure you and your customers are happy!

Optimizing Retail Fulfillment Is as Easy as Contacting Print Bind Ship

When an item arrives at the warehouse, it has quite a journey before it’s in your customer’s hands. It has to go into storage and get picked, packaged and shipped, all without incident and as quickly as possible.

This process doesn’t have to weigh down your mind and eat up your resources. Contact Print Bind Ship and let us take care of your retail fulfillment!


How do I choose a retail fulfillment provider?

Look for a partner with experience handling similar businesses. Compare shipping speeds, prices, customer service and inventory management processes to confirm that it’ll provide superior service.

What are the benefits of outsourcing retail fulfillment?

One of the biggest is freeing up time and money that you can spend on improving your products and customer experience. You can also expect faster, more reliable shipping and superior scalability.

What role do supply chain partners play in retail fulfillment?

Each partner is essential for successful retail fulfillment. From inventory management to packaging to shipping, supply chain partners ensure delivery logistics work smoothly.