4PL Logistics: How are the differnet from 3Pl services?

5 Reasons You Need to Know About 4PL Logistics in 2020

4pl logistics

Online business has its perks. It helps you become your own boss and earn profits without leaving your desk. Moreover, it helps you become your customer’s hero by delivering products to their doorsteps. While there are many factors ensuring the success of your online business, 4PL logistics has a major part to play. 

4PL logistics can have a deep impact on your business. It helps you reach out to your customers with complete efficiency. Moreover, it makes sure that you don’t have to invest all your money on a shipping provider.

You might be a new online seller or have been reaching out to the customer for a while. Either way, you’re using a logistics provider that helps you deliver your products. But when you were choosing which carrier to ship with, you must have come across terms like 4PL and 3PL.

If these terms seem difficult to you, don’t worry! You’re not alone. We’re here to help you understand what are 3PLs and why are they important for your business.

Why Know About 4PL Services?

The reason why you must know about 4PLs is that they can have a direct impact on your business. 

If You’re Shipping with One Courier Company

If you’re shipping with one courier company right now, 4PL can be a game-changer for your business. Alternatively, if you’re looking for shipping services, there is probably nothing better than a 4PL. They can help you ship with multiple courier partners from a single platform. Therefore, you can leverage the best courier service for each of your orders. 

If You’re New to the Market

Similarly, if you are new to the online selling market and don’t know where to get starters, 4PL can be the solution for you. They can give your business direction. Moreover, they can help you earn a competitive edge in the market, without much ado. A 4PL can help you avoid the mistakes of eCommerce, that most other businesses go through.

If You’re Thinking About Starting Your Online Business

Moreover, if you are thinking about starting your own business online, they can be the right solution for you. In other words, 4PL logistics can help you get started in the market and introduce you to the world of eCommerce. With their plethora of servies, you can easily set foot and target the right audience for your products. 

If You Want to Improve Your Customer Experience

In case you’ve been selling in the market for a long time and can’t find ways to provide your customers with enhanced customer experience, 4PL logistics is for you. 4PL logistics can help you improve your customer experience with multiple folds. They can help you fulfill your promises to your customers and become your customer’s hero.

If You Want to Save Costs

Another crucial aspect of an online business are costs. Regardless of whether you are running a business from your home or a large factory, you need to save costs. This helps you increase your profit margins as well as think of new areas of growing your business. 4Pl logistics can help you achieve all of this as well as optimize your business costs. They will suggest you cheaper and qualitative options for everything you want to do. 

What are PLs, Anyway?

PLs are commonly used in the logistics industry. They are the abbreviation for party logistics. In other words, these services are used to indicate the carrier services used to transport goods from one place to another.

However, the definition of party logistics has transformed with recent developments. In other words, as the number beside the PL increases, organizations are enhancing thier services as per the scope of eCommerce businesses.

For example, first-party logistics refers to cargo owners who can be shippers. These can be a retailer picking up cargo from a supplier etc. Similarly, a second party logistics can be those carriers that provide transportation services to a specific number of people.

It is after this that the 3PL and 4PL come into the picture. 

What are the Services Provided by 4PL Providers?

4PL logistics service providers are quintessentially companies that help in delivering the parcel to the customer’s doorstep. But, apart from this, 4PLs provide a wide range of services including fulfillment, picking packing, warehousing, etc. Moreover, in many cases, they also provide customer experience, and customer service as well. 

  • Strategy making for logistics, freight forwarding
  • Expense analysis for transportation, capacity, performance
  • Network infrastructure analysis
  • Management of resources and projects
  • Complete inventory management, supply and demand chain planning across countries

Despite 4PL logistics providers being based on an entirely new concept, several advantages come with them include:

  • Basking the sheer strategic advantage of a 4PL logistics provider
  • An effective method of outsourcing the logistics of a business
  • Maintains a single layer of contact for all agencies involved in the supply chain network
  • High end professional solutions for customer support and experiences
  • Relevant ownership models for any business
  • Affordable and productive supply chain network for yielding better profits
  • Takes care of everything in-between logistics to resources, for business owners to take care of their products

4PL logistics providers don’t usually have shortcomings, except one. In this model business owners don’t have a lot of control over logistics and order fulfillment processes.

What is the Difference Between a 3PL and 4PL?

The critical difference between the two lies in the sheer approach that both of them follow. The 3PL providers are more like overseers looking at the logistics of the supply chain network.

They look at services that they don’t provide need to be taken care of. And then they suggest or refer the business owner to their partners or affiliation.

However, 4PL logistics supply chain providers acquire a service even if they don’t provide it by themselves. 

The other key differences include:

  1. 4PL logistics are best suited for medium-to-large scale business owners, while the 3PLs are more focussed around small-to-medium businesses
  2. 4PLs provide optimization strategies on the all-round development of the logistics and warehousing process, 3PLs monitor the daily operations
  3. The 4PLs own the assets involved in the logistics, while 3PLs can lease or operate on contract from other vendors
  4. 4PLs focus entirely on providing services of great value. While 3PL providers are limited to taking care of affordability in their channels.
4Pl logistics

Pick, Pack and Ship Seamlessly

Now that you know about 3PL and 4PL services, it’s time to declare a winner. You can easily choose to ship with one courier company. But, that will not have the same impact as that of an all-encompassing shipping provider as a 4PL logistics. The mantra is simple- 

If you’re a large enterprise that handles everything from manufacturing to fulfilling to customer support, it is best that you do all by yourself. 

Alternatively, if you are a small business or someone starting new, the best you can do is hire a 4PL for you. This will help you maximize your reach and set the right foot in the market. 


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