By many accounts, 2016 was a real pain. An ugly political scene, sadness over the loss of legendary entertainers, violence abroad—you name it, we had it. But, 2016 is over.
The future looks bright, at least within the 3PF industry, where we see rapid growth, category expansion, and considerable amounts of consolidation among service providers. Just in the past 2 years, there have been at least 5 mergers among prominent order fulfillment providers. This trend may continue, as Amazon continues to remove under-performers from its marketplace, sending sellers to the open markets of Shopify and Bigcommerce.
It's the overall performance of fulfillment providers that will continue to be tested in 2017. Meeting the growing demands of brands and sellers (and their consumers), is where 3PF's must prove their worth. Specific areas include On-Time Delivery, Time-in-transit, Pick Accuracy, and Value-added Services.