Demand for distribution centres based in the UK is growing thanks to rising ecommerce and the added challenges introduced by Brexit.
Latest figures show that ecommerce sales now make up around 30 per cent of all retail sales. And according to Jim Hardisty, managing director of goplasticpallets.com, this, coupled with the additional paperwork which comes with importing goods from Europe, means there is more need for large distribution centres in the UK, automated processes and packaging for use in transit which is both reliable and durable.
The increase in online sales has resulted in a major change in how companies use warehousing and distribution. Retailers are starting to acknowledge that they need to invest in storage and logistics over traditional bricks and mortar stores.
In the first six months of this year, a total of £6 billion has been invested in warehouse space in the UK – more than double the amount for the same period in 2020. Retail giant John Lewis saw online transactions becoming the main source of its sales – growing from 40 per cent to 60 per cent.
In response, the department store has rented one million square foot of warehouse space to cope with the extra demand to fulfil online orders.
Knight Frank, a real estate consultancy in the UK, has forecast that there will be demand for 92 million square feet of warehousing space by 2024 when online sales are expected to make up almost a third of all transactions.
But while space is important, it isn’t the only thing which matters when it comes to meeting the demand of online shopping. Investing in automated processes to ensure orders are fulfilled and distributed efficiently is also important.
AP+ provides end-to-end third party logistics (3PL) services to companies working in the furniture and homeware industry. As well as providing storage for stock in a 300sq ft warehouse, we also offer picking, packing, distribution and returns management services.
And AP+ has invested in a number of systems using automated processes to make sure customer orders are dealt with quickly and efficiently. These include a cloud-based order management system (OMS) and warehouse management system (WMS) which checks and updates inventory in real time.
We have also established both offline and automated stock control systems which are integrated with 60 different e-commerce platforms. Carrier comparison software then helps us identify the most cost-effective carrier to fulfil each order, reducing the risk of unnecessary expense and delays.
To find out more about the services we offer, contact our team today.