August 9, 2012, 11:58 AM

A medical supplies retailer cures its shipping problem

AMG Medical switched fulfillment vendors to bolster e-retail growth.

Amy Dusto

Associate Editor

Lead Photo

Canadian-based AMG Medical Inc., which sells medical and home safety products like walkers and thermometers in North America and Europe, recently decided that its growing online business in the United States required it to find a faster and more flexible fulfillment provider.

AMG’s old provider was more suited to long-term storage and delivery, says the company’s vice president of sourcing and supplies Jonathan Dankner. It also had a cutoff time of 11:00 a.m. EST for shipping orders on the same day they were placed, meaning orders placed at 11:15 a.m. EST wouldn’t be shipped until the next day. That meant that a consumer who places an order from the West Coast, for example, would have to place an order by 7:15 a.m. PST to have their product shipped the next day.

After considering a number of new fulfillment providers, the retailer chose Saddle Creek Logistics Services to handle its warehousing and pick, pack and ship operation. The vendor has a standard shipping cutoff time of 3:00 p.m. EST, Dankner says, which can be extended with a phone call until 4:00 p.m. EST to accommodate urgent late-placed orders.

While the new service costs more than the old one, it is competitive with fulfillment vendors offering similar services, Dankner says. “We’re paying more but we’re getting a lot more in service and support for the money.” He declined to disclose the specific costs with either the old vendor or Saddle Creek.

One reason the retailer chose to work with Saddle Creek is that it can accommodate the company as its e-commerce needs grow, Dankner says. With 18 Saddle Creek warehouses dotted across the country, AMG could add inventory to those warehouses’ shelves in new regions, which will cut its customers’ shipping times.

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