Glossary of Terms Used in Order Fulfillment

 

Understanding the different elements of the supply chain can seem like an uphill battle. At Fulfillrite, we want to make your life easier. One of the ways we do this is by offering order fulfillment services. Another way we do this is by providing this glossary of common terms used in our industry.

 

# · A · B · C · D · E · F · G · H · I · K · L · M · N · O · P · R · S · T · U · V · W

 

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3PL: Third-Party Logistics. A 3PL is an outsourced logistics provider, which handles aspects of shipping ranging from warehousing and fulfillment to freight bills and transportation.

 

A

Active Stock: Products which are stored in readily-accessible areas for easy order fulfillment.

Advanced Shipping Notice (ASN): By entering an ASN, you are notifying the warehouse in advance of a pending inbound shipment.

Application Programming Interface (API):  An API is a set of programming instructions and standards. It’s often used to help different software applications work together.

Arrival Notice: A message, usually automated, where the carrier notifies the appropriate party that the shipment has arrived.

 

B

Backorder: Taking orders while waiting on stock to arrive in the warehouse.

Bar Code: A symbol made of printed bars. Each bar represents a letter or number. We use these a lot at Fulfillrite.

Base Currency: Whenever a transaction takes place between two countries, the base currency is the one used for quoting purposes. For example, when importing goods from China to the US, the base currency is usually US Dollars, as opposed to Chinese Yuan.

Bill of Lading (BOL): A BOL is used to indicate where a shipment is going, the weight of the shipment, the commodity, etc. There are usually 3 copies for reference – one for the transportation company, one for the 3PL, and one for the customer.

Booking: This is when you request space on a vessel for cargo.

Bundling: When two or more products are purchased in one order for one price.

 

C

Cargo: Goods being transported on a ship, aircraft, rail, or vehicle.

Carrier: Businesses that deliver inventory. Fulfillrite is not a carrier, but we work with a lot of carriers!

Carrier Liability: Circumstances in which carriers are liable for damage to your stock.

Case Picking: This is when a full case is shipped as a single unit instead of individual items.

Chargeable Weight: The amount of weight a freight carrier can charge for.

Code 128: A type of bar code, often used in logistics. It is often used for the product bar code in lieu of a UPC.

Commercial Invoice: A document created by the seller with their contact information, and information on the products being shipped such as their value for customs and insurance. (We fill these out for our clients based on the information they have on the product).

Commodity Code: A code used for determining the type of goods and the applicable tarrifs when importing or exporting.

Consignee: The receiver of a shipment of goods. Typically, the buyer is the consignee, but it can also be the buyer’s bank in some situations.

Container: Packaging used in shipping, such as cartons, cases, boxes, bundles, and bags.

Containerization: A shipment method in which goods are placed in containers and then unloaded at the destination.

Courier Service: Door-to-door delivery service, usually local.

Customs: The authorities who collect duties on imports and exports. Also colloquially used to refer to duties paid on imports and exports.

Customs Value: The value of the imported goods on which duties will be assessed. Usually includes the price of the goods themselves and the prorated price of the freight or air shipping.

 

D

Destination: The location goods are sent to.

Distribution: All logistics from the end of production to shipment to the end user.

Distribution Center (DC): A warehouse facility which holds inventory before being sent to stores.

Distribution Channel: A company or person who participates in distribution of goods.

Distributor: A business that purchases and resells products.

Dock to Dock: This term is used to ascertain if there is a lift gate or a dock at the end location, so that the truck can pick up from one dock, deliver to another, no lift gate needed.

Drop Ship: Drop shipping is a method of order fulfillment in which a company sells products by delivering them directly from the manufacturer or third party. Drop shipping merchants do not warehouse nor ever handle their inventory.

 

E

Expediting: Shipping faster than normal.

Export: Sending goods to another country.

Export Broker: A company that intermediates between a buyer and seller. They require a fee for their services.

 

F

Freight: Goods being transported from one place to another.

Fulfillment: The act of fulfilling a customer order. Fulfillment includes order management, picking, packaging, and shipping. This is what we specialize in at Fulfillrite!

Fulfillment Services Provider: A company that provides fulfillment services, such as Fulfillrite.

Full Truckload (FTL): When goods take up a full truckload of space.

 

G

General-Merchandise Warehouse: A warehouse used to store goods that do not have special requirements.

GTIN (Global Trade Item Number): A numeric system that provides globally unique codes to goods and services. Related concepts include UPC, ISBN, and NDC.

 

H

Handling Costs: The cost involved in moving, transferring, preparing, and otherwise handling inventory.

Hub: A common connection point in transportation. Fulfillrite is near several hubs including the LGA, JFK, and EWR airports and the Port of New York & New Jersey for ocean freight.

Hundredweight: 100 pounds or about 45 kilograms.

 

I

Import: Goods brought into one country from another.

Inbound logistics: The management of materials from suppliers and vendors into production processes or storage facilities.

Inventory: The quantity of products you own and store for later sale.

Invoice: A detailed statement showing goods sold or shipped and amounts for each.

Item: Any unique manufactured or purchased part, material, intermediate, sub-assembly, or product.

 

K

Kitting: Assembling different products and components as a single SKU into custom packaging.

 

L

Landed Cost: Cost of product plus relevant logistics costs, such as transportation, warehousing, handling, etc.

Last Mile: The final leg of delivery, where the shipment is delivered to the customer.

Less-Than-Truckload (LTL): When goods take up less than a full truckload of space.

Logistics: Logistics refers to the processes involved in the organization, implementation and services which facilitate the efficient movement and management of inventory from storage to fulfillment and delivery.

Logistics Channel: The network of supply chain participants engaged in storage, handling, transfer, transportation, and communications functions that contribute to the efficient flow of goods.

 

M

Manifest: A document which describes individual orders contained within a shipment.

Master Carton: A master carton holds multiple units of the same SKU. Shipping products in a master carton help the customer save money by consolidating the shipment.

 

N

Net Weight: The weight of the merchandise, unpacked.

Node: A place in a logistics system where goods rest – plants, warehouses, etc.

 

O

Omni-Channel: The way a customer interacts with a retailer over multiple channels without experiencing a noticeable change in customer experience.

Order: An order is a request to ship products, following a purchase by a customer. Orders are usually received and processed through our API and shopping cart integrations, but can also be submitted manually via our app.

Order Fulfillment: Order fulfillment is the start-to-finish process of an order being received, prepared, packed and shipped to the customer.

Order Tracking: Order tracking allows a merchant and a customer to track the status of a shipped package, via a tracking number that represents the specific order.

Outbound Logistics: The movement and storage of products from the production line to the customer.

 

P

Packing: Preparing a container to ship. This term is also used for packing “products” for an order.

Packing List: All shipped orders include a list which itemizes the SKU, description and quantities of every item contained in the order. This list is prepared by the fulfillment center.

Pallet: A standardized platform cartons are stacked on, often made of wood.

Pick and Pack: The process of pulling the products of an order from storage and packing it in preparation for shipping.

Picking: Pulling products from storage for an order.

Port: A harbor where ships will anchor. Fulfillrite is strategically located near Port Newark in New Jersey – a major container ship port.

Port of Discharge: Port where vessel is offloaded.

Port of Entry: A port at which foreign goods are admitted into the receiving country.

Prepaid Freight: Freight paid by the shipper to the carrier.

Purchase Order (PO): A purchaser’s authorization to formalize purchase with a supplier.

 

R

Re-Order Point: The re-order point is an inventory level set by the merchant which indicates that inventory levels are approaching a low count and it is time to re-order them to keep stock at the desired level. A threshold for an email reminder can be set through our app.

Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA): An RMA is used as an authorization for return. RMAs help the merchant keep an organized record of their returns and allows the customer to return the item with a reference number to the fulfillment house.

Reverse Logistics: Logistics for management of products after delivery to customer, such as returns and repairs.

 

S

Seasonality: Changes in demand based on time periods (weekly, monthly, etc.)

Serial Number: Often used with items such as electronics, serial numbers are used to represent a specific unique item; as opposed to an SKU, which represents a group of the same items. Fulfillrite offers serial number tracking as a value-added service.

Shipment Cut-off Time: This represents the cut-off time for an order to be entered in order for it to be shipped that day.

Shipper: The party that tenders goods for transportation.

Shipping: Tasks related to the outgoing shipment of goods. It includes packaging, weighing, labeling and loading for shipment.

Slotting: The placement of products within a warehouse.

SKU: Acronym for a Stock Keeping Unit, a code which identifies a product so that it may be tracked in inventory.

Shopping Cart Integration: Shopping cart integration allows fulfillment software to be directly linked and integrated with a shopping cart platform. This direct integration provides the fulfillment house instructions for packing and shipping the order.

Staging: Pulling material from inventory before it’s required.

Stockout (out of stock): When you have inadequate inventory levels to meet current demand.

Supply Chain: Everything from the acquisition of raw materials to the delivery of finished products to the end user.

 

T

Tariff Code: A tariff code is a number field used for customs clearance which classifies a product, allowing customs to clearly define what the product is.

 

U

Uniform Product Code (UPC): A common type of bar code.

 

V

Vendor: The manufacturer or distributor of an item or product line.

 

W

Warehouse: A place to store goods.

Waybill: Document describing goods in a freight shipment.

Web Portal: The web portal is your account dashboard. It provides all of your account information, inventory counts and tracking as well as order tracking.

 

Citations

Datex Warehouse Dictionary: https://www.datexcorp.com/wp-content/uploads/PDF-Datex-Warehouse-DictionaryV1.1.pdf

Miriam-Webster Dictionary: https://www.merriam-webster.com/

KH Freight: http://www.kkfreight.com/consignee-notify-party-shipper.html

The Law Dictionary: https://thelawdictionary.org/