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Managing Your Growing Volume

A simple guide to scaling up shipping and fulfillment to keep your business growing


Your Journey from Small to Large Business

Whether you’re managing a small business that has outgrown your local postal provider or a medium-sized business ready to investigate outsourcing fulfillment, we’ll walk you through some key considerations including:

  • Exploring new shipping capabilities
  • Considering consolidated freight services 
  • Investing in technology and integrations
  • Outsourcing fulfillment

Exploring New Shipping Capabilities


Most of our customers that started as a small shipper, began by using the local postal service. These services are easy, reliable and convenient. But as your shipping volume increases, they aren’t always able to accommodate your needs. You may need to consider a shipping partner with more convenient service features, improved customer service and the potential to make cost savings. Here are some factors to consider:

Pickups

You may start by dropping your shipments off at a post office or service station. But when your volume starts to grow, pickups may be more convenient. 

  • Is there a charge for pickup at your business?
  • Is there a weight limit for pickup?
  • Is there a maximum number of shipments?
  • Can you print out all the labels ahead of time?

Volume Savings

Your postal provider probably offers some discounted shipping rates for volume shippers. But the volume required is probably very high. 

  • What are the thresholds for getting discounted shipping?

International Shipping

Your postal service can facilitate international shipping through collaboration with other postal services. But are they the most efficient?

  • How long does it take to ship internationally?
  • What is the cost of an international shipment?
  • Can you track the entire journey?

Partnering with DHL

If you are outgrowing your postal provider and need to consider a new partner with additional service offerings, we operate in more than 220 countries and territories. Our team of more than 600,000 shipping and logistics specialists works every day to deliver world-class shipping services.   

We know your shipping provider is an extension of your brand. So with world-class capabilities and customer service teams our divisions are here to help you manage your growing volume and your business. 

DHL Express

DHL Express offers next possible business day delivery to more than 220 countries and territories around the world. In most countries DHL Express offers both domestic and international service. 

  • Free pickups, no shipment limit
  • Free and chargeable packaging supplies
  • Max weight 150 lbs, heavier upon request
  • Ship more, save more with our Dynamic Discounting Program

DHL eCommerce

In the United States, DHL eCommerce offers cost-effective domestic and international business shipping more than 5,000 shipments monthly. As your small business continues to grow, you can explore our robust services for larger businesses. In Europe, Malaysia and Thailand, DHL eCommerce offers services for small or medium-sized businesses. 

Real World Examples

Parcel and Document Business Shipping Options

Our products and services vary by country. If you’re looking for service from another country, change the country edition at the top of the site. For service from the United States, explore our parcel and document service details. 

Consider Consolidated Freight Services


If you are faced with many shipments going to the same general location, or you need to bring in products from different suppliers in the same general location, you might want to consider consolidated freight. 

Outbound Consolidated Freight

With product leaving your operation going to one general location, consolidated freight may help you save you money and improve reliability by reducing the number of times each individual package is handled. In this case, you would collect all your packages going to one area into a single shipment. A freight company would take that shipment directly to the area, where it would be broken down into individual shipments and delivered to a local carrier for delivery. 

Inbound Consolidated Freight

With inbound consolidation, the collections could be from several different sources, for example in China. Those items would be collected into one shipment and brought into your warehouse as one shipment. 

Partnering with DHL

With expertise in parcel and freight shipping, we can provide a full range of services. Several of our divisions offer freight consolidation service to suit your needs.

DHL Global Forwarding

Our freight forwarding company, DHL Global Forwarding offers a range of services including: air freight, ocean freight, rail freight, customs brokerage and customs consulting. With full load, partial load and consolidation services, our local teams around the world can help you navigate the complexities and cost of freight shipping. 

DHL Freight

Available in Europe, DHL Freight offers reliable road freight service on our own dedicated network, connecting Europe's business centers every day. DHL Freight offers consolidated shipment options for small businesses looking to ship many shipments to the same location.

Investing in Technology and Integrations


As a small or medium business, you know how valuable your time is, not to mention the time of the people you are paying. Digital services and technology integrations with your shipping partners can help save you time and money. Whether it is making shipping faster to increase volume or reducing customer service calls. Here are some technology options to consider.  

Integration with Your Online Store Front

Whether your customers are domestic or international, they want to know the full and final price of their purchase and they want to know who will be delivering their shipment. Research reveals that customers want options -- fast, economical, secure. They also want easy tracking and the ability to re-route. Here are some things to make sure your provider offers:

  • Are you showing the fully landed price?
  • Are you automatically sending a tracking number to your customer?
  • Does your provider offer technology to let your customers re-route or reschedule?

Internal Systems

You may have started off just using some tools provided by your e-commerce platform provider  — like Amazon or Shopify. But as you grow and find more sales opportunities or want to integrate your online and offline (brick and mortar) operations, you may consider some additional technology.

Shipping Provider Tools - If you are using one provider that may have tools to help facilitate your shipments. Look for key features like bulk shipment printing and reporting. 

Shipping Aggregator/Enabler - If you have multiple shipping providers, these plug-and-play providers can help you find the least expensive option. However, keep an eye out for shipping markup. Are you able to manage the carrier relationship, while still benefiting from the software?

Warehouse/Transport Management System (WMS/TMS)- A warehouse management or transportation management system can really prepare your business for the next level of growth. These software solutions offer visibility into a business’ entire inventory and manage supply chain fulfillment operations. They can be costly, but effective in helping you manage your growing business. 

Partnering with DHL

When it comes to technology and digital services, we pride ourselves as being as innovative as a start-up, with the power of an international organization. We have invested in a wide range of services and tools to give you the choice to integrate how you want as quickly and easily as possible. 

To help you provide the highest level of price transparency to your customers, DHL has developed the DHL Duties and Taxes Calculator. Businesses can leverage this tool in several ways. This tool allows you to calculate international duties and taxes accurately at checkout. As a result, international customers have full visibility of total costs, and a frictionless shopping experience. 

This tool can be used with any DHL division or with any other carrier.


In terms of digital tools and portals, our parcel and document shipping divisions offer:

DHL Express 

  • Integration with all major e-commerce platforms, with the ability to provide tracking information directly to customers
  • DHL Express Commerce, portal with direct integration to major e-commerce platforms
  • “On Demand Delivery” allows parcel recipients to manage their delivery preferences
  • MyDHL+  web portal for shipment creation, order management and more
  • Direct API Integrations

DHL eCommerce

  • Integration with all major e-commerce platforms, including tracking information to customers
  • Web portal for shipment creation, order management and more
  • Direct API Integrations

Integrations and Tools

From portals to APIs, explore the wide range of options to integrate DHL into your internal business systems and sales channels.

Outsourcing Fulfillment


When you started, maybe you kept your inventory at home or in your store and fulfilled every order yourself. But as you begin selling on more platforms or your products gain popularity, you may realize you can’t pick, pack, and ship the increased volume on your own. If dropshipping isn’t a big part of your business, outsourcing order fulfillment can save you the time, money and hassle of finding additional warehouse space and hiring workers. 

An outsourced order fulfillment partner will handle receiving and managing inventory, as well as, order picking, packing, shipping and order return processing. Here are some questions to ask when considering an outsource partner.

  • Does your partner integrate with your selling platform or internal order fulfillment software?
  • Can your partner scale up for peak season?
  • What type of customer service is offered?
  • Does your partner support an international distributed inventory model?
  • What sustainable options are available?
  • Is your data secure?
  • How are returns handled?

Partnering with DHL

As the world leading logistics provider, we have leveraged our knowledge as a leading contract logistics provider for Fortune 500 companies to create the DHL Fulfillment Network for small and medium-sized businesses around the globe.  With the DHL Fulfillment Network, powered by our DHL Supply Chain division, you can quickly scale your e-commerce operations using our worldwide fulfillment centers and in-country experts. 

How does it work?

  • Your customer’s order is sent to a DHL fulfillment center, where your products are stored
  • The DHL team quickly picks, packs and checks the order
  • Your order is delivered by best-in-class carriers in all markets

The DHL Fulfillment Network is built on trust. Our customers trust us with their e-commerce orders and they trust the scale of our global network of fulfillment centers. Most of all, they trust our people working in our warehouses to our own high standards. Explore our DFN Pricing Calculator

Real World Examples