As you look for the right partners to help grow your business, we’ve listed a few things to consider when comparing fulfillment center pricing.  For the most part, fulfillment center pricing has been standardized across the industry.  However, there are a few extra features that are good to be aware of.  You also want to make sure you know how to properly apply the fulfillment center pricing to your business.

In order fulfillment, there are four costs to know in order to calculate your total fulfillment center cost.  These four items are; inbound handling fees, storage fees, pick and pack fees, and shipping fees. The cost of these four items will vary depending on geographic location, commodity class, and inventory velocity (and volume).  Here is a summary of each item:

Inbound Handling Fees

Handling fees are assessed when receiving products into the warehouse. If your products come palletized, on a full truckload (FTL), you can expect a one hour handling fee to be assessed.  A FTL does not usually take more than an hour to unload unless there are special requirements, or the product is floor loaded, ie not on pallets.  Likewise, some inbound shipments may arrive via rail, which, depending on the facility’s capabilities, can take more time to unload.  Full container loads (FCL) are usually unloaded inside of two hours.

Average rate – $22 – $55 per hour

Storage Fees

Storage is pretty straightforward in warehousing and fulfillment.  There are three ways in which you may see storage fees assessed; by the pallet, by the square foot, or by the cubic foot.  Most fulfillment centers will allow you to choose the most beneficial assessment for your business.  These fees are assessed on a monthly basis, using weekly intervals or split-months.

Average pallet rate – $10 – $35 per pallet, per month

Average square foot rate – $0.85 per sq. ft.

Average cubic foot rate – $0.30 per cubic ft.

Pick and Pack Fees

The third factor in fulfillment center pricing is the pick and pack fees.  This involves warehousemen pulling your product from your bulk location, and bringing it to the line to be packed into a shipping box.  The pricing here can vary in inverse correlation with the shipping fees.  In other words, the pick and pack fees may be free at some facilities, but you will pay a higher price for shipping.  On the contrary, some fulfillment centers may charge up to $3.50 per package, and charge a significantly discounted shipping rate.  This rate can also vary if you have special requirements such as multiple items per order, custom labels, custom inserts, custom packaging, or other customizations.

Average price – $2.50

Shipping Fees

Though most of this cost is directly correlated to the size and weight (dim weight) of your package.  Some fulfillment centers have negotiated discounted parcel rates with companies like UPS, FedEx, and DHL and pass those savings on to their fulfillment customers.  These discounts generally increase with a higher volume of shipping.

Example Pricing

Below are some pricing models from a few fulfillment centers.  The example shows fulfillment center pricing for a company selling around 100 orders per month, and shipping 1 item per order.

ShipwireRed StagAmazon (internal)Amazon (external)
Inbound HandlingIncluded (with exceptions) $35 varies by weight, size, location varies by weight, size, location
Storage (per pallet)$25$15$37.44$37.44
Pick and Pack (per order)$2.40$2.55 $2.06 + weight fee* $5.81 + weight fee*
ShippingTable CellDiscounted$0 (included)$0 (included)

*Amazon charges lesser fees for internal orders (orders placed on, and has a slightly different weight fee for these too.  Here are the details of the Amazon pick and pack fees.

Fulfillment center pricing can be complex if you are not familiar with how it works.  That’s where e-Fill Source can help you determine the best fulfillment center for your needs.  Take a few minutes and complete the quote form to get multiple quote on order fulfillment.