Fulfillment is everything that happens between clicking that ‘purchase now’ button to when it arrives at your door.
Once you actually place an online order, a lot goes on behind the scenes. The brand you purchase from has to actually pull the product(s) from the shelf, package it up, create a label, and ship it out. You’ll likely get confirmation emails and tracking information along the way, too.
And if you receive the order and aren’t happy with it, then what happens? You return it, right? Well that’s also part of the fulfillment process.
Many brands start out doing all of these things themselves. But if the number of orders coming in starts to outpace the speed at which they can get the packages out the door and into customers’ hands, many start to think about outsourcing fulfillment. This is the kind of “problem” every entrepreneur hopes to have when they launch their brand.