Costco Wholesale Corporation Has Quietly Found and Implemented a Solution to a Huge Member Problem and Pain Point

Costco Wholesale Corporation

You might not have been aware that this was a problem for the warehouse club, but the big adjustment that Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST) has made will make the members quite happy.

Even if they don’t use the terms “supply chain” and “logistics,” the typical American has been thinking about those concepts since the outbreak began. Instead of thinking more technically, the majority of people’s thoughts are along the lines of “where is the toilet paper I purchased” or “why can’t I have a refrigerator delivered.”

Amazon (AMZN) has set a higher standard for all aspects of delivery-related services and products. Customers have come to anticipate that practically everything they purchase will be delivered the next day. 

Numerous home appliance retailers outsource their products’ delivery to third parties, which drives up prices and adds a layer that the retailer cannot manage. Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST), which has always exercised great caution when controlling the members’ anticipations regarding delivery, has decided to move on a new route.

The success of the Warehouse Club may be attributed to the fact that it has accepted numerous substantial and bulky deliveries on its premises.

Costco Wholesale Corporation Is Interested in Maintaining Complete Control Over the Membership Experience

When a meal delivery business makes a mistake with your order, the restaurant from which the food was originally ordered may or may not be responsible. It’s possible that the delivery guy didn’t collect all of the bags or that the restaurant you ordered from didn’t even bother to put your baked potato in the bag in the first place.

In either scenario, at least some of your ire will be focused on the restaurant, which is in a difficult position. Imagine that you put an order for a significant home item such as a stove or a combination refrigerator and freezer and that the third-party delivery firm made a mistake in fulfilling your order.

It may give you the wrong day, miss a delivery window of four (or even eight) hours, or not show up. That reflects negatively on the firm, which also is unable to regulate how the problem is fixed or manage any particular demands; therefore, the company’s reputation is damaged.

By purchasing its fulfillment firm, Costco Wholesale Corporation has eliminated the need to worry about these issues in its operations. During the earnings call for the company’s second quarter, the CFO, Richard Galanti, provided an update on the status of such initiatives.

“With Costco Wholesale Corporation Logistics, we continue to migrate from vendor drop ship to direct ship from our inventory, particularly in big and bulky commodities,” he added. “This is particularly true in cases when the items being shipped are large and cumbersome.” “In the aggregate, this results in a reduction in the cost of the item as well as an improvement in delivery times and service levels to our members.

Costco Wholesale Corporation Has Made Significant Advances in Their Delivery

In March 2020, Costco Wholesale Corporation paid a total of one billion to acquire Innovel Solutions. Since that acquisition, it has made significant progress in expanding its capacity to transport numerous things to its members.

According to Galanti, “Before this transaction, in the United States, we were performing around 2 million big and bulky deliveries and installations each year.” This was before the company had been acquired. “During the fiscal year ’22, we successfully completed 4.3 million delivery and installations of large and heavy items.

Third parties handled previous deliveries and installations totaling 2 million on behalf of Costco Wholesale Corporation.”

We were responsible for around 70%, or little more than 3 million, of the 4.3 million for the fiscal year ’22. During the fourth quarter, the percentage of deliveries and installations that we were responsible for and carried out ourselves was 81%, “he (the CFO) continued.

Additionally, the warehouse club has been able to shorten the time it takes to deliver orders.

“Before the transaction, we collaborated with over one hundred delivery partners, and the expected average number of days to deliver was greater than 15 days. We are continually working to reduce the days required to deliver large and cumbersome items, which currently stand at a little under five. And we had narrowed it down to a critical delivery team of eight partners, “he stated.

The fact that the Costco Wholesale Corporation is regaining control of a portion of the sales and fulfillment process previously outsourced to a third party may make this seem like a relatively insignificant solution. Because of this, it can maintain control of the process and guarantee that its members are satisfied.



Featured Image: Megapixl © Aoleshko

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About the author: Valerie Ablang is a freelance writer with a background in scientific research and an interest in stock market analysis. She previously worked as an article writer for various industrial niches. Aside from being a writer, she is also a professional chemist, wife, and mother to her son. She loves to spend her free time watching movies and learning creative design.