How To Choose The Best 3PL For Your Macy’s Orders

The best eCommerce brands and sellers are constantly looking for new sales channels to expand their footprint. Most people think of Macy’s and its sister brand Bloomingdale’s as retailers that are heavily focused on their brick and mortar stores, who trail well behind the likes of Amazon in eCommerce. Therefore, they are likely not the first names that come to a merchant’s mind when they consider expanding beyond Amazon. However, in recent times, Macy’s has begun to catch on to the surge in eCommerce and realizes that it represents an opportunity through which it can boost sales and revive stalling growth.

In 2022, Macy’s reported it has around 45 million active shoppers, of which 29.1 million are Star Rewards members – a sizable audience for an online seller to target. In a bid to increase the product mix that it offers, the company launched its online third-party marketplace in late 2022. Unlike Amazon’s marketplace, where nearly anyone can start selling, Macy’s platform is curated. This could be done to ensure they serve their customers with the brands and products they think will most appeal to them. If you’re reading this, it probably means you’ve been selected by them to feature your assortment – congratulations! 


One of the key benefits of this 3rd Party Marketplace is its Vendor Direct Program – which allows merchants to receive orders that customers place on Macy’s website, and fulfill those orders on their own. This offers significant advantages for a couple of reasons.

Why is The Macy’s Vendor Direct Program Great For Sellers?

Simplified Inventory Management

As Macy’s allows sellers to fulfill their orders independently, you do not need to send some of your inventory to a Macy’s warehouse. This is a welcome relief for sellers who might already have sent some inventory to Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) or Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS), and are overwhelmed by keeping track of all these different marketplace-specific order fulfillment solutions. Macy’s allows you to manage your order fulfillment entirely on your own, just like you might be doing for your Shopify storefront, for example. This ensures that you don’t have to work with another logistics solution that is specific to a single sales channel. 

Whatever The Logistics Setup, Everyone Has a Fair Chance

Amazon’s A9 algorithm for search rankings, as well as the Buy Box algorithm, both assign high preference to listings that are fulfilled by the company’s inhouse FBA logistics network. Additionally, when delays or issues occur with FBA, Amazon faces no penalties – whereas Sellers fulfilling their own orders face severe penalties if they make a mistake, including having their product listings suspended. With Macy’s, there is no such competing network that stacks the odds against you – everyone competes equally, and the brands with the best products who achieve the highest order fulfillment excellence will win.

While all this offers sellers and their businesses operational and strategic advantages, the program still has high expectations from participating brands. Your choice of a 3rd Party Logistics Provider is a crucial factor in determining your success, and there are a few key factors to consider. 

What Should You Look For in a Macy’s 3PL?

Full Compliance With Macy’s Vendor Direct Fulfillment (VDF) Tech Stack

Macy’s requires that sellers integrate with their platform via CommerceHub. Within 1 hour of a purchase order being made, sellers must push acknowledgement to Macy’s via this integration. Also, the order must be shipped within 2 business days, and merchants must push confirmation that the order was fulfilled to Macy’s via this connection (with carrier tracking information). Your Macy’s 3PL fulfillment partner must be able to work with this configuration and ensure your orders are shipped on time. 

Cahoot is very responsive and organized in all aspects. Everything is prepared to give anyone the best experience ever. They’re the right partner to help you accomplish your business purpose.” 

Italian Food Online Store

Flexibility to Work With The Carrier Account Macy’s Provides

Macy’s will provide you with a UPS account for you to use, that must be used exclusively for fulfilling VDF orders. Your 3PL partner must be able to have flexibility and agility in both their software and operations which supports sellers bringing their own accounts.

Ultrafast Shipping

Image of a warehouse.

Macy’s requires that 98.5% of orders are shipped (leave the warehouse) in under 2 business days. However, the consumer expectation today is for fast, free shipping across every channel – when you operate either from a single warehouse you own, or work with a traditional 3PL (usually with just a couple of fulfillment center locations), aiming to cover the entire country from a limited number of locations becomes extremely challenging. Additionally, with Macy’s carrier accounts, you can only pick the UPS SurePost or Ground services to fulfill orders. Imagine if your 3PL only has a California fulfillment center, but you’re having to ship orders to New York – customers will have to wait 4-5 business days to get their order in the era of ultrafast same or next-day delivery. With a platform like Cahoot, you can leverage a network of strategically located warehouses to place your inventory closer to your end-customers and shorten delivery speeds. 

Adherence to Macy's Packing Requirements

The little things are often the most important – merchants are required to place a Macy’s branded packing slip inside every carton shipped to customers. You need a fulfillment partner that is fully aware of all these requirements, and will sweat the details to ensure you are compliant with all aspects of the VDF program. 

Responsive and Reliable Customer Support

Image of a customer support agent.

As part of the VDF program, Macy’s audits and reviews the performance of sellers on the program – any mistakes or errors that your 3PL commits directly affects your brand reputation and customer experience. It becomes essential to have a customer support team that is responsive and ready to resolve any issues that you may run into.

Experience Working With Macy’s Sellers

As we mentioned before, Macy’s marketplace is curated – meaning that there’s not a huge number of brands or sellers on it, unlike Amazon. This therefore means there are a limited number of order fulfillment services out there that have experience working with merchants who are part of Macy Vendor Direct. Make sure to identify a company that has demonstrable social proof of its track record supporting Macy’s merchants. Here’s what one of our customers, Glo International, had to say about their experience shipping Macy’s orders with Cahoot:

“Cahoot allowed us to reduce the monthly shipping cost and the support service is really responsive and efficient!” 

Glo International

Top Macy's 3PL Companies

Amazon Multi-Channel Fulfillment

Amazon Multi Channel Fulfillment (MCF) is a service through which you can deploy Amazon’s logistics network to fulfill orders on other channels, such as Macy’s. 

Pros:

  • Large fulfillment network – As of January 2022, Amazon operated over 1000 warehouses, with millions of square feet under its management.
  • Amazon fulfillment centers are well equipped to handle small, lightweight SKUs – MCF is a good option if your product mix is mostly in these categories.  

Cons:

  • No direct integration with Macy’s / CommerceHub – you have to use an intermediate connector tool, or build the integration yourself.
  • For Macy’s, you cannot use Amazon Logistics to ship orders (you must use the UPS account they provide) – this incurs a 5% surcharge at the order level.
  • More expensive than FBA, despite using the same resources and logistics network. The reason is obvious – Amazon would like to ensure that its own marketplace is the top priority for every brand and seller.

ShipBob

Pros:

  • Built out EDI integration for Macy’s 
  • Nationwide network of fulfillment centers 

Cons:

  • Inconsistent customer support can prove to be a major issue as Macy’s penalizes sellers for mistakes, not the 3PL.

Cahoot: The Best Macy's 3PL

Cahoot’s order fulfillment network is built for the future of eCommerce. Our network of warehouses is strategically located at different locations in the US, enabling Macy’s merchants to offer ultrafast shipping. Our fulfillment centers are well equipped to handle all types of SKUs (including the ones that the typical Amazon fulfillment center may struggle to process) – small, lightweight, seasonal, slow-moving, heavier and oversized. 

We are also fully compliant with Macy’s technology and packing requirements – and provide you the flexibility to use the UPS account provided by them to you without any hidden fees. Lastly, our US based customer service team is always available if something needs to be fixed – ensuring that you’re continuing to sell more and delight your customers. 

Cahoot order fulfillment company logo
Traditional 3PL
Compliant with Macy VDF Tech Stack
Flexibility to use Macy’s UPS account
Ultrafast nationwide shipping
Great Customer Support

Cahoot is committed to helping Macy sellers grow their businesses with fast and affordable ecommerce order fulfillment service.

If you’d like to find out how Cahoot can help your ecommerce business, please get in touch with us. We can’t wait to show you how Macy’s order fulfillment was meant to be.

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If you are selling on multiple sales channels and are interested in 3PLs that can help you with fulfillment, you can read our other articles:

  1. How to Choose the Best 3PL for Your Shopify Store
  2. How to Choose the Best 3PL for Wayfair
  3. How to Choose the Best 3PL for Target Plus
  4. How to Choose the Best 3PL for the Nordstrom Direct Drop Ship Program

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