The Amazon Effect
The success of Amazon has influenced many market factors in today’s ecommerce environment, including product selections, ease of use, accuracy of order, and most notably, responsiveness and fulfillment speed.
To keep up with these increasing demands, companies across industries have upgraded technologies and improved processes within the 4 walls of their distribution centers. However, after products leave the dock doors, those warehouse improvements don’t make the journey to the final destination any faster.
In the past, companies usually had a couple of large distribution centers in the center of the country plus the top 1 or 2 markets. These days, companies are moving towards a larger number of smaller distribution centers located closer to customers, ensuring orders are received as quickly as possible.
Florida Distribution Centers Continue to Increase
This presents a unique distribution and logistics market in the state of Florida. With Florida being a peninsula in the corner of the country, in a way, it is isolated from much of the state-to-state network. However, Florida is the 3rd most populous state, with over 20 million residents and hosting over 100 million visitors every year. With this many people plus the growing demand for faster delivery, it has seen a tremendous growth in the presence of distribution centers over the past few years.
There are now 8 Florida cities that are home to Amazon fulfillment, ranking fifth among states for number of Amazon centers, with rumors of a 9th in Daytona Beach. Walmart opened an e-commerce distribution center in 2017, making it the 6th Walmart DC in the state. This distribution and logistics growth is represented in companies of all sizes.
One area that has experienced much of this growth is the I-4 corridor between Tampa and Orlando. Not only is it located towards the center of the state, but it also has convenient highway access to two of the state’s most populous cities – Miami and Jacksonville. This area provides access to basically all 20 million residents of Florida in half a day’s drive, making it a logical location for two of Amazon’s facilities and the Walmart e-commerce DC.
Location & Logistics
In addition to the large population, Florida is also the United States’ gateway to South America and much of the rest of the world. With several deep-water seaports, Florida exports more than $50 billion in goods annually. This constant flow in and out of the ports puts great demands on the logistics systems of the state, requiring even more distribution facilities and warehouses to keep up.
All of this growth for distribution and logistics in Florida is very exciting and will no doubt continue as companies become more responsive and the population continues to grow.
If you’re in need of material handling systems or automated order fulfillment solutions in Florida, please contact us. We’re excited to have recently opened an office in Tampa to help meet the growing distribution and logistics demands in the state.
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