Drop shipping: ‘This is easier and it takes less time’

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

MANGUM, Okla. – Before using Invacare Supply Group’s drop shipping services, American Medi-Serve took inventory management to a new level – the ceiling, to be precise.

“I would order once a month and we’re talking 100 cases of diapers and 200 cases of enteral nutrition,” said owner Donna Martin. “The store was a mess all the time because there was so much stuff in here.”

Not only did navigating the office become a challenge, but the logistics of using the U.S. Postal Service each week was an adventure in itself, she said.

“There were all these boxes we had to label, pack up and take to the post office each week,” she said. “Then we had to deal with packages returned and packages not delivered. Insurance was cost prohibitive and we had no way to monitor each shipment’s progress.”

Drop shipping through Invacare changed all that, Martin said.

“This is easier and takes less time,” she said. “With UPS we can track each package to see where it went and who it went to and we can do it right now.”

Because the company’s primary focus is furnishing mail order supplies to some 21 counties in rural southwestern Oklahoma, there are virtually no walk-in customers to buy any leftover stock. Where that once was a concern, Martin said it’s irrelevant now.

“We don’t keep much stock here anymore,” she said. “We don’t need to.”
HME Inventory Strategies

From the point of origin to the end-user, the dealer facilitates the transaction, but never touches the product.


Product provided on as-needed basis, creating minimal need for on-site storage.


Paying for goods only when they sell.



Semi-trailer container that arrives on dealer dock straight from the Pacific Rim. Designed for the fastest-moving items.


Consolidating orders through a primary source, resulting in shorter delivery times and professional logistics assistance.


Purchasing directly from the source usually yields the lowest price, but it requires the dealer to assume delivery, storage and distribution responsibilities