3 Types of Logistics- Inbound, Outbound, Reverse

The movement and direction of particular goods, parcels, packages, items, or information within a supply chain network are discussed when discussing logistics flows. The three logistical processes on which we will concentrate today can be broken down into three main directions. Particularly for those interested in the Canadian logistics sector, knowledge of these three supply chain directions is crucial.

These are inbound logistics, outbound logistics, and reverse logistics.

  1.  Inbound Logistics

Processes: Purchasing and sourcing of materials, receiving in the warehouse

Touchpoints: Company, brand, dealer, or third-party logistics company.

Inbound logistics, as the name implies, is concerned with operations involving the incoming flow of the resources required to create a good or service. Receiving inventory directly from the manufacturer is one example of inbound logistics.

The steps to order, receive, store, transport, and manage incoming supplies are all included in this process. The supply side of the supply-demand equation is the main focus of inbound logistics.

Inbound Logistics Major Process Includes:

Buying Materials:

  • Inbound logistics includes the procurement of raw materials and finished goods.
  • You and your supplier or manufacturer should keep track of the materials and goods your company has ordered, as well as have freight shipping tracking in place.


  • When goods arrive at a warehouse, the receiving team accepts them, logs them, and stores them in the appropriate inventory storage location.
  • You’ll need a good inventory tracking system to keep track of when and how much inventory has arrived at the warehouse.
  • Outbound Logistics

Processes: Delivering orders to customers and providing delivery-related customer service

Touchpoint: Organization, brand, store, or third-party logistics provider > Customers

Shipments of finished goods from a warehouse or distribution facility to customers are known as outbound logistics. It consists of the picking, packing, shipping, and delivery of a package as part of the order fulfillment process.

A carefully chosen outbound logistics system offers enhanced visibility and a more comprehensive picture of the distribution of shipments. Giving them real-time updates helps your business’s ability to provide satisfying customer service.

Outbound Logistics Major Process Includes:

  • Order processing

When an order is received, it is routed to the warehouse management system (WMS) and placed in the processing queue.

  • Product selection and packaging

The products are selected from their designated inventory location, and inventory counts are updated to ensure that stock levels are correct. After that, the products are packaged, labeled, and sorted by carrier and service.

  • Shipment of completed goods

The packages are picked up by carriers, and the finished products are shipped out.

Reverse Logistics

Supply chain management that moves goods back from buyers to sellers or manufacturers is known as reverse logistics.

 The five Rs of reverse logistics are returns, reselling, repairs, replacements, and recycling.

– Reverse logistics improve brand image

  • First, the customer feels as though they are making a purchase from a business with excellent management and response capabilities.
  • Additionally, users will perceive respect for and commitment to the environment that is increasingly valued if the material or product is returned and becomes a link in a recycling or reuse chain.

– It is a reliable source of information:

Reverse logistics will assist the business in better understanding and knowing its customers as well as gaining more and better knowledge about the goods it sells. The return offers data that could be useful if the following are examined:

  • what product type is returned more frequently,
  •  why the products us returned
  • what aspects of the product can be improved, and
  •  what step in the process fails.