Logopak provides automated shipping label solution at QVC
QVC UK is the biggest television shopping channel in the UK, broadcasting since 1993, with an interactive website, mobile apps and social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Pinterest. This project involved designing, supplying and installing an automated despatch solution for QVC at their Customer Operations Centre on Merseyside.
The main contract was awarded to Conveyor Networks, who turned to Logopak to provide a bespoke solution for the printing of documents and labelling of items on the despatch line. The key challenge was to print the ship note and include it with the shipping label and the product as it travelled along the line. This involved developing 2 solutions – one for small or high value items which were to be bagged, and another for larger boxed items which could be despatched in the original vendor carton. The combined solution significantly increased the efficiency of the bagging, labelling and despatch process.
View the solution in action in the video at the foot of this page.
As experts in the design and implementation of bespoke labelling solutions, Logopak were able to design a bespoke system for QVC UK. They looked at all aspects of the despatch process and liaised with a number of other solution partners who were working on specific aspects of the installation, such as the conveyors, software, and bagging machine. The solution for high value or smaller items involved a 2-tier conveyor system designed by Conveyor Networks. Logopak needed to design a solution that would print sales documents at speed and place them accurately on the lower conveyor. The purchased item is placed on a conveyor which then travels up onto a raised track, which is joined by the lower conveyor directly beneath it. Logopak used 2 high-speed industrial printers which work in tandem to print up to 18 documents a minute. The documents are placed onto the moving conveyor using a positive application arm which is accurate to within 2mm, ensuring the customer order is matched with the relevant paperwork on the conveyors. The 2 conveyors then merge so that the product is positioned on top of the printed document. It enters a bagging machine, and both items are bagged together. A Logopak 515T print and apply labelling machine then prints a carrier shipping label which is applied to the bag, ready to enter the distribution system.
Original vendor carton items required a different approach – it is not desirable to open the box to insert documents, so a solution was needed that incorporated the ship note with the shipping label on the exterior. To address this, Logopak developed the OSL (over-shipping label) solution. On these lines, the boxes are passed along a single conveyor. A laser printer produces the ship note which is then passed to a folding machine. The folded document is then passed to the underside of the applicator of a Logopak 920 TBH which is holding the printed shipping label. The folded document is neatly enclosed by the shipping label which is then applied to the box below. The 920TBH includes a device that measures the height of each box so that the label is applied at the correct speed and height. When the customer receives the delivery, the shipping label peels back to reveal the ship note within.
The Customer Operations Centre operates 5 lines with 2 Logopak 515T labellers and 3 Logopak 920TBH labellers installed, in addition to the high-speed laser printers. Once installed the system underwent rigorous testing and commissioning procedures to ensure it could cope with the speed and volumes required.
Contact Logopak to find out more about ecommerce, shipping labels and despatch solutions.
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