October 11, 2022 | Supply Chain Strategy
Many companies have seen a significant increase in e-commerce sales after the onset of the pandemic and resulting lockdowns. This, along with growing consumer demand and increased competition among retailers, has led companies to shorten lead times, increase warehousing space and improve customer service in general.
As a result, last mile delivery has become a key area of focus - one that can help a business gain a distinct competitive advantage.
Last mile delivery is the final stage of supply chain distribution that involves transporting goods from the manufacturer or warehouse to the point of consumption.
Businesses face several challenges as they try to figure out ways to better deliver customer service.
Here are a few ways to improve customer experience during last mile delivery.
Having a variety of options for fulfillment has now become vital. Some retailers offer curbside pickup, buy online and pick up in store, shipping from the store, shipping to the store, or endless aisles that combine physical and virtual experiences.
Consumers want to have complete control over the delivery date of their items. It's essential to offer same-day delivery and give customers the option of ordering weeks in advance for specific items, such as furniture or home décor.
Consumers demand real-time transparency and communication throughout the order fulfillment lifecycle. They want to know the status of their orders - when they are being prepared for shipment, when they are shipped, where a load is at any moment and the estimated delivery time.
Retailers need to digitize the delivery process as much as possible. For example, grocery and clothing items can be left at the customer’s front door.
Associates must have several tools at their disposal, including real-time intelligence. It helps retailers and 3PL partners to be well-informed about their shoppers' needs and build trust and loyalty with them.
The scope of last mile delivery can be described in five points:
1. With the help of a company's last mile strategy, leadership can assess what methods they would like to use to support their growth
2. With the right strategy in place, leadership can be better equipped to manage the resources internally and externally for the best outcome possible for the business.
3. It's essential to consider sectors and seasonality to determine where investment (buy or build) may be most necessary and beneficial.
4. Innovation can lead to transformation in industry, but companies need to have a way to support their customers should they change preferences. As many companies are now investing in the direct-to-consumer model, pressure is mounting to keep up with the competition.
5. Failure to effectively plan for last mile delivery can have implications for other parts of the business and limit it from expanding.
Additional Read: Will the Direct-To-Consumer Model Eliminate Retailers in E-Commerce?
By developing an effective strategy for last mile delivery, organizations can see many benefits, such as:
Last mile delivery is a crucial part of the logistics process, and its efficiency can make or break a business. There are many factors to consider when trying to improve last mile delivery, but the most important thing is to focus on the customer experience. By making sure that customers are happy with the service they receive, businesses can ensure that they keep coming back for more.
You can do a few things to improve efficiency in last mile delivery. One is to have a clear and concise plan for delivery. This means knowing the route, the estimated arrival time and what needs to be delivered. Another way to improve efficiency is to use technology to your advantage. This can include using GPS tracking to plan the most efficient route and apps to track deliveries. Finally, it is essential to stay organized and focused while making deliveries. It means keeping track of where you are and what needs to be delivered.
The best way to improve last mile delivery is to use a multimodal approach. This means using multiple modes of transportation to get to the final destination. This can include using public transit, ridesharing, walking, or biking. Each person's situation is different, so it's essential to have many options available. This way, people can choose the best option based on their needs and preferences.