The ongoing pandemic that began in 2020 has further disrupted the delivery of consumer goods, specifically last-mile delivery. When companies struggled to keep up with changing customer needs, challenges such as contactless payments, zero cash payments, and health updates arose. Familiar customers want end-to-end transparency in the fulfillment process. Customers found it vital to know where their order is, who brought it in, and when they will receive it. Not only that, customers want their brands to guarantee flexible delivery. Consumers today tend to be loyal to brands that offer a convenient online shopping experience.
To meet these expectations, supply chain leaders need to rethink their end-stage delivery strategy. The traditional hub-and-connected logistics model is not enough to balance customer experience with profitability. Retailers, e-commerce providers, grocery chains, restaurants, and manufacturers will all benefit from digitizing the last-mile delivery process.
What is last-mile delivery?
The last-mile delivery, also known as the final-mile delivery or white glove delivery, is the final step in the delivery process. The process is when a package is transported from the shipping center or warehouse to its final destination (usually a retail store or personal residence). Last-mile delivery aims to deliver parcels to customers as quickly and efficiently as possible while keeping company costs low.
In the supply chain, last-mile delivery refers to the process of delivering the product to the final customer. A product is delivered directly to the consumer’s doorstep with a threshold delivery service, no matter how large or heavy the product is. The threshold delivery company takes care to place the package safely in a dry and sheltered area.
Satisfactory last-mile delivery enables businesses to increase customer demand for fast transportation. Last-mile delivery sets it apart from its competitors by allowing consumers to go to another retailer if their shipping is unsatisfactory. In contrast, last-mile delivery contributes to building a diverse customer base and improving brand loyalty
Partnering with a last-mile delivery service has many benefits:
Having a reliable delivery partner is beneficial to any business. Here are some reasons why a last-mile delivery service is worth considering.
Gain a competitive advantage with it:
According to a 2019 survey, 69% of shoppers purchased more items from one retailer over another because they found the delivery services offered more attractive.
As products become more similar in quality, quantity, and packaging, delivery can be a differentiator for your business.
It also contributes to customer experience and, therefore, revenue, an important determinant of customer retention.
Confirmation of Product:
Some last-mile shipping companies go the extra mile for their customers. For example, Need It Now does more than just forward a package and request a signature.
“We value customer satisfaction. Therefore, wait for the package recipient to open the package and confirm that the delivery is expected before leaving.”
Similarly, you can help the buyer place their luggage in a specific house room for more oversized items.
Reducing damage to items:
If your business sometimes complains about items arriving for some damage, several factors can be at fault. The most common of factors is misuse during transportation.
Last-mile delivery companies have staff with sufficient skills to pay special attention throughout the shipping process.
This service may be a little more expensive than a regular shipping company, but you will receive the goods in good condition. Thus, creating a stronger business reputation and rapport with clients.
It’s a cost-effective solution:
Most last-mile delivery services can handle high-volume deliveries and plan routes before and after drop-off for the day. It’s tedious and cost-effective if you have to deliver it yourself because your business may not be able to fill up a delivery truck on its own.
It’s not uncommon to see huge trucks carry two or three small pieces of luggage and haul them up. Poor planning requires a lot of human resources and time to cross the city for one or two deliveries shows how in-effective delivery costs can be.
By partnering with a shipping company, you can remove your logistics problem and focus on your core business.
In-house delivery also means hiring drivers and logistics, purchasing delivery trucks, and subsequent service and maintenance costs.
Shipping companies have storage to meet their businesses’ long-term and short-term storage needs. Storage can improve efficiency because the product can be quickly shipped out based on demand.
These companies can also schedule deliveries appropriately to ensure all deliveries are made on time. In addition, good staff can play a critical role in training drivers and other logistical training needs. Thus, improving efficiency.
Adaptability to your needs:
Last-mile delivery solutions allow businesses to adjust to their needs in terms of delivery schedules and demand. This solution will enable you to deliver your products to your customers on the schedule best suits you and your customers. In addition, last-mile delivery tracks seasonal order demand trends for your small business.
In the business world, fluctuations are a hot topic. At one point, uninterrupted order requests flow into the business, but orders are significantly lower at other times. This means that when orders are low, a fleet of delivery vehicles can be expensive for your business. Again, too many orders can be overwhelming for small businesses and your resources. You should invest in more delivery resources or avoid fulfilling some of your orders.
Increased speed and turnover:
Business is all about time, and companies cannot have enough. Goods are only beneficial if received on time, which is more important than ever in our society that loves instant gratification. A reliable last-mile delivery partner helps get products to customers faster. Still, the business scales to increase overall inventory turnover to drive business operations and ultimately maximize profits.
Save personnel and resources:
Product delivery is one of the most expensive tasks in the supply chain. It takes a lot of resources like tools and personnel to be successful. These costs can add up and can become costly for small businesses. By hiring a delivery company, you can save yourself the hassle of hiring many people and investing many resources to deliver and increase your profits.