Regardless of your role in the supply chain, transportation involves a lot of components, but the goal is the same: satisfied customers. Enterprises, e-commerce companies, and last-mile delivery providers ultimately want to provide a good delivery customer experience. That’s the mission this holiday shipping season.
As the e-commerce piece of the total retail sales puzzle evolves, options for last-mile delivery continue to increase. Shippers must focus on the quality of those experiences and optimize their logistics, including those last-mile processes. Doing so allows you to keep up with consumers’ high expectations and compete in the market.
3 reasons Why E-Commerce & Last Mile Delivery Expectations Are High
1. Expectations of Consumers
2. Expectations of 3PLs’ Shipper Customers
3. Expectations of Drivers/Last Mile Companies
Why Is Delivery Customer Experience in Logistics Important?
According to Air Cargo News, 61% of supply chain leaders expect customer experience to replace cost as the top differentiator within a few years. Good delivery customer experience supports company success markers like gaining more customers and moving more freight.
Why focus on good delivery customer experience? Here’s what it does:
- Helps earn customer loyalty and maintain clients.
- Boosts the brand image, as satisfied and happy customers are good promoters.
- Creates long-term customer retention.
- Contributes to a customer-centered forward and reverse logistics strategy – most likely resulting in less friction, less waste, and a reduction of total shipping logistics costs
11 Areas for Focus to Improve Your Delivery Customer Experience
- Consider the end goal and work backward: Consider customer needs and expectations, such as set timelines and fair prices, and figure out ways to meet those.
- Deploy technology: Logistics technology like a transportation management system (TMS) helps shippers plan, book, manage, and execute shipments.
- Integrate technology: Integrate the TMS with other systems such as the shopping cart, ERP, and WMS. A TMS using real-time data from numerous relevant sources creates better visibility and efficiency.
- Optimize last mile routes: Create more efficient last mile routes designed to reduce costs, improve efficiency metrics, and fit customer expectations. A TMS optimizes routes through benefits like better delivery visibility, streamlined operations, and enhanced driver productivity.
- Use a TMS that’s omnimodal capable: The right TMS helps shippers find the most shipping options available, including last mile delivery options, to meet customer demand. It does this through increased visibility, dynamic rerouting, document management, and other aspects of omnimodal shipping optimization.
- Get access to tracking and status visibility: Customers want to know the exact timeline so they can track an order’s shipping and delivery. Improved shipping visibility through a TMS helps shippers provide these updates to customers. Customer portals give customers direct access and visibility to tracking data.
- Be dynamic: This means dynamic routing, dynamic workflows, and other methods to stay flexible, strategic, and responsive to customers.
- Consider returns and reverse logistics: Have a plan for efficient and omnichannel customer returns. Customers expect return service as part of a good shopping experience. A good TMS helps shippers plan reverse logistics.
- Provide multiple delivery options: Technology enables shippers to see more options in final mile carriers and services and enhances last mile logistics strategies to provide customers with more shipping options.
- Be ready for claims resolution: Freight claims are part of the shipping process and solving delivery problems for customers. A TMS ready to support freight claims improves the process for shippers and customers.
- Add extra customer experience touches: Reach out to customers after delivery with personal touches like “How did we do?” surveys, delivery pictures, and white glove service.
Back an Effective Delivery Strategy with the Right Technology
Customer experience is the key component of shipping and logistics.
Having a customer-focused process and utilizing technology to enable that process creates a strategy that satisfies customers and creates a competitive advantage.
Read our MercuryGate eBook for a close look at solving the final mile delivery.