Did you know that last-mile delivery is one of the most expensive routes of the supply chain resulting in 40-50% of total parcel delivery costs and up to 50% of fleet carbon emissions?
In order to keep pace with prospering online shopping, companies need to fulfill high shipping standards to remain competitive in the market of modern eCommerce.
With customer expectations constantly increasing, last mile delivery software investment is more than profitable – there are software products that can improve final mile logistics resolving challenges like slower travel speed, lost deliveries or returns etc. and facilitate process at each stage providing you with full control over delivery journey from your warehouse to the customers’ front door.
All of these make reducing the expenses of last mile delivery the prime goal of all retailers.
What is last mile delivery?
Last mile delivery includes delivery of a product from a storage to a customer (B2B or B2C) upon receiving an order. Although there are more stages in logistics, the last mile can be referred to as the fundamental to the entire product journey.
Since 84% of customers would refuse to buy again after a bad delivery, improving last mile delivery is central to the company’s positioning on the market and acquiring new customers.
The 5 biggest last mile delivery challenges
First, you need to identify what makes this stage so challenging for most businesses. Some of the troubles you may encounter include:
- Increasing delivery expenses – fuel and labor costs, vehicle maintenance etc. plus customer wishes may impact the final mile delivery cost. Considering that almost 50% of online shoppers abandon their cart if additional costs are included, this burdens companies with even more expenses on delivery.
- Long delivery time – meeting a more accurate delivery time frame will increase customers’ satisfaction. However, it is difficult when faced with traffic, weather conditions or other circumstances that cannot be predicted.
- Poor route planning– Unexpected roadblocks, jams and similar can be avoided with last-mile route optimization. You can reach better efficiency with logistics apps which receive real time updates. If the route is planned inefficiently and not updated with source data, it will lead to shopping delays or higher costs.
- Delivery failures – even if final mile delivery is greatly organized, it can fail due to unforeseen reasons. Although you cannot do much in such cases, companies should focus on mitigating similar factors like inaccurate addresses etc.
- Transparency needs – today, customers require real-time updates on the current situation with their order, making delivery visible to them at all times. It may present another hurdle for companies to overcome.
Last mile delivery management software products help businesses systematize and conduct delivery accurately, avoiding or resolving most procedural challenges.
The logistics products we develop are customizable, meaning you can adjust it to your delivery procedures and cases of your company. More importantly, such apps will improve every aspect of final mile delivery.
How a logistics app can improve main delivery aspects
In order to fulfill last mile requirements like overview of each stage in the process, a solid last-mile delivery app should include the following features:
- Real time tracking – use of maps to inform users about their package location
- Delivery scheduling – customers can choose adequate time slots in align with their preferences and availability
- Route planning – optimal route building per current traffic situation, weather and similar factors.
- Notifications – push notifications or SMS alerts informing users about delivery time or changes on the estimation time.
- Returns and exchanges – allow easy returns or exchanges within the app, creating return labels and coordinating return process stages.
- Proof of delivery – electronic signatures, photos or other media verification to confirm successful delivery.
- Communication platforms – chatbots and messaging systems allowing users with enquiries, order changes and resolution of the same.
- Ratings and reviews – users can rate delivery experiences and leave feedback, helping you improve your service and customer satisfaction.
The main delivery aspects that can be improved through the utilization of a last mile logistics solution are as follows:
Route planning and navigation
Technology is here to help create most efficient routes to the end customers given the location, current traffic situation or traffic jams etc.
Modern last mile products give drivers an opportunity to quickly adapt to any on-road encounters, no matter if it is an unexpected roadblock or change in recipient’s address.
With integration of last mile technology, you can use routes that optimize costs, time and energy.
With delivery, drivers usually have GPS devices that constantly transmit the location of their delivery vehicle. By using a tracking link, shoppers can see how far their package is and how soon they will receive it. This makes a huge part of last-mile delivery apps – to help customers keep track of their parcels.
This feature greatly improves the sense of assurance with customers, since they have been given a sense of control. Not only that, but tracking is important for accountability as it helps prevent incidents or theft.
Interaction with customers is an integral part of last mile delivery – in case of any changes in delivery process, drivers and recipients should be informed.
Last mile delivery provides an opportunity to manage each way of communication with shoppers, including the following:
Notifications – order confirmations, delivery times, updates, delay alerts or confirmations on successful delivery.
Communication channels – enabling drivers to connect with customers like his phone number, email or any other information provided by a certain shopper.
Self-service options – used for providing delivery instructions, changing delivery locations or rescheduling deliveries etc.
Feedback – automated prompts for recipients to share their experience and satisfaction.
Delivery efficiency & scalability
With last mile delivery, utilizing software products will streamline the organization of deliveries as it automates routine tasks like notifying customers on order updates, calculating delivery time frames, route optimizations or feedback gathering.
The data will help you allocate your resources more wisely, shortening idle time and maximizing usage of resources. The overall productivity will skyrocket and facilitate your future scalability.
Last mile software products collect a great amount of data during delivery like routes, customer choices, vehicle and driver performance, fuel usage, punctuality and more.
Such information can be harnessed by companies to fine-tune their operations, improve customer satisfaction and make data-driven decisions.
The information can be applied also for more practical aspects, like market predictions and stock management.
Get start with building a last mile delivery app
Final last mile delivery makes the core of the business operations and the same is for last mile delivery technology.
These delivery solutions are fuel-efficient and can save labor costs. It is estimated that automation can reduce the last-mile delivery cost by 40-50%.
Although it may be challenging, find a reliable technical partner and enter the market prepared, as the right technology will help you not only increase customer satisfaction but also improve your brand reputation.
We can help you with development of such software product.
Contact us and let’s bring your idea to life!