There was a strong trend in growth in last-mile delivery pre-pandemic, which was proving challenging for businesses but also driving innovations. Then came 2020, and the demand for delivery services exploded. If you were a small e-commerce business owner with your own delivery system during last year, you were at an advantage. But think of the neighborhood grocery store, which had to provide increased slots for home deliveries or risk going out of business. At the peak of the pandemic, online grocery spending in the US surged to about 15% from the previous 3 to 4% levels. These businesses had to resort to gig economy services as the last resort, escalating costs and strains on the system never seen before.
While lockdowns have eased, consumer preferences for online shopping aren’t expected to decline. For instance, in furnishings and appliances, while 46% of consumers using online channels for purchase pre-pandemic, now 60% will do so in the post-Covid-19 world. As a business owner, you now need to have a sound approach to meet the surging demand for home deliveries. Whether you are a retail store or a logistics company, you need a robust courier software to meet customer expectations and drive true differentiation.
Picking the Right Courier Software
Dynamic Route Optimization Feature
With soaring petrol and diesel prices globally, it is more important than ever to reduce your vehicle operating costs and increase dispatcher productivity. Not to mention, that customers demand same-day deliveries. In the pre-pandemic era, a quarter of customers would pay a premium for that. A route optimization feature will help you reduce fuel costs, overall maintenance costs, and the risk of exposure for delivery partners. They can complete their jobs in the shortest possible time.
Easy API Integrations
If the software has standardized integration functionalities, it can improve your prospects to capture new business. Suppose a low-volume local shipper would like to collaborate with you and reduce your burden of increased door-to-door delivery demands. They can simply connect to the system through API integration, dynamically create orders, get quotes, and track shipments. This can enable them to grow their business too, creating a win-win partnership.
Dashboard Reporting in Detail
You might want to get detailed dashboard reports on your device, with real-time and historic data on a user-friendly interface. The managers will be able to focus on various KPIs to drive efficiency, by visualizing and analyzing data. They will have increased access to time-sensitive information.
Automation and Contactless Technologies
Contactless technologies not only enhance dispatcher productivity but also are crucial to surviving in the post-pandemic world. Dispatchers should be able to find the best driver for delivery based on pre-defined rules and real-time conditions. Geofence automation can further elevate driver accountability and compliance through arrival and departure timestamps. Further, if a package is left without a signature a visual proof of delivery (VPOD), can help you assure customers.
With customer expectations changing dramatically post-pandemic, the right courier software can help you drive loyalty, accountability, and growth in the bottom lines.