Same day delivery revenue is expected to reach $620 million, which is six times more than what it was in 2014; according to the principle research analyst at eMarketer, the leading research firm for digital marketers. While the service was prevalent even in 2014, Amazon changed its scope entirely when it made the service free in May 2015. As of May 2015, Amazon delivers on the same day for free for Prime members in 14 metropolitan areas, reported Los Angeles Times. The membership itself will continue to be affordable at an annual charge of $99. Additionally, Amazon has also started to deliver Fresh products in large cities and in doing so, has owned the entire value chain, including “last mile delivery.”
A Trend that is Catching On
Only days after Amazon announced free same day delivery, Google launched Shopping Express in Los Angeles and New York, which provides same day delivery via select retailers. Add to the list eBay, which acquired the UK start-up Shutl, which came into prominence for making use of local couriers to deliver goods in a 1-2 hours window, and you have eBbay Now, delivering on the same day using Shutl's infrastructure and IT.
While the service is still in its nascent stage, it is bound to grow and become the norm, since it is already setting the bar for customer expectations. Technological advancements too have multiple tiers now – supply chain management through delivery software has become the norm, with the customer's demands to know the status of their order having nuanced considerably. However, technology is not limited to just information now. With the sci-fi come-to-life delivery by drones option materializing, as in the case of Amazon Prime Air, the sky is the limit for truly disruptive logistics.
Other Areas Fueled by Disruptive Logistics
Omnichannel Fulfillment: “Omni-channel Fulfillment is the key driver of growth in the warehouse management market,” reported Forbes in June 2014. A year later, with same day delivery becoming the rage, it is becoming part and parcel of the experience. In a world where customers want to buy online and pick-up at a store; try on at the store and have the desired variation delivered to their door; or place an order online and expect to not just be apprised of whether it is in stock but also what stage of delivery it is at and exactly when it will reach them or for that matter, buy online and return at the store if dissatisfied, multiple channels of fulfillment have to work seamlessly to achieve customer satisfaction via high speed and in cost-effective methods.
Data Integration with Customer Interface: Traditionally, data collected through delivery software or dispatch management software as it is also known as, was available for the purpose of logistics management and was either entirely invisible to the customer, or only visible to the extent of online tracking services. However, the fact that customers might now want end to end control of the delivery process will also have to be factored into disruptive logistical plans. For example, a customer may seek same day delivery and still have the ability to change the destination real time. This will require the logistics providers and e-commerce platforms to be fully integrated and have a customer interface with constant real time updates. Delivery software will not just be deployed to ensure value chain visibility for the supplier, but also for full disclosure to the customer.