“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”
– Bill Gates
Do you know what most successful companies have in common? They all focus on delivering a delightful customer experience. As we move into a future dominated by on-demand delivery services, customers will become more demanding and it will become hard to convince them to buy from your brand if you have a poor customer satisfaction rate.
As a result, modern-day organizations are transforming the way of doing business. They are adopting methods unheard of and are putting loads of effort into transforming not just the buying experience but also in improving the last-mile delivery experience for their customers.
So, maybe you’ve had your business for a long time and are doing well with your existing business model. But suddenly, a new kid on the block sets up shop, which does not have a big brick and mortar store like yours but is still pulling more customers. What is this brand doing that you are not? The short answer is, they are delivering a customer experience that you have not looked into so far.
‘But I am offering delivery services through a vendor. What else can I do?’ You might ask.
Third-party delivery companies are only as good as the last-mile delivery they offer. Many times they tend to goof up the deliveries and without proper tracking, you remain unaware of the damage it causes for your brand.
Moreover, they tend to become complacent and expensive if you choose to ignore any other vendors and continue giving them business despite the damage they are causing.
Research by American Express states that around 86% of the customers are willing to pay extra if you offer them a better customer experience.
In fact, a study conducted by Temkin Group revealed that companies with an annual income of $1 billion can add $700 million more from their business in three years if they invest in improving their customer experience.
Now, we understand that adding an in-house delivery arm to your business might not be financially viable for every business. But what you can do is find means to optimize the existing on-demand logistics you use for your business.
How does that help? By making small changes you can get a better idea about the delivery journey of products from your location to the customers. Here are a few areas in which a delivery management system adds value:
- Last-mile delivery
- AI-powered route optimization
- Live to track consignments
- Easy order management
- Open communication with delivery teams
- Reporting and analytics
- Ratings and reviews from customers
If you can optimize these components of delivery by even 50%, you can attract more business from satisfied customers, create brand advocates by offering them loyalty bonuses and increase your revenue substantially.
What are the key components of an exceptional customer experience?
While the big shots like Amazon are now capable of delivering products the same day in metropolitan cities, you might not be able to achieve the same. But that does not mean that you cannot deliver the same stellar customer experience.
Here are a few interesting facts from Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report about what the customers expect from a business these days.
- 76% of the people expect you to identify their needs and expectations. Once they have placed an order online, they do not expect to worry about their orders and expect a hassle-free delivery
- They want to stay updated about the status of their package and want to receive regular updates through SMS or email notifications
69% of customers expect the same level of service as Amazon and if they have a bad experience they are likely to spend their money on Amazon instead
- 62% of customers are likely to share their bad experiences with others. Having a consistently bad reputation simply your brand’s reputation
Ready to find out more about the key elements of delivering an exceptional delivery experience?
Now that we know what the customers expect, it is time to dive into the key elements of delivering an exceptional customer experience.
Whether you are aiming to elevate your existing in-house delivery service or want to add a new set of features to your third-party delivery provider, the following tips will help you get on the right path of delivering a delightful customer experience:
Offer Contactless Delivery:
It is one of the most crucial factors in the post-pandemic era of business. Contactless delivery ensures the safety of your customers and delivery teams alike. If you are not already doing so, it is time to opt for contactless delivery of products.
Adopt digital proof of delivery with automated notifications to all parties involved. Additionally, delivery tracking encourages the customers to not leave their packages unattended for too long.
Automation makes lives easier and nearly 77% of customers have a positive outlook towards a brand that offers useful information to them via push notifications or SMS. You can allow them to choose how they would like to receive their order’s updates and send automated notifications.
Integrate eCommerce and Delivery Softwares:
If you already have an eCommerce platform, it is a good idea to integrate with the logistics arm of your business. By integrating the two, you enable your customers to buy products, choose the delivery options and pay for the products using multiple payment methods.
By integrating the two platforms you can feed information into the delivery management system directly from your eCommerce platform and optimize them to make the process more efficient and cost-effective.
Do Some Branding:
Cheap delivery trucks might be considered the norm but they don’t come anywhere close to a branded delivery vehicle. Customers are delighted to see a vehicle from their favourite eCommerce store that contributes a great deal towards delivering an exceptional customer experience.
Offer Free Delivery:
Nearly 53% of customers are of the view that discounted or free delivery options dominate their decision making when buying a product. And when 60% of the customers are ready to pay a premium price for faster delivery, why not capitalize on it and offer free delivery if they make a purchase worth a preset amount.
Optimize Routes to Save Money and Deliver Faster:
With an AI-powered route optimization system, you can manage all your deliveries in a particular geographical area and deliver them as quickly as possible.
Assigning orders randomly to different delivery agents wastes precious time in picking up the packages. In fact, it increases the expense due to unnecessary fuel consumption and extra man-hours spent on travel.
So, when you determine the route for packages in a geographical area, you can inform the customers about the same. Delivery teams can deliver more packages in less time and the customers can always be available to receive their orders, creating a win-win situation for everyone involved.
Today, you can expect to receive a handwritten note from the sellers to their customers as it adds to the customer experience and gives a personal touch to the entire transaction.
On-demand logistics can transform your existing business. Order delivery is no longer a “nice-add on” but a necessity for a brand to succeed. You can always start your own in-house delivery as you scale up and create multiple touchpoints to deliver an exceptional customer experience.
What are you waiting for? Optimize the last-mile delivery and improve the delivery experience to build a positive reputation and increase your organization’s revenue manifolds.