With consumer loyalty at an all-time low and expectations at an all-time high, it’s essential that retailers do everything they can to stand out from the competition. Here’s how an electronic proof of delivery (ePOD) system can transform your retail business and earn you customer loyalty.
Delivering on the last mile
“The last mile” of the delivery journey is only a small part of the supply chain for most companies. However, it represents the most important part for the consumer. After all, it’s the only part that directly affects them. Their shopping experience depends upon this moment, and if it goes badly your entire business is likely to suffer.
Delivery services have a huge impact on today’s retail experiences. According to IndustryWeek, many online consumers carefully consider delivery services when making purchase decisions. In fact, approximately 16% would shop elsewhere if they experienced just one negative delivery experience.
What a consumer wants
For consumers, there are several aspects that make up a good delivery experience:
- Fast and affordable delivery. The more efficient your delivery supply chain is, the quicker your business can get customer orders to their door, and the more cost-effective it will be. These savings could then be passed directly onto your shoppers.
- Tracking visibility and delivery updates. This offers customers a great level of convenience, and can reduce the need for manned helpdesks and call centres.
- Good support and communication. Every retailers will experience some delivery problems, but it’s how you handle them that makes all the difference. Having customer invoices on hand as well as order information makes it easy to register and resolve any problems.
- Simple returns policies and quick refunds. This can make or break an online retailer’s reputation, as customers expect a convenient service.
Shockingly, many companies still send drivers out with a paper proof of delivery system. However, a lack of the qualities mentioned above could risk these retailers failing to deliver on customer expectations.
Eating out of the palm of your hand
The transport sector is “cutting the wires” and embracing the mobile movement in order to improve efficiency and enhance customer service. “The area outside the four walls is a place where we’re seeing significant levels of adoption,” explains David Krebs, president of enterprise mobility and connected devices at VDC Research.
According to VDC, the leading current or planned mobile transportation applications includes proof of delivery (used by 51% of companies). Krebs states that the transport world is also experiencing a migration from legacy logistics solutions and old operating systems to more modern IT platforms. This means that some companies may be looking to upgrade their current proof of delivery solution.
What to look for in an electronic proof of delivery system
CALIDUS ePOD helps companies to achieve faster, more efficient deliveries with significantly less paperwork and reduced manual data entry. Our solution can be provided on an on-premise basis or as a hosted service, and even integrates with other ERP, TMS and WMS systems to support every aspect of logistics operations.
Staff can monitor schedule changes via the browser-based ePOD enquiry screen, delivery documents can be automatically emailed to customers, and customer queries can be answered rapidly thanks to real-time debrief. As a result, it’s possible to ensure consistently high levels of customer service.