Time is valuable and so consumers demand their deliveries to be as quick as possible. But is the value of speedy delivery really what we need? Costs are skyrocketing and logistics providers and retailers are scratching their heads about what is the point. Would we see a slow down in the delivery process? Would consumers be happy about it and what other innovations are coming?
One of the most prominent changes in the last mile has been the evolving expectations of consumers, irrespective of whether they fall within the B2B or B2C categories. Gone are the days of rigid delivery schedules and limited options. Today’s consumers crave flexibility, a shift that has presented both opportunities and challenges for the delivery and logistics sector.
‘Trying to achieve even faster one day and same day deliveries seems to have turned the corner with logistics delivery makers acknowledging that the added costs and stress introduced into the system isn’t valued as highly enough to warrant the additional costs and stresses on the system,’ explains Mark Thomas from Ridecell
‘Consumers have become a lot more focused on speed, but quality and service is still a major differentiator. Things have become a little bit more rigid for the delivery and logistics provider and they have to tread a fine line because it has become harder to meet those expectations,’ adds Gary Rosier-Taylor from Descartes Systems Group .
How to solve the challenge
‘The biggest challenge in the last mile of logistics is finding the delicate balance between competing demands, including speed, convenience, price, and sustainability,’ agrees Elizabeth Selby from Bexley Beaumont .
‘Last-mile delivery service providers can harness real-time data to optimize the delivery process and provide reporting for the whole trail from warehouse to the consumers’ door. Real-time tracking also empowers logistics companies to offer customers transparency on the status of their order and feel involved in the delivery process, says Simon Seeger, Managing director, Bettermile.
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While the strides are commendable in the direction of eco-friendliness, achieving a wholly green and seamless last mile remains challenging. The balance between environmental concerns, speed, and cost is intricate and requires continuous effort and innovation.
Enhancing the last mile experience grows customer loyalty and trust. Delivery visibility and predictability ensures transparency at all stages of delivery. By keeping customers informed through real-time tracking and proactive communication, brands reduce the anxiety associated with waiting by setting realistic expectations and preemptively addressing potential issues.