The last mile is important, but let’s not forget about the rest of the trip

(Source: Bigstock)

Retail has changed a lot in the last year. And while it’s clear that a lot of that had to do with the pandemic, shutting down bricks-and-mortar, much of the change came from consumers expecting more from retailers’ with regard to their online offers.

And, truth be told, they still do. 

While a lot of businesses jumped on the online delivery bandwagon during the last year, there are very few that are actually doing it well. From a consumer’s point of view, their experience with a brand begins at a purchase and ends when they receive their goods, but a lot of businesses finalise the payment transaction and then outsource delivery responsibility to a logistics firm and barely have any idea of what happens next. 

But, as customers increasingly want up-to-date information regarding brands’ ability to supply and deliver, this obscured relationship doesn’t lead to a good experience where it counts.

“There are so many ways to move freight nowadays,” said Subtrux chief executive Chris Ritsovski. 

“And what happens when you pass delivery on to another business is that you’re not effectively managing the customer’s experience in the most crucial stage. You’re relying on someone else to handle that for you, so their experience is out of your control.”

This doesn’t have to be the outcome or experience when you outsource delivery. It can work successfully but only when your delivery partner is transparent and cooperative. Ritsovski’s business, Subtrux, is a delivery management platform that provides transparency to its clients through live satellite tracking and digital POD contactless delivery, whilst allowing brands full access to a suite of data about past and ongoing deliveries all in real time.

This not only helps a business to better understand their own processes, but also gives an idea of how many deliveries it can handle on average in an hour, a day, or a week – allowing it to plan and budget more effectively and take the financial pressure off simply paying for the fuel used and seeing where the chips land after the fact. 

For example, Australian bedding retailer BevMarks made the switch to Subtrux and saw processes like route planning, that once took hours, become instantaneous. Having access to full tracking information live was also a game changer. Now, knowing where their trucks are at any one moment, how long they spend at a customer’s location and the most efficient delivery routes enable the business to operate more efficiently and effectively. Utilising other features of the Delivery Management System also enabled the seamless management of the movement of inventory between stores and distribution centers which was previously fraught with challenges.

“Once you set your business parameters [you should] know your average cost per kilometre, and should be aware if this increases – this is something you can resolve while it is happening, rather than two weeks later when it’s too late and you are paying the price,” Ritsovski said. 

“Most businesses don’t want to know about deliveries – they believe that’s for the logistics companies to manage – but imagine what it can do for a business to understand the scope of its delivery offer, manage it efficiently and offer a consistent and transparent customer experience.

“Our job is to help businesses understand that, and to empower them to take ownership of their customer experience by effectively managing their last mile delivery offer.”

This can help brands to manage the entire customer journey rather than just claiming responsibility for the sale at the beginning and issuing a delivery notification at the end. It can also offer a great deal of delivery insights and ways to reduce waste that not just impact the bottom line but the environment as well, such as idle time, kms travelled and utilising returning vehicles empty loads. With all this functionality and transparency of data, businesses can ultimately reduce the cost of deliveries whilst maximising the potential gains in all the areas that truly matter. 

To find out about how Subtrux can help your business, click here to set up a demo today.

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