The global retail landscape is transforming, and retail sales are dramatically improving. According to Statista, global retail sales is projected to reach approximately 31.7 trillion U.S. dollars by 2025. Most retailers choose an omnichannel model to facilitate online and offline shopping and deliver a superior customer experience. However, challenges such as high delivery costs, lack of real-time tracking, staff shortage, and more make it difficult for retailers to meet stringent delivery SLAs while maintaining a healthy bottom line.
To overcome these delivery-related challenges, scale delivery operations, and venture into new markets, retailers partner with different courier providers. Logistics service providers offer seamless and cost-efficient delivery management services. However, partnering with multiple 3PLs involves various challenges, such as lack of control over consignments, lack of transparency, and more, which impacts customer experience and delivery costs.
Therefore, it is imperative for a retailer to use a tech-powered platform, such as a courier aggregator or 3PL management solution, to seamlessly manage and monitor multiple courier providers. Here are the four ways how such smart courier management solutions can help retailers:
For a retailer, it is challenging to decide which courier partner is suitable for a particular type of delivery. Manually choosing the courier company is feasible with a limited number of orders. However, as the business grows and order volume increases, it becomes challenging to manage this task manually.
Advanced courier management solutions have an AI-based allocation engine that considers multiple parameters such as shipment type, SKU type, best SLA, order type, and more to choose the most suitable courier provider for an order.
Lack of control and the inability to track consignments can directly impact the cost of delivery and customer experience. With a smart 3PL management platform, retailers can track all their shipments, shipped via the same or different courier providers, from a single dashboard.
A smart courier aggregator solution also offers detailed analytics of each activity associated with the delivery process. It keeps all stakeholders informed by automatically sending alerts on each delivery milestone, which is important to maintain transparency among stakeholders.
Not all 3PLs use the same format to send delivery-related alerts or delivery milestones to stakeholders. One courier provider may send “your order is out for delivery”, whereas the other may send “parcel is out for delivery”. A lack of standardization makes it difficult to have centralized control over multiple shipments.
A smart 3PL management platform gives a retailer the freedom to standardize such delivery-related messages. Irrespective of which 3PL, customers will receive the delivery alert in the format specified by the retailer.
For a retailer, it is important to monitor 3PL’s performance and SLA adherence to set KPIs for performance benchmarking and evaluate the business value delivered by each courier provider. Smart courier management solutions offer data-driven insights such as the percentage of on-time deliveries, the number of successful or failed deliveries, and more.
Such advanced solutions also facilitate NDR management and arresting fake delivery attempts. Leveraging those insights, retailers can make strategic decisions to find out the most profitable or top-performing logistics partner.
Advanced courier management solutions empower retailers to choose the best courier partner based on critical factors such as price, returns management, location, etc. From quick carrier onboarding, allocating deliveries to the right 3PL, monitoring the leg-to-leg movement of multiple shipments, and looking into customers’ feedback, AI-powered logistics provider solutions offer everything.