Smart Last Mile: The Art of Delivering Delight Without Burning Your Pockets

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In times when customers can get anything from a pin to full-sized furniture and sizzling hot meals to medicines delivered to their doorsteps, delivery experiences and customer journeys have become extremely crucial. Digitally empowered consumers are not only looking for knowledge on how their packages are shipped and delivered, but they also consider real-time tracking updates as a must-have. On top of that, 62% of customers expect their deliveries to be free and to reach them within three business days.

Also, 70% of consumers look for speedy, convenient, and friendly deliveries and the majority of them expect proactive communication from brands. Hence, it is becoming extremely hard for businesses to stay afloat while catering to the demands and nuances of their customers without violating their bottom lines. Stats reveal that the last mile deliveries account for 53% of total delivery costs, and different types of deliveries, such as same-day delivery, next-day delivery, and few-hours/minutes deliveries, are pressing businesses on all sides. 

But what if we say that it is possible to reduce the last mile delivery costs, diversify your delivery offerings, deliver highly delightful CX and make profits with every delivery you make?

Here, we share four hacks for smart last mile orchestration that would help you achieve all this and much more. So, put your reading shoes on and get started!

4 Ingenious Hacks for Smart Last Mile Delivery Orchestration

#1 – AI-Powered Optimization of Delivery Trips

Smart optimization engines offer hundreds of customizable optimization rules for vehicles, drivers, 3PL selection, and more based on various delivery/shipment/service types and offerings. Thus, businesses can set multiple trip optimization criteria for every type of vehicle, and shipment and can orchestrate highly optimized deliveries as well as scale their operations up and down depending on the seasonal rush and market demand.

Smart optimization of delivery trips reduces the number of deliveries by increasing the number of orders delivered per trip, intelligent order clubbing routines, highly efficient routing, clubbing orders with returns, and more. 

#2 – Real-Time Customer Communication and Automated Alerts

AI-powered last mile delivery management solutions have in-built routines to trigger automated communication/alerts/notifications to multiple relevant stakeholders. These automated alerts/messages can be customized and personalized as per business requirements and serve multiple purposes.

The customers get automated and proactive alerts for all the key milestone events in the entire delivery scenario, the riders get automated alerts for multiple delivery tasks, and managers get automated alerts for all the important events or deviations from expected behavior, such as a rider deviating from a system-generated route. 

Further, all this communication can be accessed, managed, and referenced from a unified, integrated dashboard, which makes it extremely easier for businesses to keep a tab on it.

#3 – Effortless Management of Delivery Events 

One of the costly events in the delivery segment are returns, delivery cancellations, fake deliveries, and delivery re-attempts. Intelligent last mile delivery optimization solutions help businesses manage all these events effortlessly and efficiently in an automated manner. All the delivery allocations are done automatically, and once a rider is out for delivery, an alert is triggered to the customer regarding the same so as to ensure first-attempt delivery success.

In case the customer reschedules a delivery or cancels it, the optimization is done dynamically in real-time to ensure efficiency in the system. Further, if a rider tries to mark a fake delivery attempt, the geofence logic comes into action and prevents them from doing so. Also, every reason marked by a rider in the app for any successful and unsuccessful delivery is validated and authenticated at the customer’s end.

#4 – Smart and Secure Payments, Cash Reconciliation, and PODs

Last mile delivery automation platforms offer highly secure and safe means of transaction management and cash reconciliation and allow the riders to accept payments for COD orders in alternative forms as well. Further, automated cash reconciliation allows businesses to create highly secure means of cash settlement with riders. 

Third-party payment integrations for quick cash settlement and rider payout settlements in the form of collected cash allow them to reduce the empty miles by avoiding the trip a rider has to make just for cash settlement. Another crucial benefit is the automated POD (proof of delivery) feature that allows the customers to share actual proofs of delivery and help further optimize the last mile delivery.

Smart last mile orchestration and delivery automation can help businesses unlock a 12% reduction in mid-mile costs, a 23% reduction in last mile costs, reduce customer complaints by 28%, improve delivery NPS by 18%, and much more.

So, get started with smart last mile delivery platforms and steer your operations toward efficiency, improved profitability, and sustainability. 

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