There is no way around it. E-Commerce has fundamentally changed logistics strategies and the industry in general. Today’s customers have come to expect their products to be delivered fast, and more importantly, free. In order to stay competitive, companies need to identify, and then implement ways to get customers exactly what they want as quickly as possible for as little as possible. More companies are finding it necessary to invest heavily in the latest logistics technologies to keep up with changing buying behaviors and customer demands. Here are three of the major trends in e-commerce affecting logistics in 2018:
Last-Mile Delivery and Logistics E-Commerce
It’s widely known that the “last mile” of the supply chain usually ends up being the most costly and inefficient part of the cycle for a number of reasons. The last mile often results in a high number of failed delivery attempts because customers are not home when the driver arrives. Even though most packages can be left at the customer’s front door without incident, many goods require signatures, special handling or refrigeration. Failed delivery attempts result in wasted fuel, lost travel time, and unnecessary spending of payroll dollars. In addition, in some residential areas, homes may be too far apart to make efficient delivery routes possible.
Fortunately, there is an answer. There are last-mile delivery service providers ready and waiting to remedy this situation using electronic logistics solutions for effective distribution, including Merchandise Warehouse. These providers bridge the gap between customer demand for fast and low cost delivery and smaller retailers who need to find alternative options to meet those customer needs. Last-mile delivery service providers use the latest technology to help them meet the demands critical to both customers and merchants. This trend provides courier-level services that make use of software with real time delivery tracking, and efficient routing of deliveries.
Big Data Providers: The Answer to Logistics E-Commerce
For years, logistics companies have been being told they need to become completely automated by making full use of all electronic logistics available to be competitive in today’s market. One of the latest trends affecting logistics this year is Big Data technology. But what actually is a Big Data provider?
The answer is simple. Big Data providers help companies collect huge amounts of data, and then analyze it in real time, so they can make intelligent decisions about how to increase the efficiency of their supply chain on the fly. The choice to use Big Data is one of this year’s most powerful logistics trends because it’s more than analyzing large amounts of gathered data.
Like last-mile delivery providers, Big Data providers help merchants optimize delivery routes, and gives transparency to every phase of the logistic cycle. Using Big Data technology also helps companies take advantage of predictive software to forecast future market behavior. It offers customers easy, integrated mobile payment options. Perhaps, the most important advantage of this trend is that Big Data equips merchants with software that helps them determine exactly what customers want and expect from them.
Drones are Flying into the World of Logistics E-Commerce
We all knew it was coming. It was just a matter of time. And, we were right. We’re not saying every logistics company needs to run out and stockpile droves of delivery drones. But now that Amazon has announced their intent to acquire a fleet of unmanned drones for residential delivery of goods, it may be time to take this logistics trend seriously.
Since most customers view Amazon and Amazon Prime as the gold standard when it comes to speed of delivery, logistic companies would do well to at least take notice. Regardless if a company decides drone logistics is right for them or not, logistics companies would be smart to continue to search for the latest, fastest and most reliable logistics methods available today.
As leaders in the cold chain industry, Merchandise Warehouse is committed to shining the spotlight on new trends affecting logistics as they develop. From Big Data providers, to last-mile delivery solutions, to product-delivering drones, there are real solutions to put your electronic logistics strategies on the right track. In the meantime, contact us today for more information on how to make your warehousing, logistics and supply chain process more efficient.