Top Trends in Logistics: Being Customer Centric
Here at Eleets 3PL, we've seen firsthand how rapidly the logistics industry has evolved in recent years. Currently, one of the biggest trends is the focus on being customer centric. Consumer demands are changing, and 3pl logistics firms are changing with it. Here's a look at what being customer centric really means these days, and how that can affect the way you do business.
Last Mile Delivery
When a customer places an online order, the products needed are found thanks to a robust warehouse management system and employees that can “pick” the correct products. From there, the order is usually shipped to a major distribution hub and eventually makes its way to the customer's doorstep. The focus of last mile logistics is getting that item to the customer as quickly as possible, and that usually means figuring out the best possible way to ship products to customers in a wide range of regions.
Is going with carriers like UPS or USPS the best idea? Have regulations affecting how you ship changed? Are there infrastructure issues in the given area? Last mile logistics focuses on all of this. By offering a number of ways to ship products that “last mile” to the customer, a logistics provider or retailer can differentiate itself from the rest of the pack. A customer is more likely to opt for a company that gets their product to them without a hassle, or offers options like convenient pickup locations.
This area is evolving rapidly and last mile delivery will surely continue to be a big focus for retailers and 3pl logistics firms in the near future.
Customers want to know that they can return an item if they don't need or want it. More people are buying things online that they traditionally used to buy in stores. We're talking about clothes, shoes, and other items that you would normally try on before buying. As people buy items like these online, they may run into issues with sizing or comfort. They want to know that they can return something if they need to. If they don't have that confirmation, then they're just not going to shop at that online retailer.
That's why some companies have made it so much easier to return things. Making it easy to print out return labels and send back unwanted products is a must. Shoppers will browse a retailer's website with confidence knowing they can return any unwanted items, and the order fulfillment firms that these retailers outsource to have to adjust.
For this big trend in online orders and logistics, you can probably thank Amazon. Part of being customer centric is delivering the products people want, when they want them. As a result of services like Amazon Prime, where most products can be shipped to a customer in just two days, retailers have responded with their own similar programs.
That means that a logistics company needs to keep up by leveraging cost effective tech, a solid warehouse management system, and skilled employees. With these assets, being customer centric won't be a problem at all. Reach out to the experts at Eleets 3PL when it’s time for your business to update your logistics. We can create a custom solution to accommodate your needs.