The coronavirus pandemic has lent authenticity to one of science's most fundamental claims of adaptation. As billions were forced to stay indoors, online shopping of durables, foods and groceries skyrocketed to phenomenal heights.
Businesses which thrive on door-to-door, last-mile deliveries had to grapple with the problem of social distancing norms to safeguard their personnel while providing satisfactory services to their customers. Keeping in mind the various health hazards which the pandemic posed, a majority of businesses adapted to the new world order by bringing in innovative changes to their delivery mechanisms, out of which was conceived the idea of contactless deliveries.
Contactless delivery systems are predicated on the simple mantra of reducing physical contact between customers and delivery personnel.
Online marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart and food aggregators were the first ones to actually implement these techniques. Simply put, where once a human would be standing in front of your door with the delivery package in their hands, now when you open the door, you're more likely to find the package kept on the threshold with no one in sight.
This process lays tremendous emphasis on the sanitization of work-spaces, warehouses, equipment, packaged goods and delivery partners. Different delivery items are packaged separately so that the delivery personnel's contact with the package is minimized as well.
Although "Zero-Contact Delivery" or "No Contact Delivery" options are only available with digital stores and marketplaces, they offer several advantages to all parties, both in terms of safety and efficiency.
Suppliers lagging behind in digitizing their operations would now have to get things done, in order to survive in this market.
Data collected from online transactions can offer useful insights to the supplier on many levels. Product preferences, price preferences, quality, brand inclination and a lot more can be found by diligently analyzing purchase data.
High risk of transmission that comes with cash exchanges can be mitigated by using contactless payments via online transactions. These transactions are safe and encrypted, and for further verification, a One Time Password (OTP) or Personal Identification Number (PIN) set up too is in place.
This is one of the reasons why this mode of delivery is not applicable to Cash-On-Delivery items.
Most retailers have now inculcated a system wherein the buyer can get to choose a convenient time for their delivery, which makes this experience all the more satisfactory.
Having an online presence pays its premium in the form of increased public engagement and therefore, better sales. Having a well functioning site with a user-friendly interface attracts more customers.
Contactless delivery options allow the customer to view order details like merchant verification and delivery personnel health status at any point in time. Such last-mile solutions help a lot in building customer confidence.
Contactless deliveries differ only slightly from normal deliveries. The main difference is how buyers receive the package. Most companies notify customers before order confirmation itself that they'll receive the package kept on their house's threshold, and advise them to keep it clean.
Once the delivery person reaches the address, they drop the package off at a suitable place and notify the customer via text or call. Some firms make it mandatory for delivery partners to click a picture before the package has been picked up by the customer, and also later, with the customer.
Some retailers also have a "Delivery Instruction" option, wherein the customer can leave instructions for the delivery personnel like when and where to leave the package as per the buyer's convenience.
Contactless deliveries have proven beneficial and have gradually become the norm. The pressure of health concerns has forced operations to move in this trajectory. Along with ensuring minimal contact between the delivery personnel and the customer, contactless delivery options also offer other incidental benefits in the long run, both to the buyer as well as the seller.
FarEye is empowering retailers, food chains and eCommerce businesses across the world to execute seamless contactless deliveries. To know how, signup for a quick demo here.