COVID-19 has introduced the world to unprecedented lockdowns and shutdowns. Strict stay-at-home orders from national and state governments have cut out the joys of travel, shopping, or even enjoying a simple meal outdoors.
Retailers had been struggling with increased competition, skyrocketing rentals, and cheaper foreign alternatives even before the Coronavirus struck.
Post COVID-19, social distancing, a restricted number of in-store shoppers, shortened business hours and other preventive measures have brought about partial or complete closure of retail outlets. Famous retail outlets like Neiman Marcus, J Crew, Pier 1 Imports and JCPenny have already filed for bankruptcy during the pandemic.
The retail industry has had to undergo a swift and sudden change due to online ordering and delivery. All retailers have had to enhance or strengthen their online presence. Just putting up a website, with a payment mechanism will no longer cut it. Customers are expecting same-day delivery of goods or even same-hour delivery for food, grocery and other essential items.
In its 2020 retail forecast, the National Retail Federation predicted that sales this year would rise 3.5% to 4.1% to more than $3.9 trillion, despite uncertainty around the COVID-19 outbreak. During this pandemic, successful retailers worldwide are using the mantra - home deliveries have to be made, and customers have to be served. With most people stuck at home, there has been an immense spike in daily home delivery requests, comparable to festive or bargain spikes.
Most retailers cannot might find it challenging tomanage their own dispatch and delivery service like Amazon. To still be successful, many US retailers have opted to choose the right dispatching software platform. Such platforms have built-in algorithmic route-optimization, performance management and forecasting modules. These ensure zero delays, a decrease in costs for the same number of deliveries, predictive timelines and a reduction in the average time of deliveries.
The key advantages of using a dispatch management platform are:
The software overcomes the problem of unreliable delivery agents by crowdsourcing them. Being short-staffed themselves, retailers can let the platform chose the drivers while re-allocating employees to prepare orders for timely dispatch.
Based on the closest available driver, the order is automatically scheduled to be picked up for delivery, decreasing lag times and driver time-offs.
Same day delivery for both last-minute or scheduled orders can be made with optimal handling and re-routing on-the-go. Fleet and vehicle location tracking mechanisms further reduce the gap between dispatch and routing, leading to faster deliveries.
The platform possesses the ability to monitor the performance of delivery agents by providing real-time information on the number of deliveries, ratings & reviews, the time taken per delivery and a lot more, providing complete transparency of delivery.
Intelligent dashboards provide real-time visibility of all the stages of the order fulfilment lifecycle, right from the order being placed to being delivered. Certain actions like returns, cancellations or change of address can be addressed in time.
The software optimizes the route, providing a granular view of the local reality landscape. Plotting an optimal route saves time and fuel by taking into consideration real-time delivery SLAs, delivery slots, traffic, and weather conditions.
Getting the customer to sign or digitally accept the receipt of the goods received is one of the key benefits of the software.
More and more retailers are switching to newer technologies to solve their delivery problems and keep up with the demand. From building logistics processes to business processes and AI-driven rules, FarEye's dispatch management platform offers a one-stop solution for real-time delivery for retailers.
The SaaS-based platform offers predictability, mobility, and visibility into every component of your logistics and supply-chain cycle. Anytime-anywhere track and trace keep both the managers and customers satisfied, while providing accountability. FarEye helps lower the cost of deliveries while providing customers with the ultimate happy experience of on-time delivery. To know more you can quickly sign up for a quick demo here.