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How to Beat the Challenges of Last Mile Delivery

Online retail and eCommerce sales have skyrocketed, a boom that has prompted many businesses to take a closer look at and revitalize their supply chains, particularly their last-mile delivery practices.

Unless you’re well-versed in the world of supply chain logistics, the term ‘last-mile delivery’ is likely unfamiliar. 

Before we delve into the specifics of what this process entails, it’s important to preface it with three primary facts. 

From a business standpoint, the last-mile delivery is typically the most complicated, time-consuming and costly part of the entire sales transaction.

That said, it’s also the most critical.

While it may seem like marketing, manufacturing, and distribution are the biggest obstacles, last-mile logistics can pose its own set of challenges in terms of conducting deliveries in a timely and efficient manner.

With this in mind, what is last-mile delivery exactly, what are the potential issues it presents, and how can Cantec Couriers help? To learn all this and the secrets behind the Cantec difference, keep on reading!

What is Last-Mile Delivery?

what is last-mile delivery

Last-mile delivery is the final step of the delivery process when a package or delivery is transported from a manufacturing or transportation/courier hub to its final destination – aka the customer who made the initial purchase, be it at their personal home or an alternative destination such as a post office or retail location.

The last-mile delivery portion of a business transaction is by far the most important, as we’ve mentioned above. 

As such, businesses want to invest a fair amount of resources to ensure that their deliveries get to consumers as quickly and efficiently as possible.

This sentiment is particularly crucial when it comes to the expectations surrounding alternative shipping methods such as expedited or same-day delivery options being at an all-time high, especially in the context of eCommerce shipping

These days, customers want to order in real-time and receive their purchases as soon as possible.

In this way, the execution of last-mile delivery is crucial for promoting customer satisfaction and ensuring that consumers continue to buy from your business. 

That said, it’s not necessarily that simple when it comes to actual execution.

The Last Mile Problem – Challenges of Last-Mile Deliveries

As we’ve said, the primary objective of last-mile delivery is to ship items as quickly and efficiently as possible. It seems straightforward enough, right?

In theory, yes.

In practice, not so much.

Last-mile logistics are amongst the most complicated when it comes to execution. As such, challenges may arise that could hinder this efficiency due to two primary culprits:

Delivery Inefficiencies

If you’ve ever ordered anything online, you’ve likely experienced the gruelling scenario of watching the tracking page in real-time to see if there are any updates regarding when your package is meant to arrive. 

You know what they say, a watched pot never boils, but sometimes we just can’t help ourselves!

What’s even more frustrating is when the tracking page doesn’t seem to budge, and the delivery itself feels like it’s taking forever to get to you. What’s the primary cause of this delivery delay? The last mile problem of inefficiency.

These delays are due to the last step of the shipping journey comprising multiple stops with low drop sizes. 

In other words, depending on the desired delivery location, it may take longer to get to where it’s going.

For instance, in more isolated rural areas, delivery destinations along a specific route will likely be spaced quite widely apart, with only a couple of packages dropped at each location. 

If you thought that living in a city would improve these conditions, you’d be out of luck. Even more densely populated areas have their own obstacles, one of the most prominent being consistent delays in delivery times due to traffic.

Last-Mile Delivery Costs

As we said, on top of being the most complicated to execute and the most time-consuming aspect of shipment logistics, last-mile delivery costs are also among the most expensive for a business.

These expenses are further facilitated by ever-increasing eCommerce sales, which exponentially drive the number of parcels delivered daily. In Canada alone, 2020 eCommerce sales were expected to reach $52.04 billion, increasing 20% from 2019.

Paired with customer expectations surrounding fast and often free delivery options, last-mile delivery costs come with a high price tag.

According to a Business Insider article published in January of this year,  as a portion of the total shipping cost, the expenses surrounding last-mile deliveries are significant – making up 53% overall. 

Coupled with the growing pervasiveness of free shipping, customers are less willing to pick up the tab when paying delivery fees.

Due to this reluctance, your last-mile delivery expenses will likely either fall on your business or logistics partners.  

With this consideration in mind, the costs, specifically, are where many businesses are looking to instill technological solutions to increase efficiency and save money.

How Technology Can Help

Throughout this article, we’ve repeated that customers’ demands surrounding fast and efficient delivery are at an all-time high. 

However, this trend is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. As such, businesses must take a long, hard look at how they should adapt to meet, and ideally exceed, these expectations.

Finding technology that can help facilitate and make these processes easier is vital for ensuring on-time deliveries no matter where they’re going or when they’re ordered. 

In particular, outsourcing and establishing partnerships are among the most advantageous methods for promoting long-term success in these areas.

That said, you have to pick the right partners who understand and appreciate your brand’s values and ultimate objectives.

Cantec Couriers allows you to scale your business, expedite your deliveries and maintain high customer satisfaction levels, whenever and wherever, with the fastest delivery times at the most affordable prices.

Through implementing exclusive opportunities, such as same-day delivery, Cantec Couriers works with you and your business to create and facilitate a competitive advantage, reach more customers and unlock new revenue streams.

Cantec Couriers offers itemized billing, an easy-to-use and navigate dashboard and simple integration across multiple CMS and eCommerce platforms.

Collaborating with Cantec Couriers allows you to not only stay on top of your business but promote increased efficiency, accessibility and take it to entirely new heights!

Here’s how it works:

Step 1 – Enter pick-up and drop-off details.

  • Select a location for drivers to pick up and drop off your package.

Step 2 – Confirm package details.

  • Select the category that best fits your item.
  • Prepare your parcel with packaging.
  • Enter the package dimensions, weight and additional notes for the driver.

Step 3 – Review and confirm your order.

  • Ensure all the inputted information is correct.
  • Schedule a time for Cantec Couriers to pick up your item(s)
  • Add any additional information about pick-up and drop-off locations you might have.
  • Authorize Cantec Couriers to come and pick up the order.

Step 4 – Relax and track

  • Wait for a courier to come and pick up your order.
  • Sit back and track your delivery kilometre by kilometre through live tracking.

Cantec Couriers Can Help You Navigate the World of Last-Mile Delivery

With the ever-growing expectations from consumers, particularly in the world of eCommerce, which is experiencing exponential growth with no indications of a decrease on the horizon, expedited delivery options are a make or break for many consumers.

Determining how best to execute and organize last-mile delivery can be a stressful and daunting endeavour. There’s no need to feel overwhelmed! With Cantec Couriers, you can rest assured that we will do everything within our power to ensure that your deliveries are carried out safely, quickly and efficiently.

With our easy-to-use technology, reliable response times and dedication to getting the job done right, you can rest assured that we will be there for you every step of the way – and that’s the Cantec Couriers’ difference!

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