Parcel Delivery: The challenges of last mile delivery and possible solutions

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It is interesting to know about the various components involved in delivering a parcel right from the time the courier company picks it up from retailers or distribution centers till it reaches the recipient. Companies engaged in Singapore parcel delivery deploy various methods of moving the parcel – from walking to riding on bicycles and motorcycle to using different kinds of vehicles and aircraft. On analyzing the components of the delivery process, it becomes clear that the last mile delivery is critical to ensure timely delivery. 28 percent of the shipping cost relates to the final mile delivery. In this article, we will discuss what last mile delivery or logistics mean, why it is so essential for e-commerce and the challenges and solutions to overcome it.

Last Mile Logistics

The final phase of delivery of consignments from the consignor to the end user is referred as last mile delivery although figuratively the last mile could mean several miles. Courier companies are mostly entrusted with the job because they have the necessary resources and infrastructure to make deliveries on time and safely. As E-commerce business is gathering momentum, it has become clear that regardless of the size of shipment, the last mile logistics is equally essential for all. Retailers are now overtly critical about this final phase of delivery that significantly impacts the end user experience.

The retailers’ benefits

Retailers are taking a particular interest in last mile delivery because it holds the key to reach consumers very fast and cost-effectively. Moreover, they can deliver more products too.  As consumers are inclined to get instant delivery or same day delivery, succeeding with the last mile challenge helps retailers to win over customers and turn them loyal. Considering that by 2018 e-commerce sales is likely to touch $2.4 trillion globally, the thrust on last mile delivery is growing significantly. Although large retailers like Amazon have benefited from their ability to fine-tune the critical phase of delivery, others too can take its advantage by learning the ropes of using courier companies that excel in such services.

The challenges of last mile delivery

  • Organizing last mile delivery in an urban setting is often quite challenging due to the congested city traffic and traffic regulations that slow down movement. For international shipments, the fuel costs on the last leg of delivery can jack up delivery costs dramatically.
  • Last mile delivery for large products can be quite complicated. These products might require skilled unpacking during delivery and then assemble it so that customers can verify that they have got the same product that they had ordered. This specialized service can become a challenge when selecting courier services.
  • With increasing sales volumes, resource constraints become a challenge in last mile delivery. There is already a shortage of drivers and some other resources.

To overcome the challenges retailers are looking at options for using technology.  Some companies are using drones and robots, and other technologies of route optimization can improve performance. Storefront pickup locations are also effective.

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