Whether you’re managing a small-scale local operation or a large-scale enterprise, continuously optimizing your seasonal delivery performance is absolutely essential. Businesses that don’t adjust to seasonal shifts leave money on the table: 49% of retailers say they lack flexibility during peak seasons, resulting in higher costs and reduced profits.
The biggest seasonal peaks for deliveries usually start around early August and last until mid-December, encompassing both back-to-school shopping and the major holidays. Even for businesses that don’t cater to these types of purchases, peak times put stress on the entire delivery ecosystem.
So how can your business increase delivery efficiency during these crunch times? The best solution is to start leveraging technology for optimal delivery performance. Digital delivery management tools can help eliminate inefficiencies, reduce costs, and ensure a seamless customer experience.
3 biggest tech obstacles to seasonal delivery efficiency
Your first task is to identify the root causes of the inefficiencies affecting your delivery performance, so you can take the right steps to resolve them. Several factors could be at play here:
1. Manual route planning
Manually planning routes requires juggling a lot of individual considerations, such as delivery driver schedules, truck capacities, drop-off points, pickup points, delivery time windows, and package priorities. The manual approach can create a massive bottleneck during peak seasons, to the point where even uncomplicated deliveries can take hours longer than necessary.
Manual processes also lead to more mistakes, further driving down your delivery efficiency when corrections are required.
2. Outdated or ineffective technology
In some cases, poorly integrated technology is often considered worse for your delivery performance than having none at all. 89% of retailers say that they struggle with their last-mile delivery operations, with the top reason being the complexity of their tech stack. When your competitors are simplifying their delivery pipelines with the latest technology, such as AI-powered Delivery Management Platforms (DMPs), you should be, too.
3. Lack of prioritization
Delivery efficiency is greatly impacted by how you prioritize. Delivering on the fly as orders come in, instead of according to a systematic procedure, leads to extreme inefficiencies and potential order and revenue losses. Having flexible priorities during peak season is especially important when your business will likely encounter capacity and volume issues.
5 ways to boost your seasonal delivery performance with technology
1. Route optimization and auto dispatch with AI
By employing advanced algorithms (usually featured in a unified DMP), businesses can optimize their delivery routes based on the factors of their choice, such as distance, traffic patterns, and delivery time windows. This results in reduced travel times and minimized fuel costs, while vastly reducing the labor costs and human errors associated with manual route planning.
SaaS solutions like Bringg, for example, provide robust route optimization by adapting dynamically to real-time changes, such as traffic congestion and last-minute orders. This kind of technology ensures that the shortest and most efficient routes are always chosen.
2. Time-on-site management and analysis
36% of retailers say that they struggle to deliver on time because they lack real-time order visibility and tracking. Without precise insights across every second of the fulfillment schedule, it’s impossible to accurately determine what’s causing delays in your shipments and implement fixes.
An efficient time-on-site management system helps solve this issue by analyzing variables such as how long it takes to park, unload, drop off the order, obtain proof of delivery, and return to the vehicle. AI-driven systems can predict the average time required for each delivery, then optimize your delivery schedules accordingly.
3. Leveraging third party delivery carriers
Seasonal peaks often put a strain on internal delivery fleets. To address this, businesses can use third-party carrier spillover solutions that integrate external carriers into their delivery ecosystem. This allows for greater flexibility and scalability during high-demand periods without adding headcount.
Solutions like Bringg’s Delivery Hub, for example, facilitate third-party carrier integration by giving businesses the option to tap into additional delivery resources when needed. This ensures that service levels are maintained even during peak seasons, preventing delays and enhancing overall delivery performance.
4. Business intelligence for data-driven decision making
Data is a powerful asset for increasing delivery performance. Business intelligence (BI) tools allow companies to gather, analyze, and visualize both internal and industry-wide data related to their key performance indicators. This includes total number of deliveries, average time per delivery, average cost per delivery, and how these numbers compare to competitors’.
By identifying larger trends, inefficiencies, and areas for improvement, companies can continuously refine their delivery strategies, leading to enhanced performance and cost savings.
5. Real-time rate shopping
Exceptional delivery performance is not just a matter of operational efficiency; it’s also about providing an exceptional customer experience. In the world of logistics and shipping, that means helping customers find the lowest possible shipping costs without having them jump through a lot of hoops.
With real-time rate shopping, customers can compare and select the best rates from multiple carriers in-platform, dramatically improving the checkout process. This increased transparency reduces cart abandonment by providing accurate delivery cost information, which contributes to repeat business, improved ROI, and a strong brand reputation.
Did you know? Bringg’s Delivery Management Platform is a single, unified platform that handles every aspect of your last-mile delivery. Bringg simplifies tasks with all of the latest solutions, like multi-carrier management, real-time rate shopping, route optimization, and dozens of automations to make life easier for drivers, dispatchers, and customers alike.
Boost your delivery performance in time for seasonal highs
Integrating the right technologies into your delivery operations can significantly elevate not just your seasonal delivery performance, but help you lower costs and manage your supply chain all year round.
AI-powered Delivery Management Platforms (DMPs), offer cutting-edge solutions for delivery optimization that lower costs and boost customer satisfaction. With the right DMP in place, businesses can not only expertly navigate peak seasons, reduce errors, and boost overall customer satisfaction, but they can also maintain efficient and cost-saving practices throughout the entire year.