Revitalizing Your Shipping Operations Starts Today
There are plenty of challenges ahead. But by looking at your total distribution costs, you will likely find opportunities to streamline your operations and position the business for success through smarter shipping. We have some ideas to get you started:
Decentralize your shipping network.
Getting items across the country in one or two days is a tall order, but it's expected now that people – including your customers – have grown accustomed to fast e-commerce delivery speeds. Even if your business doesn't rely on e-commerce, your customers expect the same fast delivery to commercial or residential destinations. Faster transportation services means back-breaking costs – on top of increased surcharges due to the scarcity of truck space these days.
To shorten delivery times, we're seeing shippers operate from multiple warehouses. Some open new warehouses, while others rent space. Either way, the idea is to significantly cut miles between what you're shipping and who you're shipping it to. This reduces shipping costs and the need for air shipping while making one- or two-day delivery more achievable.
Adding another warehouse is a big step, but you don't have to evaluate this strategy alone. We can go over transportation costs and warehouse network options with you to identify the opportunities and risks before making a decision.
Learn more about your costs.
While you can't eliminate all surcharges, some are solvable problems. Excessive dwell time, for example, results in a costly fee for keeping drivers onsite too long. By preparing for a truck's arrival, you can keep hundreds of dollars in your pocket. You also protect relationships with carriers – which is particularly important when they're in high demand.
Another thing we see is shippers expediting too often. Many don't fully understand transit times or shipping zones. When this happens, they overspend on expediting when standard ground could meet their needs just as well.
The key is to know where to look for simple changes that have a big impact – and we can help with that!
Put customers first on every shipment.
Delivery interruptions happen. But it's up to every shipper to update customers when circumstances change to maintain high levels of customer satisfaction. Here are some tips to give you a head start:
- Get detailed, accurate information. Make a point to get all the necessary details early to keep you, carriers and customers on the same page. For example, shippers often forget to ask customers if it's a residential or commercial delivery, if a lift gate is needed or if there are defined receiving hours. Also, always capture contact information from someone at the delivery site.
- Get us involved! We're watching the weather, truck unions, carriers and more to be your eye in the sky. But we can't catch everything all the time. If something changes with a shipment, reach out and we'll keep tabs with the carrier so you can focus on the customer.
- Be proactive. When you reach out to a customer with an update is just as important as what you tell them. And if you use your website to post notifications, you can set customer expectations up front.
If your customers complain about your communications, we can work together today to build a proactive plan. Let us know!
Residential delivery is more than a trend.
Now that businesses are used to a work-from-home model, don't expect things to go completely back to normal. That ship has sailed. This changes things for your shipping operations – whether you're an e-commerce shop or not. For example, more home deliveries bring residential delivery fees, different documentation requirements and different criteria for carrier services.
Unsure what this shift to residential means for your small packages? We can break it down for you so there are no surprises.
Let's get to work.
We wouldn't offer all these ideas if we weren't ready to back them up. We're ready to help – just fill out the form and a member of our team will get in touch with you. Or, you can reach out to your favorite Worldwide Express team member to get started.