Over the last 12 months, a lot has changed how organizations manage their supply chain distributions. There has been a rapid change in consumer behavior due to COVID-19, with an increased number of online shoppers. As a result of this rapid shift in purchasing trends, businesses across various industries feel the need to focus more on last-mile delivery.
The e-commerce market is booming like never before. As of 2021, e-commerce sales are expected to account for 18.1 percent of the total global retail sales. By 2023, it is predicted to increase to 22 percent. With the booming e-commerce market, it is expected that there will be growth in the final-mile sector.
Check out these up-and-coming final-mile trends to expect in 2021.
#1 High Demand, Increased Expectation
Over the next few years, last-mile delivery is expected to become more demanding. And even when the pandemic dies out, this trend is here to stay.
Since COVID-19 protocols made it extremely difficult for consumers to buy groceries and shop in person, delivery services have become the rage.
Companies like UberEats, Instacart, Delivery.com, and Grubhub make it convenient for consumers to get restaurant foods or groceries while in the comforts of their own homes. And customers expect to have items delivered fast.
Along with the higher demand and expectations, consumers are all the more vocal with their reviews and feedback regarding a delivery service. In this social media age, one bad delivery can put a severe dent in your brand’s reputation.
With this increased demand and expectation over the final mile, partnering with a reputable delivery or courier service is crucial.
#2 Same-day Delivery
Everything is fast and easy these days, and customers expect to get their products as soon as possible.
According to a report, millennial consumers are willing to pay a 30 percent premium to make same-day delivery. The majority are even willing to pay extra for guaranteed delivery.
By 2025, same-day delivery is expected to reach a 25 percent market share.
Nonetheless, it is not only same-day delivery services that will continually rise. Overall, consumers want the final mile to adjust to their lifestyle. This means offering various delivery options such as click and collect parcel lockers and specific days of delivery.
#3 Increased Transparency & Visibility
Another crucial trend in last-mile logistics is the technology that allows the real-time visible and transparent mode of delivery.
Businesses now have the ability to fully monitor the parcel journey, giving them the ability to quickly find alternative routes when there is disruption or traffic. It follows that customers can easily and automatically be updated on the arrival date of their orders.
Since customers are given this level of transparency — regular updates and insights on any delay — it lessens the number of customer calls to your customer service asking assistance to track a package.
Apart from the above-mentioned advantages, with a tracking platform, your business can use detailed data for analysis to improve future deliveries.
#4 Environmental Awareness
Environmental awareness has touched almost every industry, and both consumers and businesses have become more aware of how their decisions impact the environment.
Apart from providing top-notch delivery service, companies also have to think about mitigating their carbon footprints.
To balance both needs, a viable solution e-commerce businesses can resort to is partnering with a multi-carrier company. With a multi-carrier partner, businesses can still fulfill their coverage on time while avoiding adding another vehicle on the road.
#5 Contactless Delivery
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a surge in contactless delivery. Due to safety and health reasons, over 40 percent of American consumers prefer contactless delivery.
Because of this, delivery executives are continually looking for solutions to promote safety and improve customer experience.
As of date, digital solutions such as Electronic Proof of Delivery software (e-POD) and digital payments are embraced by courier services to minimize contact.
#6 Drones & Delivery Bots
Tech solutions for last-mile delivery do not stop with digital payments and e-PODs. A lot of retailers are actually exploring robotic delivery options. These include drones, self-driving vehicles, and autonomous delivery bots.
In fact, Amazon invested over $500 million in Aurora, an autonomous technology developer.
While some companies are experimenting with delivery bot solutions, others are pursuing autonomous robot delivery solutions. However, it would still be a long haul before these technologies would be put to use.
#7 More Urban Warehouses
Even with vaccination rollouts and relaxation of social distancing regulations, many consumers are still hesitant to visit physical stores. Thus, more and more retailers are using their brick-and-mortar establishments as micro-fulfillment centers.
Adding to the increased demand for same-day deliveries, it has become necessary for e-commerce businesses to consider urban warehouse solutions to accommodate this consumer trend.
Though the pandemic has a drastic effect on our economic landscape, it opened the window to accelerate developments across industries. This includes the final-mile logistics.
Meta title: Learning About the Last-mile Logistics Trend in 2021
meta desc: Over the last 12 months, a lot has changed how organizations manage their supply chain distributions. Learn about the last-mile logistics trend this year.