Heading Into 2020: What’s Ahead in the Small Parcel Shipping Industry?
Let’s take a look at the parcel industry as we head into 2020. We can certainly say that the changes in the industry are happening so fast that you’d better not blink or you’ll miss something. New technologies, higher customer demands and on-demand delivery expectations, coupled with Amazon’s push to build its own delivery network will make for a fast-paced 2020 for both customers and logistics companies alike.
The consumer wants fast and flexible delivery options. This facet is so important that research shows that the delivery experience actually drives how consumers feel about the brand itself. High shipping costs, long delivery times, and few delivery choices will drive consumers away from a product. When sellers warehouse products close to the final destination, consumers appreciate the convenience, and costs are contained.
We talk a lot about delivery options, but in-store pick up is actually growing in popularity too. Retailers are looking for ways to fulfill on-line ordering faster by offering customers a user- friendly process for in-store pickups. In-store fulfillment has several advantages for retailers: it saves on inventory management and shipping costs when they use centrally located fulfillment centers.
Another delivery option that will continue to rise in 2020 is the direct-to-consumer fulfillment model. This allows merchants to ship directly to the consumer, such as in Amazon’s Seller Fulfillment Prime.
Since cost and n time service are continuing considerations, retailers should consider the choice of a regional carrier like LSO/Lone Star Overnight. Often a well-kept secret, with up to a 40% price advantage, the same or faster transit times and better on-time service, LSO and their sister regional carriers make a perfect logistics partner for retailers and e-commerce businesses.
The world of e-commerce is always evolving. There’s no question that creating a branded experience for your customers helps foster long term loyalty. In the future, sellers will find new ways to brand their products through the delivery experience, such as printing shipper logos on the carrier’s shipping label.
One last option that will continue to gain traction this year is the continuing opportunity for consumers to have choices. A recent novel invention is where customers can choose money back rewards if they are willing to wait a little longer to get their package. This saves the shipper money and gives an incentive to the recipient. Be on the lookout for creative solutions like this one in 2020.