Every business that deals with point-to-point delivery needs to consider workable optimization methods on the last mile of their parcel journey! This is important not only for reducing the transportation costs but also for cutting down the emissions of greenhouse gases as a direct byproduct of the company’s activity.

As you may have figured by now, the costs of last mile delivery tend to overtake all the other expenses in your supply chain. It’s been reported that nearly 55% of the delivery cost is accounted for the last mile, while 30% of total greenhouse emissions result from the burning of fossil fuels in this last transportation stage. The final leg of the parcel’s journey is also the most time-consuming stage in the supply chain, which decreases the efficiency and profitability of your business simultaneously.

One trend that we notice among online retailers offering a delivery component is reducing the shipping charges to keep their customers happy when the cost to deliver the service is in fact steadily increasing. Also, keeping up with the narrow delivery time windows can be a real nightmare that overcomplicates the last mile of delivery even further. All of these trends certainly raise many questions in logistics, which most providers approach via optimization, innovation, and more advanced coordination of their supply chain at every stage.

What are the benefits of last mile optimization for your business?

Optimizing the most time-consuming and costly part of the parcel journey will tangibly increase your revenue at the top line! What we also see as a result of optimization and more efficient delivery service is higher customer satisfaction, which ultimately means a lot of repeat business and reaching out to new customers. According to a report by Capgemini, nearly 75% of the customers say that they would choose to buy from a retailer that delivered their shopping on time and as promised.

In this next bit, we are suggesting several different methods, which can help you optimize your last-mile delivery, boost your business and lower your environmental impact as a whole.

Optimization Software

Optimizing the last mile of delivery won’t be possible without a reliable software solution to plan your routes based on real-time data. In bigger cities where traffic congestions and road closures are so commonplace, you need to be able to react on the spot with the most optimal routes that will cut down on your delivery times and vehicle mileage.

If you attempt to optimize your journeys by hand, you risk bumping into unexpected obstacles that could slow you down despite your good intentions. Route planning by hand is a lot less efficient and often leads to unpredictable outcomes that can cost you time, effort, and most importantly customer satisfaction! Software solutions on the other hand are more cost-effective and they can not only help you reduce the delivery journey but also optimize different features like fuel costs and drivers’ wages.

Crowdsourcing Drivers

This is certainly a great approach to optimizing delivery journeys and saving money from hiring, organizing, and training drivers into the best logistics practices. Many companies choose to rely on delivery platforms that assign drivers based on availability and location. You can imagine how arrangements like these can significantly reduce your total delivery costs by spending less on in-house staff and offering more affordable shipping quotes to customers.

Crowdsourcing is a proven business model that allows smaller companies to be more adaptable to the ever-increasing demands of their customers without having to compromise too much on the quality of the delivery service provided. Usually, allocating independent drivers to complete delivery journeys gives you more flexibility with your last-mile delivery problems, but it’s not as sustainable as a long-term solution if you are hoping to scale up further and optimize better.

Delivery Tracking

Another key approach to last mile optimization is GPS tracking of drivers and monitoring what’s happening in real-time. This is a feature that some route planners offer for greater visibility over the delivery operations and as an enhanced optimization if you need to do some cost-cuttings of your fuel expenditures and reduce the time windows of your journeys (by getting more directly involved in the delivery operations of your business).

A GPS tracker should give you an accurate view of your drivers on the map and allow you to react on the spot in case of an emergency such as a breakdown or a road accident. You will find delivery tracking to be an extremely valuable tool to have in the long run if solving your last mile delivery problems is your top priority as a growing business.

Final thoughts

In this blog, we listed only three of many approaches that you can use to optimize your last mile delivery. As technology progresses at such a rapid pace, we begin to see more and more solutions working to reduce the hurdles of last mile delivery so that companies can provide more speedy and efficient delivery services to suffice the ever-increasing customer demands in a competitive marketplace.

To find out about Zendfast’s software approach to streamlining your delivery operations, please contact us and we will get back to you shortly!