16 November 2018
your business prepared for the winter retail season?
For several years now, the last
two months of the year have been synonymous with massive retail spending. Since
its importation from the US, the Black Friday / Cyber Monday weekend has well
and truly become part of the UK retail calendar, joining forces with Christmas
to create six weeks of intense consumer activity. And it’s online that’s come
out on top in recent years; in 2017, UK
online retail sales hit £1.39 billion on Black Friday, up 11.7% on
With such huge
commercial opportunity on offer, any retail company – especially those with an
online store – needs to make sure they’re ready to make the most of it. Your
delivery service should work like clockwork to ensure happy customers and
ultimately, maximum profits. Here’s how an Electronic Proof of Delivery (EPOD)
system can help you achieve it.
Meet those all-important delivery
Late deliveries aren’t
generally well-received by consumers at the best of times, but missing
Christmas delivery deadlines will leave many customers unimpressed, eager to
share their dissatisfaction and unlikely to shop with you again.
When you consider that
retailers can deal with as much as 40% or more of their entire annual order
volume in the last quarter of the year, an efficient job and route
planning process is a must. EPOD automation can take the work out of finding
the most logical and time-saving routes for your delivery fleet via simple
drag-and-drop functionality, ensuring orders reach their recipients when
they’re expected to.
Stay on track of a larger fleet
retail rush means more delivery drivers out on the road, and less space in
their vehicles. A need to get as many orders out as possible can easily lead to
hazardous and non-compliant overloading, but the built-in checks included with
intuitive EPOD software means no vehicle leaves your depot overburdened.
As your fleet moves
from job to job, it’s also important to be able to monitor their progress,
especially if you have more drivers on the books than normal. Your system
should be capable of GPS tracking your drivers and/or vehicles and displaying
their movements on a live map, keeping you informed of ETAs in real-time,
recording driver performance and alerting you if anything is threatening to
delay a delivery. And, with the ability to update your drivers in the field as
they work via smartphone apps and fit-for-purpose rugged devices, you can
ensure they stay agile in the face of unexpected hold ups.
Use custom data to make next year
Each winter retail
season offers a chance to improve on your business’s operational performance
and profit margin. Yet, it’s all but impossible to set and surpass targets
without understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the previous year, and
this comes down to data.
Every aspect of your
delivery service generates a data stream capable of revealing actionable
business insight, and EPOD reporting provides a meaningful picture of your provision
in action. Drilling down into KPI data and custom reports can reveal pressure
points and areas ripe for refinement, enabling you to adjust processes for
tangible gain the following year.
technology in place, the extra pressures of Black Friday and
Christmas needn’t slow your business down. Instead, the right system should
scale to meet additional demand, allowing you to keep providing the
best-possible delivery service for your customers, while maximising