Christmas can often be a worrying make or break time for many retailers – especially those who operate online and rely on an efficient delivery service to get their goods to their consumers.
In order to ensure the smooth running of operations during this time, a good relationship between retailers and delivery companies is vital. Measured planning and careful forethought is needed from all parties in order to provide the high level of service demanded by customers at this stressful time of year.
Today’s consumers are more savvy than previous generations thanks to the ease of comparing products and services online. A good, flexible delivery service could mean the difference between making a sale and losing out to a competitor. Free delivery, next-day delivery, tracking options, and even a 7 day service are all options that should at least be considered.
A good channel of communication between retailers and their logistics providers is imperative to a successful Christmas season campaign – Couriers and delivery companies should not be hesitant in reaching out to their clients for such information. With that in mind, here are some top tips for both retailers and logistics companies to bear in mind.
Last delivery dates
As frustrating as it may be, some customers need to be told that ordering items on the 23rd of December does not leave ‘plenty of time’ for your items to reach their destination in time for the big day. Merchants need to advise their customer base on the cut-off dates, and also encourage them to consider the implications of bad weather. Delivery companies can help retailers by pro-actively providing them with such information well in advance. There is no excuse not to have this information on site!
There is no such thing as being too careful when it comes to planning the Christmas season. With the increasingly unpredictable British weather making many roads impassable, it is a must to have plans in place how you will deal with a customer when a failure to deliver as promised looks likely.
Before silly season gets underway, retailers and logistics providers alike need to forecast, to the best of their abilities, the volumes that will likely be sent. Again, engagement between suppliers and their delivery partners is key to ensure enough capacity is reserved in order to fulfil all orders.
These three relatively simple steps are not beyond any retailer or delivery firm, and should ensure smooth sailing throughout the Christmas period.