Your business idea might sound revolutionary. It might change the lives of your customers and help you earn profits. But, the success of your business comes down to one factor. It’s your order delivery experience. For this reason, smart logistics is what you should be looking out for,
Order delivery can have a huge impact on your business. On one hand, it helps you establish a rapport with the customer. While on the other, it increases the customer satisfaction level of your brand.
If you’re already doing business, you must have understood the importance of customer satisfaction. It’s something most companies invest a lot of money. In spite of this, they are not able to get the desired returns.
However, a good business strategy does more for you at low costs. One such business area to build a smart strategy for customer satisfaction can be logistics. Logistics can help you take your business to the next level.
Businesses neglecting logistics, end up with lower profits, and disrupted customer satisfaction. Moreover, their ability to compete in the market decreases.
But, there’s nothing to worry about. With the right strategy, logistics can be the cherry on your business cake. If you’re looking for ways to improve your logistics, you’re at the right place.
Read on more to discover the best tips to improve customer satisfaction using logistics. At the same time, reduce your business costs!
How to Reduce Your Shipping Costs with Smart Logistics?
Shipping costs are often a significant part of the operational expenses, especially for small businesses. A lot of companies today are looking for innovative ways to ship products and reduce their shipping costs.
Especially in today’s competitive market, even a small percentage of cost savings in shipping and logistics can go a long way to improve the overall competitiveness and profitability of the company.
There are several ways in which you can save on your shipping costs:
Purchase a Label Printer for Your Logistics Team
One of the simplest ways to find quick savings is to invest in a good label printer. This can save costs on buying packaging slips for each consignment while reducing fulfilment times.
Increasing Standardized Packaging Options
Picking up boxes with random packaging dimensions was prevalent in the past, but today choosing a wrong box for your product shipment can cost you a lot more. Big boxes are more expensive. You also don’t need them most of the time.
Optimizing packaging dimensions and using standard packaging options can lead to a lot of cost savings for your company.
Negotiation with Many Carriers
The shipping companies today, price their services based on the order volumes. As the shipment volume increases, the shipping logistics costs become less.
For smaller businesses, this is even more important. This is because they can save more by negotiating with multiple shipping carriers.
Location-Based Shipping Strategies
Using a regional carrier can often be the best option as they have much lower rates than the larger national carriers. Moreover, they will have a robust network in the shipment’s destination geographical area.
This would mean faster shipping logistics services at a much lower cost.
Buying Insurance from 3rd Party
The shipping carriers often charge more for the shipping insurance than third party insurance companies. The cost savings in insurance can be sizeable. This is especially for small and medium-sized businesses.
Outsourcing Shipping to 3rd Party Logistics Providers
Another important step in long term cost savings in shipping is to outsource your shipping. Outsourcing to a reliable 3PL partner or logistics aggregator can help you run things smoother.
The benefits and cost savings are multifold. This is because many of these 3rd party logistics providers bring in technical advantages. These prove to be smart logistics solutions for your business.
With outsourcing, companies need not invest in any additional maintenance or warehouse rental costs. This practice adds value to businesses. At the same time, it also helps in staying competitive in the market.
Consolidation of Packages
The consolidation of shipping packages can go a long way in achieving cost benefits for the company. Consider the packaging costs, e.g. Package A is $10, and the packaging costs for Package B is $15.
If we can consolidate both package’s SKUs in one box, the cost of the combined package is $18. Thus, by combining certain SKUs into one consolidated package, we can achieve lower shipping costs while optimizing the shipping consignment.
Apart from the strategies mentioned above, partnering with a good logistics aggregator can go a long way in achieving your shipping objectives. At the same time, it can also help in long term savings for the company.
Let us see some of the benefits of partnering with an excellent technology-based logistics aggregator:
One-stop Solution for Smart Logistics
Partnering with a good technology-based logistics aggregator could mean, bringing together many shipping partners along with specialized delivery management services.
Logistics providers offer all these services on a single technology-based platform. In other words, they serve as a one-stop solution for businesses.
Reduced Logistics Costs
Most small businesses that have partnered with robust logistics aggregators, have seen consistent logistics cost savings over time. Most of the reputed smart logistics aggregators are able to provide minimum shipping costs as compared to traditional shipping carriers.
Since they leverage their best in class capabilities and investments in delivery capabilities, they can easily ship anywhere PAN India.
Low Investments Needed in Technology
Top logistics aggregator platforms have a robust system and platform capabilities. This would mean your company no longer has to invest in procuring and implementing expensive software to manage your logistics.
Partnering with a smart logistics aggregator can help achieve significant savings in procuring, implementing, and maintaining complex software platforms. These platforms are needed to run relevant logistics operations.
Robust Technology Platform
Today, many technology-enabled logistics aggregators specialize in providing cutting- edge logistics solutions at minimum costs. Some of the capabilities these players bring in as a value addition are:
- Real-Time Order Tracking: You can use the logistics applications to easily track shipments, generate order reports, and manage all shipping orders.
- Business Analytics: Tech-based logistics aggregators provide in-depth analytics capabilities for businesses to have a complete view of their performance.
- Recommendations: The recommendation engine, as part of these platforms, gives continuous recommendations on the best shipping partner that suits your business needs.
Access to Newer Markets
Businesses can expand their delivery capabilities and deliver to markets they couldn’t deliver earlier using these logistics providers.
Some geographical areas have no logistics or infrastructure capabilities. With smart logistics, you can ship your products effectively to these areas.
Apart from the benefits mentioned above, some of the additional benefits of partnering with technology-based logistics aggregators are:
- Minimum shipping rates
- Real-time notifications (on email, SMS or web browser),
- Domestic as well as international shipping solutions,
- Advanced shipping tracking
- Mobile app and seller dashboards
- Bulk order upload facilities
- Marketplace integration
- Robust order management tools
How to Reduce Your Transportation Overheads with Smart Logistics Practices?
With increasing competition, the breathing space for inefficiency has been on a steep downward slope in recent times. Talking about shipping costs, they form a significant chunk of your business expense and is an unavoidable part of your day-to-day routine. Not only that, but it also has the potential to make or break your relationship with your customers.
It has forced marketers to switch to smart logistics by cutting out unnecessary expenses and focusing more on their area of expertise.
Here are several factors that can help you reduce transportation overheads significantly-
Focus on Efficient Packaging
When importing/exporting goods, packaging consumes a lot of space. It also takes away a significant portion of your budget. So, if you want to excel at smart logistics, you must learn how to bring your packaging down to the bare minimum. It is one of the easiest ways to reduce your costs.
Guessing that you are not a one-timer, we would suggest the following measures to master the art of shipping logistics and smart logistics–
- Find the smallest box that fits the product.
- Make sure to use packaging materials as much as required.
- You can also consider Tyvek bags or other sturdy options to pack outgoing products.
- Buy the packing material in bulk in order to get maximum discounts.
- Recycle the incoming shipping materials wherever possible.
Use a Shipping Calculator
A recent study by the Baymard Institute found out that nearly 28% of shoppers abandon their cart due to unexpected shipping logistics costs. Transportation charges involve a lot of factors. However, a layman might not understand the intricacies.
If you are trying to reduce transportation overhead, you must know the details before moving forward with the shipping process.
You can always consult an expert. In case you want to do it all by yourself, we suggest a shipping calculator. With time, more and more brands are understanding the importance of incorporating it and the need for transparency to woo the customers.
Such additions can be especially useful when the delivery costs vary a lot from one location to another.
Utilizing the Off-Peak Days
Shipping costs vary a lot, and the day and time that you choose for your shipment can have a significant impact on your final expense. What if we tell you that shipping it a day before or ahead, or even by a few hours can have a major impact?
According to the place you carry out your business from, you will find low-volume days or working hours when there is less rush. If you want to attain smart logistics, you must know how to use the information to your advantage.
It may not be possible every time for perishable goods, but for non-perishable ones, you can save up to 10% on the entire shipping if you choose the right time and day.
Consolidation of Shipments is a Must
There are times when carriers charge flat rates for their services. If you want to achieve smart logistics, you can combine multiple shipments or partner with a known retailer in your area to send your orders together.
You can also encourage your customers to order a higher quantity every time instead of recurring small orders. You can also give them a small discount to woo them in accepting your proposal.
Prefer FCL or FTL (full container/truckload) shipments instead of LCL/LTL (less container/truckload) shipments. You can also subscribe to a third-party logistics program to save yourself up to 20% of freight costs.
Find a Load Board
The idea of finding a load board may be especially useful for a non-frequent sender, but even if you are a frequent one, it can be of great help. In such a process, instead of doing it the traditional way, you look for a carrier with an empty capacity.
Such carriers can carry your products as a backhaul, and it is a win-win situation for both the parties. They only charge for the cost of fuel and their commission, and you can save up to 35% of the cost.
With smart logistics, people can easily keep track of all those local carriers who ferry regularly, and you can connect with them to save some of your cost every single time.
Find the Right Warehousing Services
If you generally transport a lot of products to the same destination, it would be beneficial if you use a warehousing service which is closer to the customers. That way, you can cut down a chunk of your shipping cost.
Before utilizing the services of a third-party, keep these considerations in mind. The first and foremost would be the safety of the consignment. You must collaborate with a reputed warehouse known for its reliability and safety. You can also appoint a safety manager to evaluate and organize the safe transmission of products.
Utilize Automatic Container Loading and Unloading
It is needless to point out that manual labour is getting costly every passing day. So, if you want to cut down your costs, you can do so by hiring an automatic loading and unloading service. They will not only save you time but will also prevent any product damage.
Cost of indirect labour can be a headache and can jack up the ultimate price unnecessarily. You must concentrate on minimizing them for every shipment and do so without disturbing the overall balance. You can also employ labour management software available in the market to help you attain optimum cost.
Outsource the Less-Efficient Processes
If you are an exporter/importer, you already have a lot to ponder on, and there are high chances that you may not excel in the entire shipping process. Thankfully, you can find third-parties for every component of shipping, be it storage, loading, unloading, or others.
Outsourcing the less-efficient processes has a flurry of benefits. The first and most important one is the cost reduction. But, you can increase your efficiency when you leverage a third party for your processes.
To make matters easy, you must inform them about the requirements and your primary goal of hiring them. You can discuss the costs, frequency of shipments, size, and specifics, etc. Your logistics aggregator must take care of these to align perfectly with your organization.
How to Improve Your Delivery Experience with Smart Logistics Practices?
Smart logistics is indeed a positive dynamic change in the logistics Industry. This is where 3Pls and 4Pls kick in!
You might be wondering, what are these 3PL and 4PL services. Read on to find out about their fruitful experience.
4pl in logistics means a complete tech-powered solutions package for your logistics needs. It’s better than 3pl, which is without the Tech X Factor and focuses on fulfilling your transportation needs in one way or the other.
That’s a detrimental feature in contrast to the 4pl which focuses on both efficiencies as well as effective fulfillment of your product delivery needs.
4pl helps in business planning by leveraging its analytical tools of business performance reporting. Proper business planning helps you to make the necessary corrections in your business strategy. This ultimately takes care of the controlling function part of managing your business.
Top Players Servicing
4PLs tie-up with FedEx, ECOM, Ekart, Shadowfax, Delhivery, and XPRESSBEES etc. These transport carriers have built their “Esteemed” status via adhering to the must-have norm of best client satisfaction.
4PLs also help increase customer satisfaction at several levels. You get to leverage the best of industry experts under one platform.
Choose As Per Your Requirements
With Shipping101, you can choose your Shipping Partner as per your business needs.
4PL Servicing is Specialized
A 4pl tech-enabled logistics aggregator takes care of all the functions of transportation. This is in contrast to a 3PL player which has control over only some of the transportation functions.
A 3PL layer simply works as a link to the transport servicing providers. The management of the transportation functions is not in the hands of a 3PL player.
While on the other hand, 4PL players have specialization in the field of product delivery. End to End Management of the Transportation Supply Chain Function involves proper product handling and movement, Timely delivery, and Order Tracking for the buyers and the sellers, etc. A 4PL ensures al this.
Also, it’s generally assumed that 4pl players take a premium for their services rendered. This is not the case with every 4PL.
Product Shipping Limit in Your Hands
Many 4PLs don’t put a limit on the orders to be delivered by weight or amount criteria. One can ship as much order as they desire or want. Shipping101’s only motive is to service each and every seller in the best way possible.
Smart logistics has indeed set up a groundbreaking path in the shipping logistics Industry. One can manage their logistics functions by logging into their account with the tech logistics servicing player. But, it’s to be remembered that smart logistic needs can best be serviced with a 4PL logistics aggregator.
A 3pl player simply takes care of filling their required pockets while a 4pl logistics player takes care of filling a seller’s pocket instead of their own.
What is SAP Logistics and How it Can help You Improve Your Order Turnaround Times?
Ecommerce and online shopping/selling sites have created employment for many. With the help of disruptive technologies like SAP and the internet, selling goods online is now an easy job.
We can optimize the route traveled, manage transportation, manage warehouse, and optimize the inventory and supply chain with the help of SAP logistics.
Systems, Application and Processing (SAP) in data processing are helping businesses around the world achieve their goals and mission through well-formulated and highly efficient ERP software.
This software helps in managing the business, both online and offline. Apart from the business benefits, by optimizing these business processes, the turnaround time is reduced. As a result, the cost of shipping also comes down.
You can ship goods with reduced costs and increased customer satisfaction. This is because the process of selling through eCommerce sites with SAP solutions becomes very attractive.
Research suggests that 80% of customers trust online recommendations. On the other hand, and 52% of customers who bought a product are likely to give an online review or recommendations. Businesses always look for increased efficiency and reduced costs, but it is also important to have good customer satisfaction.
SAP-based shipping gives the perfect balance between speedy delivery and reduced cost. This is the reason behind the increased customer satisfaction strategy. Apart from the cost optimization processes, SAPs also tracks warranty and repair services of the sold product.
Running an online business includes good customer satisfaction even after the purchase, and this is taken care of by the SAP logistics and management.
SAP logistics software is simple and can be easily managed. The main reason for big players like Amazon and eBay to achieve optimised shipping costs and delivery is because they let the customer choose the time of delivery and the cost.
By partnering with a good shipping logistics company, the fine balance of maintaining an optimised cost and the reduced time for delivery can be achieved.
Another application of SAP software that impacts the supply chain and offers an optimized solution is in quality management. As quality management is an integral part of the supply chain and logistics functions, the SAP system usually comes as a complete package with materials management, planning management, and production management.
The functions of quality management are important for managing the warehouse, inspection of the incoming materials and checking the quality of the finished goods. For these processes to be completed without any disturbances, we need to focus on three main responsibilities in quality management:
SAP Supply Chain Planning
The planning function allows planning the inspections of the goods that are received from the suppliers as well as the production department. It is also useful in knowing the work in process and the stock that are with us right away.
Through the planning functions, we can also determine the characteristics that should be tested and the equipment that should be used to test those particular characteristics. Furthermore, it gives details of the process of information.
Supply Chain Notifications
The supply chain notification can be treated as a request for the department to take action based on the severity of the issue. The notification can be of two types:
- The request raised by a customer against one of the products that you sold.
- The request you raised to one of your suppliers regarding the materials you are supplied with.
Both these notifications are important for a smooth operation of the supply chain. Options will be available for creating notifications for an existing order or to create a new notification.
The quality inspection happens based on the planning that is defined by the SAP supply chain planning. The process of inspection is based on lots. A lot is a batch of products that needs to be inspected. Lots can be created manually or automatically through the SAP.
Most of the processes are related to warehouse maintaining, and automatic lots are preferred most of the time. Inspection is the process of checking whether the parameters or characteristics of the product are under the tolerance limit.
Once the process of inspection is over, the SAP reporting through the SAP creates various reports for the team for further analysis. Through the process of inspection or checking the products, the process of notifying the supplier about the regular fails is made effortlessly.
The warehouse management is a part of SAP supply chain management that monitors the movements of goods to and from a warehouse. Through the process of warehouse mapping, we can optimize the storage of products in the warehouse and create more space for more materials to be stored.
SAP logistics usually provides warehouse monitors through which the activities that are happening in the warehouse-like assigning task, monitoring the storage, movement of material, and warehouse orders are monitored.
The movement of storage bins in the activity area can be monitored, and thus, we can concatenate for stock placements.
The process of delivering the goods from the warehouse is of two parts:
- Inbound deliveries – It comprises the notification, the put-away and the goods of the post orders. It also includes the notices from the suppliers regarding the advance shipping, slotting, deconsolidation and the returns. The inbound documents are the reports that are maintained from the start of the transfer until the put-away.
- Outbound deliveries – It usually refers to the outbound deliveries. It includes activities like packing, loading, and updating the current location of the goods. The outbound documents are generally created automatically at the moment of shipping logistics request is generated. The outbound delivery tracking has also increased customer satisfaction parameters in recent times, as per a study.
Shipping might seem like a tough nut to crack. But, with the right strategies you can ace it. Start with good product packaging. This will help your product reach safely at your customer’s doorstep.
The next thing to do is keep in mind is to choose a logistics provider that helps in seamless shipping. This helps in delivering the product right on time. Make sure you keep your commitments made to the customer.
After all, the happier the customer, the more successful your business.
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