The pandemic in 2020 had an immense impact on each life. But, did you notice how things have changed in the past 18 months? The rapid lockdowns have been lifted; offices, restaurants, shopping malls, and movie theatres have largely reopened; and schools have opened partially in some states. While the everyday situation is changing rapidly in this post-Covid era, eCommerce/D2C businesses have started seeing new behavioral shifts in customers’ shopping habits. Plus, the said changes over the past year show the signs of staying in the future. The changes in the eCommerce industry have further led to more logistics service providers entering the market.
What Led To The Changes In The Ecommerce Industry?
As national and state governments imposed lockdowns throughout the country to avoid the transmission of the deadly virus, a massive shift in consumer shopping behavior was bound to happen. People chose online marketplaces over physical markets to shop for essential and non-essential things from the comfort of their homes. Subsequently, millions of consumers rooting for online marketplaces led to the unforeseen growth of the digital economy.
How Ecommerce Shipping Works Now
In the post-covid era, logistics providers need to carry out the shipping process with utmost care to abide by the Covid norms. Here are some practices followed by logistics companies to function effectively in the post-Covid era.
Handling The Surge In Business
The eCommerce industry has seen steady growth in the past several years but after the Covid-19 pandemic, the growth has been unprecedented due to the shifting consumer behavior. Consumers chose online markets over brick-and-mortar stores to purchase almost everything. This altered behavior could be permanent, and to manage it successfully, eCommerce businesses are dependent on logistics service providers.
With lakhs of shipments to deliver, offering flawless order fulfillment services may be challenging for a logistics partner. To overcome this situation, logistics partners take care of several measures like automation and other advanced technologies for inventory management, multimodal transportation, capacity building in man force, adoption of different delivery methods, and ultimately taking care of customer satisfaction.
Safety And Hygiene
Logistics order fulfillment starts from receiving an online order, arranging items, and packaging, preparing its invoice, dispatching, and delivering the shipment to the customer’s doorsteps.
Even as vaccines have been introduced and medical services have transformed, taking safety precautions and increasing hygiene in operations are the only key factors that can minimize the virus transmission threats. It includes ensuring inventory hygiene, decreasing human contact during transportation, forgoing routine signatures for package delivery, regularly sanitizing delivery equipment, training the employees and third parties to comply with safety requirements.
Managing Covid-19 Regulations
Authorities and local governments have placed many rules and regulations to prevent the spread of the virus. Logistics service providers need to be prepared to comply with these regulations to deliver products to the customers’ doorsteps safely. It includes measuring the delivery person’s body temperature, sanitizing delivery equipment, delivering packages within fixed time slots, wearing all safety gear, etc.
Creative Delivery Methods
Customer is the priority in logistics and so delivery of a product is the most important here. While transmission threats are still there, courier companies need to adopt creative delivery methods in the longer run. The use of non-contact delivery methods, such as lockers and pickup points, combined with real-time tracking and communication with customers, using OTP-based customer verification, and adopting digital payment services are a few delivery upgrading techniques that need to be adopted.
It’s explicitly visible that the pandemic has affected business and the market badly. Every online business owner and the courier partner associated with it want to make its occupation profitable. Logistics companies have to adopt the new scenario and change their price slabs while complying with various customer requirements to make it possible without compromising on the quality of services.
Rethinking Customer Fulfilment
Customer fulfillment is an umbrella covering everything right from when an order is received to when it gets delivered to the customer’s doorstep. It includes a product’s delivery speed, delivery time, tracking facilities, reverse logistics service, and the behavior of a delivery person.
Customer experience is an essential aspect that should be taken care of by business owners and logistics providers while dealing with other adverse situations. A shift is required in the overall process to fulfill customer expectations. It includes revamping the order tracking tools, adopting safe and hygienic methods while delivering products, timely delivery while complying with all governmental regulations, etc.
Consumers are increasingly shifting towards online shopping platforms. Thus, identifying theft and other safety concerns are also significant issues for logistics providers as they can immensely hinder the order fulfillment process. To overcome all kinds of negatives in the new order fulfillment process, an eCommerce seller needs to hire a reputable logistics service provider that follows all the safety regulations while serving the end customers right.