Since the onslaught of COVID-19, online sales have surged incredibly globally, and the numbers are even more staggering in India.

This phenomenal growth in eCommerce is not merely a temporary surge. Retail experts forecast that the shift from traditional brick-and-mortar shopping to the convenience of online shopping is here to stay. And amidst this shift, one customer demand stands out above the rest—same-day delivery.

But what exactly is same-day delivery? How does it work, and why is it causing such a stir in the retail industry? Let’s unpack these questions and many more in this guide and understand a concept that is reshaping the future of retail and redefining what we consider ‘fast’.


What is Same-Day Delivery?

Same-day delivery is a service that ensures customers receive their purchases on the very day the order is placed.

Once an order is placed online, it is processed, packed, and dispatched from the warehouse or store, all within a matter of hours. The delivery driver then collects the order and makes a beeline for your doorstep, ensuring you receive your order on the very day you clicked ‘buy’. This is where the magic of same-day delivery comes to life.

To illustrate, let’s take the example of DTDC’s same-day delivery. In select cities, DTDC offers same-day delivery under their DTDC Prime service. This service is designed for intra-city deliveries and promises excellent speed without burning a hole in the customer’s pocket.

To give you an idea of the cost, a 500-gram package delivered within the same city via DTDC Prime can range from INR 80 to INR 250. For a 1-kilogram package sent to a different state, the rate can range from INR 300 to INR 750.

But there’s a catch. Customers must place their orders before a certain cut-off time to avail of same-day delivery. This is necessary for businesses to have enough time to process, fulfil, and deliver orders within the same day.


Benefits of Same-Day Delivery

  • When customers receive their orders quickly, it significantly enhances their shopping experience, making them more likely to make repeat purchases.
  • Same-day delivery can lead to higher conversion rates. This service can be influential in sectors like flowers and gift baskets, where over 40% of shoppers might abandon their purchase if same-day delivery isn’t available.
  • Offering same-day delivery can provide businesses with a competitive advantage, especially in a landscape where large companies like Amazon set the standard.
  • Offering same-day delivery can help combat cart abandonment, as over 25% of shoppers have reported they would abandon their online purchase if same-day shipping wasn’t available.
  • Same-day delivery can be a valuable tool for customer retention.


Challenges of Same-Day Delivery

  • Fulfilling and delivering orders within a tight turnaround time often means added resources, which can increase operating costs.
  • With same-day delivery, businesses need to plan their delivery routes carefully to ensure products reach customers within the promised timeframe.
  • Striking the right balance between providing fast deliveries and maintaining reasonable costs is a significant challenge.


How can a Business Offer Same-Day Delivery?

Target Specific/Limited Pin Codes

Targeting specific or limited pin codes is necessary because same-day delivery‌ is a localized service. The logistics of making deliveries on the same day orders are placed require a focus on geographic proximity, which is why businesses need to be strategic and concentrate their efforts on limited regions.

These selections should be based on several factors, such as the density of potential customers, the ability to efficiently route deliveries, and the proximity to your fulfilment centres. By focusing on specific pin codes, businesses can ensure that the service is both feasible and efficient.


Use Delivery Management Software

Implementing technology to streamline operations is no longer an option but a necessity. DMS is a tool designed to help business owners, fleet operators, or anyone tasked with overseeing deliveries plan, manage, optimize, and automate their delivery processes.

This tool is integral to efficient logistics management, as it provides real-time tracking, route optimisation, and advanced analytics to improve overall delivery performance.


Use Multiple Fulfilment Centres

Geographic proximity plays a crucial role in same-day delivery services. It’s simply a fact that the farther away a customer is from your warehouse, the more challenging it is to deliver an order within a single day.

By leveraging multiple fulfilment centres in different locations, especially in large cities, businesses can practically bring their inventory closer to their customers. This, in turn, significantly reduces delivery times, making same-day delivery a viable option for a larger portion of your customer base.

For instance, suppose a business uses a solution like NimbusPost warehouse and fulfilment services, which offers an end-to-end fulfilment solution with centres scattered across the country. In this case, the business can choose to distribute its inventory among these fulfilment centres according to its customers’ demographic and geographic characteristics. This means that when a customer places an order, it can be fulfilled from the nearest centre, ensuring the delivery can feasibly be completed within the same day.


Route Optimisation

Route optimisation is about determining the most efficient routes to take for a series of delivery stops, considering factors like traffic conditions, the distance between stops, delivery priority, and time windows, among others. With optimised routes, delivery personnel can complete more deliveries within shorter periods, which is particularly crucial in a same-day delivery scenario.



Set Your Distance Limit

By setting up a distance limit, you can help manage your customers’ expectations and ensure that their orders will arrive within the promised delivery window. Unfortunately, as much as businesses would like to, it’s simply impossible to cover every destination within a day. This is due to a variety of factors, from the physical limits of human endurance to the practical constraints of time and geography.

As a rule of thumb, many businesses limit their same-day delivery to about 60 kilometres radius of their warehouse or fulfilment centre. This is a reasonable distance that a driver can cover multiple times a day, allowing for multiple drops without overexerting themselves or the vehicle. It also prevents disappointments that could arise from missed delivery times, which could potentially harm your business’s reputation.


Decide on a Cut-Off Time

Cut-off time is the final hour within a day when a customer can place an order and still expect it to be delivered on the same day.

Determining an appropriate cut-off time is a bit of a balancing act. You need to consider the operational capabilities of your business and the expectations of your customers. For example, if an order is placed at midnight, it’s unrealistic to assume that it can be delivered on the same day due to the various processes. However, an order placed early in the day, say by 10 AM, can reasonably be shipped out and delivered the same day.



The future of eCommerce is here, and it’s faster than ever. 80% of shoppers want same-day delivery, and businesses that can meet this demand are in a prime position to gain a competitive edge. A fast delivery service not only pleases customers but also fosters customer loyalty and drives sales growth. It’s a testament to the adage: time is indeed money.

NimbusPost is a courier aggregator whose partners are known for same-day and hyperlocal delivery across the country. It is obvious that online sellers signing up with NimbusPost will enjoy a courier recommendation engine, shipping rate calculator, quick COD remittance, smart warehousing, and much more.




Which courier does same-day delivery in India?

NimbusPost offers same-day delivery in India through multiple courier partners, ensuring that your package is delivered swiftly and securely.


What is the difference between same-day delivery and shipping?

“Shipping” refers to the process by which the product leaves the supplier’s warehouse. It involves packaging, labeling, and the initiation of the product’s transit. On the other hand, “same-day delivery” is a promise that the customer will receive the product on the same day the order is placed. This involves both shipping (the departure of the product from the warehouse) and delivery (the arrival of the product at the customer’s doorstep), all completed within a single day.



Can we send a courier in one day?

Yes, you can send your courier within one day. This is typically known as “same-day delivery” or “express delivery.” Many courier services offer this option as a solution for urgent delivery needs. These express services prioritize time sensitivity and swift transportation to ensure that your package reaches its destination within the span of a single day.


Does 1-day delivery mean the next day?

Yes, “1-day delivery” typically means that the goods will be delivered the next day, assuming they are ordered within a specified cut-off time and are readily available for dispatch.

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