Optimization of the Customer Experience

What does the customer need?

Whether it’s same-day delivery, ship-from-store or track & trace – when traditional drivers of success, such as price and product range, are no longer enough to inspire consumers, the role of service in transport and delivery becomes increasingly significant.

End customer requirements of retailers and manufacturers are constantly increasing. They expect cross-channel shopping on responsive websites, simple ordering processes, uncomplicated payment methods and free shipping - by the next day and in more and more cases, the same day.

Accordingly, many manufacturers and retailers are relying on innovative extra offers in order to provide optimal customer service and meet the increasing standards of consumers.

To accomplish this, existing processes must be continuously optimized and newly developed. Supply chains in particular are faced with major challenges.

Shopping experiences with added value

The service level on offer is highly influenced by product availability, which ultimately determines whether or not end customers decide to make purchases. For this reason, retailers and manufacturers focus intently on inventory optimization and quality improvement. However, this makes delivery channels longer and on average, they require four to five service providers to reach all end customers. In response, many businesses attempt to serve all sales channels from a central inventory. For these requirements, Arvato Supply Chain Solutions has developed a new transport management system that enables its users to reach around 350 million consumers from one inventory.

Not only do customer-oriented retailers provide all products for end customers, they also offer them various delivery speeds and locations, keeping shipping costs low. Shop operators can promise delivery within three days – throughout Europe. Experience shows: if this timeframe is not adhered to, customers question their purchase decisions and the return rate rises exponentially. They also want to be able to track the merchandise shipment from the day they placed the order. With new information technology, this is easy to do.

It’s all about services

In certain cases, same-day delivery can also be a useful addition to a supplier’s range of services – for medication shipments where time is of the essence, for example. Even if companies must pay additional costs to offer this service, it creates competitive advantages that justify higher expenditure in the long term. And same-day delivery is a good marketing argument because not all retailers offer the service, making it an effective unique selling proposition.

The same applies to ship-from-store – a service in which the local retail partner is integrated into the distribution process of online shopping. The logistics are taken care of from the store, enabling end consumers to receive their merchandise more quickly. This not only improves the shopping experience for end customers, but also results in the opportunity to boost visitor frequency and extra sales in brick-and-mortar shops.

Same-day delivery, ship-from-store and shipment tracking with real-time track & trace – Arvato Supply Chain Solutions systematically moves end consumers to the focus of entrepreneurial retailing along the entire order-to-cash cycle. We cover all end customer touchpoints and can even derive their consumption behavior from analyzing the data generated in the process – true value added for our customers and their growth.