What is Last-Mile Tracking and How it Improves Delivery Efficiency
Mar 21, 2023
8 mins read
For as long as online delivery and services have been around, the question plaguing last-mile delivery managers has remained unchanged: how can they create an engaging journey while delivering value at every stage of the process and how can last-mile tracking help?
Digital technologies have evolved and birthed an empowered customer. The modern customer is aware of their needs and possesses the knowledge and skills to efficiently utilize information and tools to fulfill them. As a result, the balance of control has shifted, with sales being determined primarily by the quality of the customer experience.
The survey conducted by MetaPack highlights that more than 90% of customers consider delivery a crucial factor when making online purchases. There’s also a growing trend of customers prioritizing fast delivery options. Another survey by Deloitte found that 63% of consumers are willing to pay extra for same-day delivery. In comparison, 96% are willing to pay more for faster delivery options, including same-day delivery. These statistics underscore the significance of efficient and timely last-mile tracking for businesses to meet customer expectations and gain a competitive edge in the market.
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What is last-mile tracking?
The process of monitoring and managing the final stage of delivery, which is often the most complex and expensive part of the supply chain, is known as last-mile tracking. This means that packages are tracked from the minute they leave the transportation hub to when they reach the customers’ doorstep. The attempt is to provide end-to-end visibility in the final stage of the delivery process.
Not only does real-time visibility help efficiently manage large-scale delivery operations, but it also ensures that the orders find their way to the customers in time, keeping them happy. Its benefits for the business, as well as the consumer, are too many to count.
What’s the aim of last-mile tracking
Last-mile tracking is a critical component for companies seeking to ensure the secure delivery of goods and monitor the movement of their stock. By providing end-to-end visibility, last-mile carrier tracking solutions aim to prevent theft and optimize delivery routes.
This visibility is achieved through a combination of internal last-mile carrier tracking for businesses and last-mile tracking for customers, which industry leaders have identified as an emerging business requirement.
Effective last-mile providers must be equipped to provide both shipment visibility for customers and internal delivery solutions for businesses. By handling the visibility requirements of logistics providers and customers, last-mile carrier tracking enables companies to optimize their supply chain and improve customer satisfaction.
In today’s consumer-driven market, last-mile tracking is a critical aspect of logistics businesses, allowing them to meet rising expectations for fast and reliable delivery. As such, businesses must prioritize last-mile tracking to remain competitive in the industry.
The benefits of last mile tracking
As the last-mile delivery market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 14.78% between 2021 and 2026, investing in technologies that meet customers’ increasing demands is crucial. However, more reasons exist to adopt last-mile tracking solutions in your business beyond this growth trend. Here are some benefits of integrating last-mile tracking into your business strategy:
- Enhanced customer satisfaction: With last-mile tracking, customers receive real-time updates on their delivery status, including the ETA and any issues such as delivery exceptions, that can cause potential delays. This transparency helps to reduce anxiety and uncertainty around the delivery process, empowering customers to have more control over when and where they receive their packages.
- Minimized downtime: Real-time tracking of packages allows companies to identify and address issues during the delivery process, such as traffic congestion or driver availability. As a result, companies can improve their operational efficiency and reduce the risk of delivery delays or missed deliveries.
- Real-time monitoring: Last-mile tracking can help improve delivery security by alerting companies in real time if a package is lost or stolen. This immediate notification enables companies to take swift action to recover the package or provide a replacement to the customer, thereby enhancing the overall customer experience.
- Market differentiation: In today’s competitive e-commerce landscape, offering last-mile tracking as part of your delivery process can give you a distinct advantage. By giving customers greater visibility and control over their deliveries, companies can differentiate themselves from their competitors and earn customers who keep returning.
How does last mile tracking increase transparency?
Last-mile tracking solutions play a crucial role in improving the transparency of the delivery process, which is increasingly important to today’s consumers. Customers want to track their shipments from when they are dispatched until they arrive at their doorstep.
It streamlines supply chain processes, making them simpler, faster, and more organized. It enhances transparency by providing a range of benefits, such as:
- Monitoring fleet or driver activity to ensure timely delivery and identify any issues that arise
- Predicting and preventing theft or pilferage, providing real-time alerts for any unusual activity
- Planning efficient routes to optimize delivery times and reduce transportation costs
- Real-time billing and invoicing, allowing businesses to accurately track and manage their shipping expenses
- Quick customer feedback enables companies to respond promptly to questions or concerns.
How last mile tracking helps in managing last-mile delivery costs
By providing valuable insights into past trends, last-mile tracking enables businesses to make informed decisions that reduce operational costs without making drastic changes to their logistics processes.
Businesses can monitor the routes taken by their fleet drivers and identify traffic patterns, idling time, and driving time. Armed with this information, they can use route optimization to reduce fuel costs and delivery times, leading to significant cost savings in the long run.
This also helps improve the overall quality of the last-mile delivery process, reducing the number of customer inquiries and complaints and ultimately improving customer satisfaction. Customers can benefit from real-time delivery updates, reducing waiting times and missed deliveries and further enhancing the customer experience.
Last-mile tracking solutions provide electronic proof of delivery, eliminating the need for unnecessary paperwork and contributing to more accurate delivery records. By reducing the physical storage space required for delivery confirmations, businesses can also reduce the time and costs associated with managing paperwork.
What makes last-mile tracking a challenge?
In today’s market, transparency, speed, and flexibility have become essential requirements for deliveries, as per a recent study by Salesforce. Meeting these expectations is crucial for a company’s success, as customers demand a seamless and reliable delivery experience. However, making this possible comes with its own set of challenges for companies:
- Incorrect or incomplete delivery addresses: Fuzzy addresses can cause substantial delays and failed deliveries, posing a significant challenge for delivery drivers in locating the correct destination.
- Limited visibility: Say that it’s a busy day and your delivery agent has to stop at multiple locations in a short period. Limited visibility can keep your drivers from prioritizing deliveries and monitoring the status of each of them.
- Traffic and road conditions: Delivery is frequently in urban areas where traffic congestion and unpredictable road conditions can cause significant delays. These factors can significantly impact delivery times and make meeting deadlines or customer expectations difficult.
- Inefficient routing: If the existing fleet tracking systems report inaccurate locations and estimated delivery times, they can increase reattempted deliveries considerably, impacting the efficiency of fleet operations and leading to additional costs.
- Technology limitations: Unreliable GPS signals, outdated software systems, and poor network coverage can all add to the last-mile tracking limitations. Manual dispatch processes may require frequent communication between dispatchers and drivers regarding delivery instructions or status updates, leading to time-consuming interruptions that can compromise driver safety.
An efficient logistics network that involves clear communication and real-time updates is crucial to overcome these challenges. This ensures a successful last-mile delivery process, vital in delivering goods to the end user.
Choosing Locus’ last mile tracking solution
Locus’ fleet tracking software enables timely SMS notifications to inform your customers of their delivery status at each fulfillment stage. You can create a seamless and frictionless delivery experience that meets your customers’ expectations through interactive customer-driver communication and real-time feedback tracking.
- Gain visibility and control of your logistics operations
Control Tower can help dispatchers maintain active control over their fleets during any stage in the fulfillment journey to address exceptions like unscheduled halts, deviations all in a single dashboard and provide exact ETA and order status to the customer.
- Make better decisions with the Driver Companion App
Locus’ Driver Companion App helps make better decision-making with daily task management, navigation, and real-time communications. Drivers can collect payments and multi-format digital proof of delivery, making the delivery process seamless. Meanwhile, dispatchers access on-ground execution data from the app to track driver activities in real time to manage exceptions and stay ahead of SLAs.
- Empower your customers with real-time delivery tracking
Locus’ tracking page generates order tracking links with precise estimated time of arrivals (ETAs), enabling your customers to monitor and track their delivery status in real time. With this feature, you can provide your customers with an enhanced delivery experience and increase their confidence in your logistics operations.
The best route for last-mile tracking needs to minimize the distance between stops, maximize delivery efficiency, and minimize fuel consumption. An efficient fleet tracking software can help you do just that.
Ready to optimize your last-mile delivery performance? Try Locus’ Fleet Tracking Solution today and experience the benefits of efficient routing.
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What is Last-Mile Tracking and How it Improves Delivery Efficiency
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