Here’s what you need to know to prepare your store for same-day delivery.
Online shoppers have come to demand same-day delivery more and more in recent years. Retailers have taken notice, with more than 51% already offering same-day delivery as an option at checkout.
But with the landscape of brick and mortar rapidly changing, we expect interest in same-day delivery to pick up even further, especially for small retailers who largely depend on local customers for business.
If this sounds like you, you’re in luck. Here’s a quick guide that outlines how you can prepare your store for same-day delivery right now.
10 Ways to Prepare for Same-Day Local Delivery
Batch Orders Together
By batching orders together, you can consolidate and pick up items at the same time for multiple customers. For example, picking up all the items for ten orders at a time versus one-to-one. After you’ve finished the picking process, items are then sorted into the original customer orders. Doing this is not only more efficient, but cuts down on the number of trips you and your staff take around your store.
Create New Order Alerts
Make sure you have alerts set up that notify you when an order is ready to be picked and delivered. Depending on the software and platform you use, this can be done in-app, through mobile notifications or email.
Test Your Site
Frequently test and make sure your website is working efficiently and seamlessly. This includes checking your site’s load time, misspellings for any new or updated product listings or glitches on your checkout page. There’s no need to deal with frustrated customers for issues that are entirely preventable.
Have Adequately Trained Staff
In order to handle the complexity of same-day delivery, make sure you have enough people to actually do the work. And on top of this, everyone needs to understand each step of your same-day delivery program. This the amount of time spent on each task. Your team also needs to become acquainted with your courier, if you’re not performing delivery yourself.
Be on Top of Your Inventory
While it may seem obvious, you need to be aware of what products you have available at all times. This includes where it’s physically located in your store (or warehouse) and how quickly it takes to restock if something is sold out. For products that are out of stock, it’s best practice to suggest alternative products in its place. Either in a different color or brand all together, assuming items are comparable.
Look for Ways to Simplify Fulfillment
Take a look at what you’ve done in the past and see if there’s anything you can do to make it more streamlined. Talk to everyone involved in fulfilling your current online orders, including those that pick and pack items already. Then you will be able to adequately define the process and timing of how orders will get from your store/warehouse to the customer, including drop-off points and availability of drivers.
Choose Your Delivery Method
Because the delivery component is so important, you need to really think about whether you want to handle it in-house or outsource through a courier service. Doing it yourself means you have control of the entire process, but can put a strain on your operations. In contrast, using a third-party provider, such as FedEx SameDay City, means you don’t have to worry about things like insurance or fuel costs which can add up rather quickly.
Communicate Quickly and Effectively
After your customer has placed their order, provide clear details about when a customer’s items will be dropped off. At the very least you need to send a direct message such as “We received your order at store XYZ. Your package is scheduled to arrive between 2pm and 3pm.” If you don’t know the exact time frame, you can include language such as “before 7pm” so they know same-day is still guaranteed. It’s also important to add space on your checkout page for your customer to fill out delivery instructions, such as drop-off location.
Establish Same-Day Delivery Cut-Off Times
It’s just not realistic to offer same-day delivery all day every day. In order to actually guarantee it can happen, you need to define cut-off times, blackout dates and days for dispatch. For example, maybe you only fulfill same-day orders before 4pm. If same-day is simply not available, like if your store is closed on Mondays, then you need to include this information on your checkout and shipping policy pages.
Limit to a Certain Distance
Unfortunately, not everyone who places an order online can have same-day delivery as an option at checkout. For most businesses that are handling same-day delivery in-house (a.k.a. providing local delivery via their own vehicle), it makes sense to restrict availability to customers within a set distance from your store or even specific zip codes.
If this sounds like something you would want to do, we recommend setting up a flat rate local delivery carrier. Learn more about how you can enable this option in ShipperHQ.
How ShipperHQ Can Support Same-Day Delivery
We understand that for many of you, the quickly evolving retail landscape brings up feelings of uncertainty. Beyond just checking in, we’re here to help you keep selling and offer quick and actionable retail solutions for this unusual time.
If you aren’t already a ShipperHQ customer, sign up for your 15 day FREE trial today to get started with local delivery and same-day delivery. Our team is here and ready to get you up and running as quickly as possible.
Our shipping experts are here for you. We’ve already helped several retailers in the last couple of days find answers to the challenges they are currently facing.
Reach out to see how we can help you continue to meet your buyers shipping and delivery needs.