Two decades ago, "logistics" didn't denote comprehensive, technology-heavy freight management. Logistics providers started as truck brokers.
But over time, technology (the internet specifically) introduced an age of global e-commerce that is changing consumer behavior. Supply chains are required to operate with more efficiency than ever.
A recent article stated that 96% of consumers see track & trace abilities as very important to their online purchasing decisions.
The article also noted that about 48% have abandoned their online shipoping carts of they didn't qualify for free shipping, or if the shipping cost was higher than they expected. Consumer demands are high, and companies are struggling to compete with the Amazons and Walmarts of online retailing.
The power is in the hand of the consumer; how can companies stay on top of fulfillment demand?
Over the past two decades, logistics providers have transformed into all-inclusive 3PLs that are able to handle the complete transportation process. Competitive providers have up-to-date technology and real-time customer service. It's not enough to offer partial services or rely on a dot-com model that has no real-time routing center. The best providers will make work minimal on the client-end.
What supply chain managers shouldknow about consumer behavior trends is that they are still willing to wait for shipments up to seven days, as longa s the shipment includes free shipping.
Consumers place higher importance on value-added services such as free shipping, customer service and hassle free returns over how long the product takes to deliver.
The best way for logistics providers to stay competitive is to keep themselves streamlined, service-oriented and up-to-date on technology to ease the process on the client-end.
How do YOU think technology will continue to shape logistics?