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Topic(s): Customer Experience

You probably don’t own the crucial step in online sales. Here’s how to deal with it:

Here we are again, confined in our homes. With most retailers closing their doors, online delivery moves back into the spotlight. Customers expect a shopping experience to be fast, efficient, and easy. The most important element? The delivery. 74% of consumers say that the quality of the delivery is important in their intention to buy again. So do not underestimate the customer’s anticipation to unbox their purchase.

Delivery = key

However, there are some inconvenient truths e-commence managers like to avoid. Did you already realize that delivery is the only step in the buyer journey where your customer sees someone face to face? Let that one sink in. If that doesn't make you uncomfortable enough, think about this: you don't control the most important step in the customer journey... your delivery partner does.

Okay, now that we've recovered from the first shock, let's discuss how you can get a grip on the situation. Even though delivery is controlled by someone else, you still need to stay as close to your customers as possible. Meeting their expectations is everything. The best way to do that is to ask for their feedback. In this particular case, feedback right after the delivery. You might have metrics on the pre-determined service level criteria with your delivery partners, but those often don't take customer feedback into account.

The added value of customer feedback in negotiations

Without customer feedback, you don't have a full view of how your delivery partner is performing. The delivery drivers become your brand ambassador because they are the only person a customer will see in the buying process. Rude and impatient drivers, late deliveries, or damaged parcels all impact your brand perception.

Customer feedback will bring this to the surface and when analyzed professionally, you will have quantitive data to discuss this with your delivery company. Backing your case with feedback could tip the scale into a better negotiation position for the contract renewal. It’s a great addition to the hard service level agreement criteria to renegotiate your terms. In a more negative scenario, the feedback could also be so shockingly bad that you want to look for a new logistics partner altogether.

Partner with a delivery company that meets expectations

It doesn't have to be all negative though, some delivery companies are amazing and their operational excellence can boost your revenue too. Elaborate tracking possibilities, notifications when they are close-by or same-day delivery are great elements in the delivery experience. 93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases with companies that offer speed, convenience, and excellent customer service.

When you are comparing partnerships or looking to renew your contract, it makes sense to check the customer feedback to see if they appreciate the additional value or if you have to move on to someone that can provide it.

What to take-away from this blog

As an e-commerce manager, your responsibilities have increased over the last year. With online retail becoming increasingly important to drive revenue so is the relationship with your logistics partner. They control the last and most important step in the delivery process and function as your brand ambassadors. Customer feedback can help you find out if they are meeting your customer's expectations if you need to renegotiate the contract or look for an alternative.