How Retailers Are Getting Customers Their Goods Faster

It wasn’t that long ago that delivery times of three to five days were the norm. Next-day delivery eventually took over as the preferred method thanks to conceptual changes to warehouses and increases in warehouse locations in general, with many people willing to pay a premium for the convenience. Now, however, such delivery options are often expected by consumers – for free.

A 2016 study by Walker Sands shows that half of all people shopping online have made use of one-day shipping options, while 85 percent have opted for two-day shipping at some point. An impressive 10 percent have gone with same-day shipping during the past year, while two-thirds of online shoppers have opted to pick up their order in person at a local store.

The numbers make it clear that companies need to offer multiple shipping options to remain competitive, and one of these needs to be reasonably priced same-day delivery. Same-day delivery is made possible by using modern warehouse and fulfillment strategies. Instead of the warehouses of days past built out in the middle of nowhere on cheap land, they are increasingly being positioned along shipping routes to get products out faster. Robotic pick-and-pack solutions make quick work of fulfillment. Some retailers are even using space in their brick-and-mortar stores to serve as a local fulfillment center to get products out to customers faster.

Top Retailers Expanding Their Offerings

Amazon has recently launched its “Get it Today” service in 12 different markets, and it’s available seven days a week. It’s no surprise, then, that they have been looking at real estate throughout the country to add to the 70 million square feet they already own of fulfillment center space. Target, meanwhile, has taken the brick-and-mortar hybrid approach, converting some store space to serve as an alternative warehouse of sorts. In fact, they fulfilled 30 percent of their online orders from stores in Q4 2015.

When distribution centers are located closer to customers and stores convert some space into an alternative warehouse, customers get their products faster and are more likely to turn into repeat customers. It’s a win-win situation!

This blog post was based off of an article from Logistics Viewpoint. View the original here.