Deal with Shipping Delays: What Causes delays & Ways to Improve It in 2022
As the expectations of consumers increase in the direction of two-day as well as same-day delivery options, there is less chance of errors in the delivery along with the delivery process.
Yet, despite your best efforts to prevent delays in shipping, a delay will always occur. Even the most meticulously planned shipping and fulfillment services occasionally encounter major roadblocks. This is why, in addition to knowing how to prevent delays in delivery, you should be aware of how to handle these issues when they occur.
After two years of strain on supply chains across the globe–where transportation routes were cut off by the outbreak of extreme weather, as well as an important canal blocking–the ship owners around the world believe that creating resilience in the shipping system is long due.
How does a late shipment affect your E-commerce business?
Let’s now see the impact of late delivery on the time you must make a payment to the expenditure and income account at the closing of the current month.
In the first place, if you’re not communicating with your carrier and don’t know the location of your shipment, you will not be able to address any customer complaints when there is a delay. You’ll have to fumble for a straw before all the people who want to know: “Where is my order?”
In the first paragraph, as we mentioned at the beginning, the buyer who receives their order in a hurry is disappointed and feels to be betrayed. He is concerned that his trust was in the wrong hands, although he got the item he was looking for. Therefore, it is vital to inform customers of their orders’ status to know the reason for the delay.
An untimely delivery can cause customer discontent and sometimes, the possibility of a bad review and turn into an issue. It can damage the reputation of your business even if the majority of the reviews are favorable and may cause thousands of prospective customers to switch to competitors, reducing the profits you earn.
Main Causes of shipping delays
1. The shortage of labor
COVID-19-positive cases, as well as worldwide worker shortages, have led to delays in shipping.
The number of job openings within the US has also reached a record-setting level. However, UK employers are facing the largest shortage of job applicants
Delays are inevitable if there aren’t enough people to complete important tasks essential to the supply chain.
2. Customs problems
Another problem that could lead to the delay of shipping is the alteration in customs declarations resulting from Britain’s departure. The new customs checks that began on the 1st of January 2022 have led to an increase in imports and delays for cargoes that originated in European countries. Additionally, the introduction of complete border inspections beginning in July 2022 will cause further delays for cargo coming from or to countries that are part of the EU.
To prevent possible delays in shipping, independent freight forwarders must use more efficient software for planning and forecasting to ensure that equipment and space are available. In addition, they must reserve their space well in advance and plan their shipment taking into account the current market conditions, including delays during peak seasons, as well as space and equipment available at the locations.
3. Lost packages
Perhaps the most difficult experience a client has to go through is the inquiry: “Where is my package?”
What is the reason for a package to be lost? There are a variety of possible causes that could range from simple misplacement to damaged shipping labels or accidentally removed.
Can technology help? The proof of delivery can serve a vital role in safeguarding all parties, from the company to the intended recipient, with the ability to track and track in real-time that the courier, as well as the client, will know exactly where the parcel is in shipping.
4. Failed delivery attempt
To keep the spotlight off of couriers, their customers may be responsible for an unsuccessful delivery attempt if no one is present to accept the parcel.
If an attempt is attempted to deliver the package, the driver will need to move to the next orders to ensure there are no delays. They usually have a set period to wait to hear back (hint that it’s not long).
This issue is easily fixed by using the correct tracking and trace technology. This will ensure that your customers are informed with real-time information and can know when they must be at home to pick up the package.
5. Changes in schedules and challenges with traffic
Shipping times can be delayed due to schedule changes or other traffic issues, particularly when using Inland Transportation. This is especially true in peak times like Chinese New Year or the festive season. In addition, many factories shut down for more than an entire week over these holidays, and full production was not returning for nearly one month. Therefore, logistics firms, as well as shippers, carriers, and other transporters, must handle this surge and the resulting backlogs when normal working hours resume.
How avoid shipping delays
eCommerce companies may employ a variety of strategies to prevent delays in delivery. This includes:
Set a minimum/maximum delivery time
You can choose the fastest delivery time to respond quickly to your order. Delivery times must be reasonable in that they’re not subjected to pressure. However, the delivery time should not dissuade customers. When clients place an order, they hope they will get their items within the specified time. Therefore, it is a good idea to have a time frame for delivery.
Count holidays in advance
Businesses typically see increased sales and orders around the time of the holidays. Unfortunately, many couriers aren’t available on public holidays. This is why you need to take alternative measures to ensure that your orders are delivered on time. To prevent delivery delays, Always send your orders before the start of the holidays.
It’s extremely frustrating when a client places an order for a product that’s not available. In addition, it’s often obvious that certain products are more well-known than others. Because of this, inventory should be regularly updated to ensure that the products are replaced with those already delivered.
Prepare the Warehouse
As your business on eCommerce grows as expands, more and more orders will arrive on your site. Always keep a warehouse in place to deliver your items to their destination. Make sure you organize the most well-known items first, after which you can sort out the less popular items.
Get Automated Logistics Software
Automation is a significant factor in reducing delivery time. Purchasing automated logistics software may be costly, but it also helps delay delivery. Automated software decides on which items to ship based on your order time.
How to deal with a customer when there is a shipping delay
1. Communicate with the Customer
The first thing you need to take to address delays is to reach out to your customers to explain that they aren’t receiving their orders by the deadline. While emails or a specific response channel such as Facebook Messenger are good options, calling directly to your Customer is more effective. You’ll have the ability to offer an individual answer to the issue, and your clients will be grateful for the effort you’ve put into calling them. Review every aspect of the delays in the order and provide them with estimates of the time they can receive their order.
2. Take Ownership of the Situation
This may be more difficult to do than it sounds. However, you must acknowledge the issue and face the ire of the client in the event that it happens. There’s no way to ignore the problem.
Accepting the situation and doing your best to deal with it can actually put your character and allow you to get the most out of the difficult circumstance.
It is crucial that you are perceived to be working in the client’s best interest to ensure that you are working with their best interests in mind.
3. Offer gift cards and discounts
Discounts and vouchers are another way of showing your customers that you value and appreciate their business, regardless of times when everything doesn’t work according to schedule.
Giving discounts and gift cards will help ease their stress about late delivery. This method may require effort; however, it’s far cheaper than having your customers write negative reviews or not buy from your company in the future.
4. Offer free shipping
Free shipping can lower the expectations of your customers regarding speedier delivery. Customers will not expect same-day or next-day delivery if you provide free shipping. After lowering their expectations to a minimum, you’ll be able to strive to improve the speed of delivery and prevent any delays from benefiting from the competitive advantages that come from faster shipping.
5. Consider using multiple carriers
If delays in shipping frequently occur with your provider and you have multiple carriers to meet various delivery requirements could be the best option. It will require some investigation by you to determine the strengths of each carrier.
You could, for instance, choose one service for domestic parcels and another for international parcels. This could help you avoid a lot of anxiety.
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