What are the e-commerce and logistics trends for 2022?

by Will Irvine, Business Development Associate

Last week I browsed the Shopify Future of Commerce report and came across some interesting stats and suggestions on e-commerce and logistics trends for the coming year that are worth highlighting:

  • People will have higher expectations when buying online. This is understandable considering for nearly 2 years they have been shopping almost entirely online. Those offering a speedy courier or delivery service have flourished. In an increasingly digital environment, same-day or next-day delivery isn’t just a nice-to-offer, it’s a necessity.

The key takeaway here is that the vast majority of consumers expect their parcels to be delivered in a timely manner, but also to have flexibility about when and where they receive those parcels. Some companies are turning brick and mortar stores into local fulfilment centres to match this demand and offer drop-off and/or pick-up points for customers. It’s summarised by this quote from the report: “Businesses who don’t meet customer expectations are about to be left behind”.

How can e-commerce and logistics companies improve to meet their customers’ high expectations?

Shopify suggested last-mile deliveries as an area for improvement, highlighting global giants like Ikea, Walmart and UPS who have done some serious work in this area of late.

The increase in demand for same-day delivery services has led to an increase in the number of places customers want orders delivered to. Therefore, it’s important that e-commerce and logistics providers give customers the ability to pick precise and flexible delivery locations. This might be food delivered to a park for a picnic, a clothes order dropped off at their office, an item couriered to a client’s office ahead of a pitch, change the drop-off location of a parcel in-flight, or even have their parcel parachuted to them.

In addition to the above, the last mile delivery continues to be an issue for big on-demand logistics companies. They call it the “doorstop issue”. I think it’s commonplace for most of us to expect a call from our courier with questions like “I think I’m here, what door are you”? “My sat-nav says I’ve arrived, but I’m not sure…” Or “where is the entrance to your flat”? To reduce the reliance on drivers calling for additional directions and increase customer experience, e-commerce and logistics companies need to give customers a way to pinpoint their precise delivery location.

Hermes lets customers add their what3words address to their profile on the MyHermes app

How what3words can help

To help combat these issues, companies like Oddbox, Karrimor SS, Manilife, specific Domino’s stores; and couriers like Hermes, Aramex Shop & Ship, and BJS have all begun accepting what3words addresses from their customers. In addition, the investment arm of Ingka Group, owner and operator of IKEA, invested in what3words’ innovative addressing technology last year.

In cities, this allows customers to specify the correct doorway to the entrance of their apartment, the docking location of their houseboat, direct delivery drivers to the right side of the street or even get their snacks delivered to the middle of a park on a sunny evening. In rural areas, where postcodes cover large areas and signal can be poor, it allows customers to direct the driver to their front door without having to have an intermittently-dropping phone call.

An example of a what3words address field at checkout on the Oddbox website

As well as helping couriers and retailers to meet their customers’ efficiency expectations, what3words plays a part in improving the sustainability of supply chains. Improving the last-mile of delivery means less time per delivery, less engines left on while calling customers to find their homes and fewer failed and subsequent re-deliveries.

what3words is a tool everyone needs in their delivery toolbox. If these problems sound familiar to you and your business, visit our e-commerce and logistics pages to find out more.

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what3words is the simplest way to talk about location. It has divided the world into 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique 3 word address.

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what3words

what3words is the simplest way to talk about location. It has divided the world into 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique 3 word address.