Logistics Companies Need to Plan for Black Friday Now
As we enter the halfway point of the calendar year, society is preoccupied with warmer temperatures, summer recess, and vacations. Before you know it though, Black Friday will arrive to kick off a month-long shopping frenzy. Companies, including those in the logistics industry, need to start planning for the lucrative holiday shopping season to ensure a successful fourth quarter.
As with most industries, logistics needs to plan months in advance to prepare for the influx of holiday demands. To capitalize on this year’s holiday shopping season, logistics companies and leaders should be aware of the major challenges currently impacting the industry. Some of the most pressing challenges include:
- Rising transportation and fuel costs—with inflation heightening the issue
- Slower delivery times—further exasperated by driver shortages
- Consumers requesting visibility and tracking information for orders
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Additionally, eCommerce has been undergoing significant transformations over the past few years, which has impacted logistics. eCommerce sales have grown astronomically from an annualized run rate of $518 billion in 2019 to $975 billion in Q1 of 2022. This rise has resulted in how logistics companies changing how they operate when dealing with the growing number of eCommerce companies.
Logistics companies are now expected to increase delivery speed as customers grow accustomed to same-day and two-day delivery. This alone requires logistics companies to provide near-instantaneous communication with manufacturers and distributors so they can secure deals and jump-start the shipping processes. Logistics companies are also always looking for ways to reduce shipping costs and provide step-by-step order tracking to customers.
Some methods logistics companies can use to tackle these challenges ahead of the upcoming 2022 year-end holiday shopping season are:
• Utilizing Intermodal transportation—utilizes two or more shipping methods such as boat and truck to increase delivery speeds while reducing costs
• Harnessing intermodal facilities—accumulates various methods of transportation at a strategic location to increase delivery speeds
• Incorporating load-tender-to-invoice processes—software that enables manufacturers and logistics to communicate, transform, and move data between two businesses near-instantaneously
• Implementing an ecosystem integration platform—software that automates B2B transactions, improves productivity, onboards clients quickly, exceeds SLAs, flags alerts, and creates an overall organized B2B integration
As the world continues to re-open, we can expect additional shifts in the retail market. For example, although eCommerce has experienced sizable growth over the past few years, it is gradually regressing to pre-pandemic levels. This can be attributed to a few factors.
One reason could be that as physical stores open back up and COVID-19 cases decrease, consumers are switching from eCommerce shopping to brick-and-mortar shops. Further, the rise in inflation is causing some consumers to cut back on discretionary spending. These shifts may require logistics companies to adapt to evolving order sizes, reprioritize clients, and onboard new buyers.
All things considered, in order for logistics companies to have a successful holiday season, they should consider the above challenges and explore the available solutions.
Including API capabilities into your B2B integration strategy means real-time visibility and data exchanges, along with direct integration into your ERP. Having a unified approach to integration means greater efficiency and increased collaboration between you and your network of EDI and non-EDI trading partners.
Access free demo videos that will walk you through the benefits of having both EDI and API capabilities on the same platform. By learning more about Cleo Integration Cloud, you'll be taking a major step forward in preparing for the holiday rush.