Blog post

Making the last mile easier remains a challenge

By Gene Alvarez | February 27, 2014 | 0 Comments

CRM Strategy and Customer ExperienceDigital Commerce Technologies

OK so I’m sitting here waiting for a rescheduled delivery of a rug that was shipped with a signature required. Well why am I sitting here you ask, I missed the first two delivery attempts. The first miss was because the site didn’t send me a tracking number that would have enabled me to track the progress of the shipment and then coordinate to be home when it got there. Instead that turned into a post-it notice on the door and no rug. However there was an action I could take. The post-it said that if I signed the back and left it where they could see it that they would leave the rug at the door. So I gave that a try. Well that failed to work. The delivery agent wrote down on another post-it that it must be signed for “in person”. So I went online and paid a rescheduling fee ($5) to re-scheduled it for today and I’m sitting here waiting and waiting no knowing when for this rug to be delivered but its been out on the road since 5:08 AM (I now have a tracking number).
This all got me thinking about others that may be experiencing this and who do you think the consumer would blame and punish for this? The carrier? The retailer? Well I believe it will be the retailer. Why? Because I can’t choose the carrier the retailer did that for me.
The next thing that came to mind was this past holiday season and all those orders that never made it to customers on time and how Amazon.com had to apologize with vouchers for their shippers’ issues.
There is a lesson to be learned here. When it comes to customer experience organizations need to take into account all aspects of the customer experience including that, which may be handled by a partner. This includes the setting of service level agreements that are in line with the seller’s brand. Yet many organization view shipping and returns as “been there done that” and mobile and social selling as “the next big thing” both are of equal value to the overall customer experience and it is the sum of all of the events a customer goes through that drives customer satisfaction that can lead to loyalty and even customer advocacy. How important is the last mile to you when you shop online? Do valentine roses smell as good to your partner on 2/15 than on 2/14? What are your views?

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