What Your Trucking Company Needs to Know about “Last Mile Delivery”
The way people shop has changed dramatically over the past decade and that means the way people get their purchases delivered has also changed. As brick and mortar retail stores have seen a decline, the trucking industry and delivery services have seen opportunities including with “Last Mile Delivery.”
Last mile delivery is a service that came about to help supplement the capabilities of other package delivery companies such as the United Parcel Service. UPS and other similar companies were created to handle a range of small packages during a time when customers were highly unlikely to make large purchases such as appliances or furniture. But, as online shopping has become the norm for nearly all products, the delivery service industry has had to adapt.
Instead of burdening existing package delivery services with larger parcels than they can easily deliver to their final destination, Last Mile Delivery allows these companies to continue their services while also providing an opportunity to the trucking industry.
How it Works
With Last Mile Delivery, a small package service gets parcels to a transportation hub then a trucking service picks them up and takes them the last few miles to their final destination – typically a small business or residence. A trucking company geared towards these larger packages is able to get them to customers faster and more safely with the use of equipment and crew members capable of delivering even in more congested areas or difficult spots.
Challenges with Last Mile?
Along with an increased need for large product delivery, there are increased challenges. Things that seem small like fuel costs when navigating through a crowded city or driving slowly through a suburb to make a final delivery can add up and make or break a company’s budget. Budget also comes into play when one considers that Amazon is such a major player in the delivery game, and they have very low and strict rates that they need their products shipped at.
Large products also may need special handling and setup upon delivery such as with certain appliances. Having a team that can take care of deliveries like this could give a trucking company an advantage especially as many retailers are offering more of their large products to ship directly from their stores to customers.
Overcoming the Challenges: There are many ways trucking companies can prepare themselves now for current problems and future ones by investing in Last Mile Logistics. This area of logistics can help determine fuel-saving routes to minimize the effects of urban driving and find other solutions to optimize the delivery process from start to finish.
Increasing Need for Last Mile Delivery
The trucking industry has the potential to fill the need for large package delivery to individual residences and small businesses as the trend grows. Consumers are buying more online and there are now few things that cannot be shipped. Retailers who sell larger products and do not currently offer shipping or only offer local delivery will also be seeking out Last Mile Delivery to expand their customer base.
Moreover, as millennials and generation Z consumers make larger purchases, they are likely to do so online. With these younger generations becoming bigger consumers, the opportunity for Last Mile Delivery and other delivery solutions will be increasing for many years.
Strategy for Optimizing Opportunity
As general freight shipping growth becomes more stagnant, trucking companies can supplement their current resources by investing in drivers, equipment and logistics for Last Mile Delivery. This may include hiring local drivers and partnering with other local services to create a complete network capable of serving a greater customer base.
The Benefits of Early Adoption
While it can be tempting to have a wait and see attitude towards any new development or technology, all signs point to that not being a good strategy in the case of Last Mile Delivery. Trucking companies who can start building their team now will have massive advantages in the years to come.
Not only will this afford the companies a chance to take care of underserved customers in the early days of the service, but also set them up for greater success down the road. Early adopters will have more experience and a built-up team and equipment to draw from that will make it easier to scale their business as demand grows.
The Future of Last Mile Delivery
Though Last Mile is already a trend itself and a growing one for the future, there are additional elements that could mean opportunities for freight companies. With the growth of rideshare services and the gig economy, Last Mile is likely to experience its own version of this. Companies who can move fast may be able to take advantage of last minute as well as last mile deliveries if this comes to be.
Better Tracking: Consumers have gotten accustomed to not only faster delivery but being able to see their package’s progress throughout the shipment process. Currently, there is no set standard for how to communicate with customers, but technology is likely to change this sooner rather than later – especially with the growth of disruptive technology like artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Utilizing Warehouses: In order to maximize deliveries, building or taking over existing warehouses in urban areas will be key. This is an area trucking companies could focus to ensure they have space for their last mile packages.
Toronto Trailers: Your Partner in Last Mile Delivery
Ready to take your company to the next level with Last Mile Delivery? Toronto Trailer is riding the wave right along with you by offering large and small delivery supplies from our online store including hand trucks, packing supplies, moving equipment and more!