Business Owners, Here’s How to Solve Peak Holiday Shopping Season
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‘Tis the season to make money, falalalala, lalalala! Christmas season is also peak shopping season, and for many businesses, that means it’s about to get very, very busy.
Singapore customers, even at the best of times, cannot be described as “laid back”. Well, guess what, they get even more kancheong (antsy) during this period. Amidst end of year sales, 11.11, Black Friday and Boxing Day, after the flurry of online shopping and frantically grabbing deals left, right and centre, they’ll be worrying about their purchases getting stuck or lost in the mail or not arriving in time for the festive season.
It’s also a nail-biting period for business owners. This is make-it-or-break-it time — your sales have the potential to spike, but you have to be ready to ensure last-mile delivery happens smoothly, especially if you’re using your own fleet or delivering parcels yourself. Capitalising on the season’s opportunities while managing your own resources can be a delicate balancing act.
Let’s take a look at some of the peak holiday shopping season delivery issues businesses might face and some solutions to them.
Issue #1: Manpower
If you thought you were short-handed on normal days, wait till holiday season rolls around, when businesses scramble to hire extra staff to deal with additional deliveries, customer service and so on.
Instead of desperately posting job ads and then praying that the successful candidates will actually show up for work, one solution is to look for a ready-made workforce that can do jobs on demand.
For instance, if you need to increase your delivery fleet, why not partner with Lalamove? They’ll supply the manpower you need on-demand.
Lalamove can also help you reduce operational costs by letting you save on fixed overheads like vehicle purchase and payroll. The costs are scaled to suit your needs, so you save more money when business is quiet and can deliver more during peak periods.
At any one time, Lalamove has 55,000 drivers ready to be activated islandwide, all vetted and trained.
Issue #2: Restricted customer base
In bigger countries such as the US or even Malaysia, businesses don’t always deliver to all states due to operational issues, delivery limitations or sensitivity of goods (such as cakes).
But in pint-sized Singapore, there is no excuse not to deliver anywhere on the island — even to ulu areas like Tuas, Woodlands North or Changi.
Some businesses may decline to go to certain areas, but with a delivery partner like Lalamove, you’ll be able to deliver to the whole of Singapore, including Sentosa. However, do take note of additional charges for Secured Zones like immigration checkpoints, Jurong Island and shipyards.
Thanks to Lalamove, you can expand your reach to all of Singapore. Huat ah!
Issue #3: Fatigue from route planning
If you’ve ever tried making deliveries yourself, you’ll know that route planning can drive you nuts, especially when one person has to make over 100 deliveries per day. In other words, you could find yourself in Google Maps hell.
But with a whole fleet of Lalamove drivers at your fingertips, all you have to do is batch deliveries according to area and off they go.
Lalamove offers multi-stop delivery, which lets you save money by grouping up to 19 orders in one trip (1 pick-up and 19 drop-off). You’ll also get to save with less mileage and effort, which is good for your company’s wallet and could be better for the environment in terms of emissions.
Issue #4: Briefing during peak periods
During the sales rush, you barely have time to eat, sleep or go to the toilet, let alone brief new drivers while keeping a straight face. Having to instruct and guide them is not only stressful but can also take precious minutes away from your business.
Lalamove has a favourite driver feature that lets you have your orders taken by your favourite drivers first. So, you can use drivers you are familiar with and have had good experiences with previously. They’ll already know the ins and outs of your operational processes and how you like certain items to be handled and delivered.
And let’s be honest — it’s always comforting to see familiar faces who already know how things work.
Issue #5: Uncertainty of transporting sensitive goods
Are you dealing with sensitive or fragile goods that require careful handling, cold chain transport and so on? Then you’ll know that it’s sometimes better to just deliver the goods yourself, rather than risk someone else screwing things up for you.
If the product reaches its destination in bad shape, you’ll not only have to placate an irate customer but could also lose money through refunds, unsellable products or bad reviews.
However, cold trucks don’t come cheap, and training your own fleet of staff can be more trouble than it’s worth, especially if there is a high turnover rate and you’re constantly having to train and retrain.
One way to solve this issue is to use an established delivery partner like Lalamove, with their fleet of experienced drivers and refrigerated lorries.
Lalamove even has an e-signature feature so you can get instant updates with proof of delivery. That way, you’ll always have proof that your item has been delivered and received.
Issue #6: Items getting lost
Apart from damaged goods, another headache for sellers is items getting lost and not reaching their destination. Other than bad customer reviews, you might also have to fork out the cash to offer a replacement or refund.
Sure, you could implement a reliable tracking feature for your own delivery fleet. But with the holiday season just weeks away, it’s easier to partner with a last-mile delivery service like Lalamove, with all the systems already in place to track your orders in real-time.
Issue #7: Not having a suitable vehicle for delivery
Sometimes, the car you use for deliveries is just too small for certain items. Or perhaps your delivery van is in the workshop and you need another vehicle for a couple of days. Or maybe you’ve sold a one-off item or received a special request from a customer that’s just a bit too bulky for your usual vehicle.
A delivery partner like Lalamove has delivery vehicles of all types and sizes, including motorcycles, cars, MPVs, 1.7m and 2.4m vans and 10ft and 14ft lorries.
Simply select the best vehicle for your needs and then add on any features that would make your customers even happier.
Issue #8: Unable to handle urgent orders
It’s Christmas tomorrow, and your customer is demanding a cake and flowers ASAP because it’s their kid’s birthday. They would have called earlier, but it slipped their mind. So how?
As a business owner, last-minute requests can seem unreasonable, but you’ve got to keep your cool. If you’ve got the goods on hand, this is a great chance to make another sale. The only problem? You’ve got to have the means to send out the item ASAP in pristine condition.
Headaches like this can be outsourced to a delivery partner like Lalamove. Lalamove can transport sensitive, urgent items on the same day within 55 minutes flat.
They can deliver perishables like flowers, food like cakes or even larger orders from restaurants for big families in the same household.
Best of all, Lalamove delivers 24/7, so it’s never too early or too late in the day.
‘Tis the season for Lalamove
This festive season, let your hair down and make merry — while also fulfilling your customer’s orders! Partner with Lalamove for stress-free peak holiday season deliveries.
Lalamove offers transparent pricing which is instantly displayed when you input your order, monthly statements to make life easier for your business’s accounting records, and can even gather multiple users in one business account.
Limited-time festive promotion
The post Business Owners, Here’s How to Solve Peak Holiday Shopping Season appeared first on the MoneySmart blog.
The post Business Owners, Here’s How to Solve Peak Holiday Shopping Season appeared first on MoneySmart.sg.
Original article: Business Owners, Here’s How to Solve Peak Holiday Shopping Season.
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