Anyone that owns a business knows the more tasks you can automate, the better off you are. In the startup phase, bootstrapping is essential. However, as your e-commerce brand and order volume grow, you must find ways to save time on crucial tasks, like shipping products out to customers.
Automated shipping is ideal for handling large order volumes without pulling your hair out. As the name would suggest, automatic shipping is the automation of all the moving parts that get a product order from point A (a warehouse) to point B (a customer’s address).
Automated shipping removes many of the manual tasks involved in picking, packing, shipping, and tracking orders. We’ll cover everything you need to know about how to automate your shipping while boosting customer experience.
How to automate your shipping process
Logistics automation has been a hot topic in recent years. Many experts predict it’s the wave of the future. According to McKinsey & Company, this automation starts at the warehouse level. A recent report on the matter stated, “Many operations could be automated by 2030, as artificial intelligence takes over the many repetitive activities that logistics companies perform. We expect to see fully automated high-rack warehouses, with autonomous vehicles navigating the aisles.” While the world of warehouse automation sounds like a science-fiction movie, automated shipping is far less cinematic, yet streamlines many repetitive warehouse activities.
Automated shipping aims to fulfil customer orders with the least manual tasks involved. Eliminating manual tasks increases efficiency, reduces labour costs, and often gets an order to a customer more quickly and accurately than ever before.
Step 1 – Optimise fulfilment
Before you ask yourself how to automate your shipping, you should first ask how to automate your fulfilment. When brands automate their fulfilment process, order fulfilment can begin as soon as an order is placed, without manual intervention. Shippit offers streamlined order fulfilment integrations that allow you to:
- Sync, manage, and book orders fast
- Streamline, pick, and pack workflows
- Automate manual courier decisions for consistent, fast, and error-free shipping
- Take advantage of one-click printing, picklists, and pack slips to help your teams fulfil orders fast
- Automatically allocate the best packaging type
Savvy sock brand, Odd Pears, halved their order fulfilment time using Shippit. The founder said, “With Shippit, we’ve been able to halve our picking and packing time. The Shopify integration was set up within 10 minutes, and once we ordered, synced and connected our courier accounts, I was able to start shipping right away.”
Step 2 – Optimise your carrier mix
The next step to automating your shipping process is to optimise your carrier mix. Using the same carrier for all of your shipments isn’t efficient anymore. Today, it’s better to use a variety of carriers. Using Shippit, businesses can compare each carrier by average speed, on-time delivery rate, shipping cost, and order volume. You can also look at carrier performance over the last 30 days to further optimise your mix.
Shippit’s shipping optimiser gives you simple to understand insights with the ability to filter your domestic and international deliveries by standard, express, priority, and on-demand deliveries. Using your historical delivery data, the shipping optimiser generates a recommended carrier mix for domestic standard deliveries that you can instantly apply.
Merchandise company, Merchgirls, reduced shipping costs by 25% with smart carrier allocation. Shippit’s community of merchants and partnerships with Australia’s best carriers, Merchgirls gained access to exclusive and competitive shipping rates across standard, express, same day, and on-demand delivery.
Step 3 – Automate your tracking
The Academy Brand, a lifestyle and apparel company, found itself with a mountain of customer complaints due to inconsistent and unreliable tracking information. The company found it challenging to locate tracking statuses across different couriers. By the time they located the data, it was no longer current. By automating their tracking with the Shippit platform, they remedied the entire situation. The company experienced a 90% reduction in time spent handling inbound queries and complaints due to shipping.
Brands can easily see tracking information through Shippit’s Delivery Dashboard, giving them all the data they need to make informed decisions on shipping costs, transit times, and carrier performance.
Shippit Tracking Automation includes:
- One place to track all orders
- Simple tracking notifications with five easy-to-understand statuses to keep businesses and customers on the same page
- Data-driven delivery estimates
- Dynamically updated delivery estimates, backed by the latest delivery data from across our platform
How automating your shipping boosts customer experience
In the competitive world of e-commerce, customer experience is king. One of the most critical elements of customer experience when online shopping is receiving the correct order on time. 46% of consumers ranked reliability as one of the top attributes they look for when choosing a brand or retailer to purchase from. It only takes one bad e-commerce experience for a customer to move on to a competitor that delivers on time.
The focus of any shipping automation system is to make it easier and cheaper for companies to process and ship orders to their customers. The easier it is for them to push orders out, the happier their customers will be. The ideal shipping automation system enables brands to be more accurate, avoid missed deliveries, and an onslaught of customers saying, “Where’s my package?”
While manual shipping makes sense for businesses that are just starting out, automated shipping is critical for brands that wish to scale. Automated shipping can help growing brands improve the accuracy, transparency, and timeliness of their deliveries while minimising manual tasks on the back end.
By optimising fulfilment, companies can increase their picking and packing speed. With the right carrier mix, businesses can save money and improve delivery speeds while fine-tuning their selections over time. With tracking automation, brands can provide real-time delivery data to their customers. Overall, these improvements keep customers happy with deliveries they can rely on.
Automation-powered logistics management tools can boost customer satisfaction by 64%.
Make better carrier decisions with the shipping optimiser.