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HomeOPINIONNew Year, fresh start

New Year, fresh start

It’s a new year; time for ambitious resolutions, fresh starts, a healthy dose of navel gazing and some general life changes. But this chance for re-evaluation can apply to your business too, particularly as it continues to grow. One thing I believe can really help retailers flourish is working with the right courier partner.

Whether you’re taking on your first courier partner, changing providers or simply wanting to make better use of your existing partner, here are a few things to consider that’ll help make 2018 a successful year for your retail business.

Technology

Running a retail store is a more than a full time job! That’s why you need your back-end services to run as efficiently and seamlessly as possible. When it comes to courier companies, look at whether they offer a range of simple online tools that’ll make things super easy for you. Things like online ticketing systems, one-click booking services and the ability to order tickets and packs online can save you time, money and the hassle of a phone call.

Speed

A fast delivery service has become increasingly important to customers. In fact, these days, Kiwis see same or next day delivery within New Zealand as a given. Check the same-day capability of the courier provider – do they offer it and to where? Can they provide nationwide overnight delivery? What are their delivery standards? All of these things can make a huge difference to a customer who needs something ASAP.

Dedicated courier services

If you’re regularly sending items out to your stores from a distribution centre, or from one store to another, you may benefit from a dedicated courier service. Check whether the courier company can provide a regular service between your different locations, locally or nationally, as often as you like. It’ll save you time and money, as well as increase your efficiency and reliability.

International services

If you don’t already sell your products overseas, chances are this could be an opportunity in the near future. As the ecommerce wave becomes a tsunami, the distinction between local and international retailers is increasingly blurred. So, make sure you look for a courier company who delivers both nationally and internationally. It means you can get your items from A to B (wherever B may be!) using just one point of contact for the entire journey.

Local couriers, nationwide

When you’re not familiar with far-flung parts of the country, it can be reassuring to work with a courier provider who has branches nationwide. They’ll have locals on the ground who know the area and are far more likely to get your customer’s delivery into their hands on time, every time.

Great customer communication

Happy customers mean more repeat business, so make sure the courier company will provide clear tracking information for your purchasers. Ideally, an email should automatically be sent when an online order is despatched, containing a simple click-through from these emails to the courier website where your customer can track their item at any time. You’ll find yourself with less calls to deal with and much happier shoppers.

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So as 2018 kicks off, make it one of your resolutions to re-evaluate your courier provider. Working well with the right partner will not only see your business grow more smoothly, but help you deliver the very best service to your customers.

Scott Hedgman
New Zealand Couriers national sales manager sales.

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