Top 5 Delivery and Logistics Trends for 2023
As the e-commerce landscape continues to surge, driven by an increasing consumer appetite for swift, secure, and convenient online shopping experiences, the importance of solid partnerships between businesses and delivery and courier services cannot be overstated. The logistics and transport sector, specifically the parcel delivery segment, has experienced exponential growth, with recent global events amplifying the shift from in-store purchases to digital commerce. Consequently, staying ahead of the curve with the latest developments and innovations is essential to maintaining a competitive edge and delivering superior services that prioritize transparency, digitisation, and sustainability. In this article, we delve into the most influential delivery and logistics trends for 2023 that are poised to reshape the industry’s future.
Automation continues to be a major trend for 2023, with a growing number of companies investing in automation technologies to optimise processes and increase efficiency. This includes the use of robotics and automated systems in warehouse and distribution centers, as well as the use of autonomous delivery vehicles for transportation and last-mile delivery.
While robotics is not new to the logistics world, this is one trend Fastway have not invested in. However, investing in consumer-focused technologies; automated, flexible and scalable infrastructure is. This included the full automation of Fastway’s main sortation hub in Portarlington, Co. Laois in 2022. The automatic sortation system can now sort up to 150K parcels per shift, compared to the previous manual sortation system with a max sorting capacity of 80K a day. Further to this, Fastway’s new Head Office and Dublin Depot, in Greenogue Logistics Park, Rathcoole, will also become an automated facility allowing for best in class cut off times while ensuring full distribution coverage all over Ireland. Implementing automation technologies has the potential to create cost-efficiencies, operational efficiency, and enhance customer experience for Fastway.
Sustainability – Green Logistics
Sustainability continues to be at the forefront of businesses, and consumers alike. With growing concerns about climate change and environmental impact, everyone is looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and adopt more eco-friendly practices. This includes everything from using electric vehicles and alternative fuels to implementing more efficient supply chain management practices. This is especially important within the carbon heavy industry like logistics and transport industry, which contributes to approximately 24% of global CO2 emissions. And unless decisive action is taken, the European Environment Agency expects global logistics to account for up to 40% of global carbon emissions by 2050.
Fastway is an ambitious organisation united by an innate desire to join businesses in building a simpler sustainable future for everyone. We believe in leading from the front, and setting an example of how carbon heavy industries should behave to limit their effects on the environment… so we have started, and whilst we’ve a long way to go before we’re happy…. We’re committed to continuing these efforts from now on.
- Greener Vehicles – Fastway’s fleet of Gas Trucks and Electric Vehicles are powering our green fleet agenda and supporting our ambitions of reducing our C02 emissions.
- Efficient Route Optimisation Programme – Using state-of-the-art technology, Fastway utilises an efficient route optimisation programme for a more sustainable transport solution.
- Carbon Neutral Facilities – Fastway’s new Dublin Head Office and Greenogue Depot, which boasts Leed Silver green building accreditation, reflects our commitments to sustainability.
- Collapsible Vessels – By introducing re-useable collapsible vessels we’ve managed to reduce our haulage journey’s (instead of moving fixed boxes and cages) by over 14%!
- Label-less Returns – Introducing Label-Less returns to the Irish market, means a more efficient and sustainable returns process for both retailers and consumers, reducing waste and fostering more sustainable practices.
- Recyclable Packaging – As part of our Charity Partnership Programme with Run in the Dark, Fastway introduced co-branded 100% recyclable packaging.
The year is 2023, and it’s fair to say, due to events of the last few years, we’ve seen a seismic shift in consumer’s shopping habits, and in turn, delivery expectations! We’ve also seen a dramatic transformation in technology, which has completely revamped the way deliveries are handled – especially those ever-critical “last mile” deliveries. There has also been a change in the cost of last mile deliveries – which unfortunately has increased and now accounts for approximately 50% of overall transport costs. With the ever-increasing trend for free shipping, one-hour, same-day, and next-day deliveries, the burden of covering these costs now lies with the retailer and their delivery partner, if they want to stay competitive.
When it comes to last-mile delivery, this is where Fastway excels. Its entire business model is built around scalability, a franchised model adaptable to clients’ needs creating delivery efficiencies, a seamless technology stack that enables retailers to thrive, and AI-powered route optimisation to minimise delivery times, all of which are generating value for both businesses and consumers. Completing the delivery experience is Fastway’s parcel returns solution, Parcel Connect – Ireland’s largest PUDO and returns network. You could almost say, Fastway has earned the reputation of being the “white knight” of the booming e-commerce industry for last-mile deliveries.
A topic that is often overlooked, but I can assure you, as an avid online shopper, who returns way too many items, a consumer-friendly returns policy is critical to both the consumer and the retailer. As a consumer, returning an item can be a frustrating, and a time-consuming experience, especially when the process is unclear or there are unexpected fees involved. On the other hand, for businesses, managing returns can be a logistical nightmare, causing challenges for its inventory management system, resulting in revenue loss, and potentially a decrease in customer satisfaction.
However, returns management doesn’t have to be a negative experience for either party. In fact, when done correctly, it can be a valuable opportunity for businesses to build trust and loyalty with their customers. For customers, a seamless returns experience means they would be more likely to return to a business for future purchases, while for businesses, it can lead to increased customer loyalty and positive word-of-mouth recommendations. By offering a transparent and hassle-free returns process, businesses can show their customers that they care about their satisfaction and are willing to go the extra mile to make things right.
At the heart of a successful returns management strategy is a dedicated team that understands the importance of customer service. Whether it’s providing clear instructions on how to return an item, offering a variety of convenient return options, or promptly processing refunds or exchanges, a well-trained and responsive team can make all the difference.
For Fastway, through its Parcel Connect solution, Ireland’s largest Pick-Up & Drop-Off (PUDO) and Returns network, this is one trend Fastway has been pioneering. Co-founded by Danny Hughes, Group CEO of Fastway, Parcel Connect has quickly become a go-to solution for businesses, providing their customers with a seamless and efficient returns process. With Parcel Connect, businesses can offer their customers a convenient and flexible way to send, collect, and return goods to their local store, making the process hassle-free and improving customer experience. This has not only boosted customer satisfaction but also helped businesses to streamline their operations, reduce costs and improve their bottom line.
The increasing use of technology in the logistics and transport sector, specifically the parcel delivery segment, is another trend that will continue in 2023, as businesses recognise the potential benefits it can offer. Digitalisation involves the integration of advanced technologies into logistics operations, such as automation, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing. This trend is transforming traditional logistics processes by enabling real-time data exchange, streamlining operations, and reducing costs. Moreover, digitalization is helping logistics providers to meet the increasing demand for faster, more efficient, and transparent supply chains.
Fastway’s online shipping platform is one such solution that is transforming the way businesses ship their goods. This user-friendly platform simplifies the shipping process, saving businesses valuable time and money. Additionally, the platform provides real-time tracking of shipments, enabling businesses to keep their customers informed of their shipment’s progress. Fastway’s Parcel Connect service is another digital innovation that is empowering businesses to meet the evolving needs of their customers. Parcel Connect enables businesses to offer their customers a seamless and flexible delivery, click & collect, and returns process, which is made possible through the integration of digital technologies. Add to this, the technology behind Fastway’s Route Optimisation Programme, allowing for a more sustainable and efficient transport solution. By embracing digitalization, Fastway is helping businesses to optimise their logistics operations, reduce costs, and improve customer satisfaction.
The logistics and transport sector, specifically the parcel delivery segment, is undergoing significant changes as a result of technological advancements and increasing demand for sustainability. Automation is driving efficiency and reducing costs while sustainability is becoming increasingly important for businesses and consumers alike. Last-mile delivery remains a crucial aspect of the supply chain, with a growing emphasis on environmentally friendly options. Returns management is also becoming more critical as e-commerce continues to expand. Finally, digitalization is transforming the logistics industry, enabling real-time tracking and enhanced visibility across the supply chain.
Overall, the logistics industry is poised for continued growth and innovation as these trends continue to shape its future. By embracing these trends, companies like Fastway are leading the way in the logistics field. So, if you’re looking for a logistics partner that can keep pace with the latest digital trends and provide innovative solutions that will help grow your business, look no further than Fastway.