Logistics tips for Christmas

  • Do not let the management of your eCommerce deliveries be your Achilles' heel. We bring you some tips on logistics for Christmas that will help you a lot.

  • Those of us who have been managing online stores for some time now know that November is when madness starts. That is why it is worth anticipating what we already know is going to happen.

    We are starting right now with Singles Day (it is stronger every year). Then comes Black Friday, Cyber Monday... But deep down, these are just the first stages to be covered before reaching the key moment from a commercial and logistical point of view: Christmas.
  • Logistics challenges for Christmas

  • Getting the whole process and the means to make our products reach customers in this key time is essential. That said, we know that there are a number of challenges that need to be dealt with in order to do so. 

    These challanges are basically the same during Christmas campaign - dealing with external suppliers, responding to expectations, being efficient... - but with a critical modifier. 

    At Christmas everything has a deadline, and this means that the logistics process has to be particularly effective. Delays are simply unbearable, because they will spoil user experience and burden us with returns and trigger reverse logistics. 

    Add to this the fact that the volume of orders is growing exponentially; and, to complicate matters even more, our customers send to unusual destinations and, in many cases, the recipient does not even expect it.

    Did you already stress while reading this? Do not worry, we are already going over those logistics tips for Christmas and you will see how the matter can be smoothed over.
  • Logistics tips for Christmas

  • Let´s go straight to the most useful recommendations, small adjustments that you can make easily and that substantially change the experience, improve the efficiency of eCommerce, increase profitability, stimulate recurrence and, almost the most important: make everything more relaxing.
  • #1 – Audit processes

  • Don't athletes time themselves when training? Well, this is the same. 

    You simply have to know how many steps and how long it takes from the time the order is received at the store, processed in the warehouse, picked and the truck leaves for its destination. 

    The first thing you will see thanks to this analysis is if all the steps are strictly necessary. Get rid of anything that only adds complexity to logistics.

    And when I say timing, I mean it literally. Saving 30 seconds does not seem to be very substantial, but if you multiply it by all the orders you are going to manage over Christmas, you are going to see the true dimension of optimization.
  • #2 –Buy packaging stuff now

  • One of the biggest advantages of packaging is that it does not expire just like that. Therefore, it is worth making an upward calculation of the packaging material for your eCommerce needed.
  • Running out of resources to send packages at a critical time can be a bit of a tragedy. It would mean throwing away all the previous study, bad shopping experience and stress... especially a lot of avoidable stress.

    By the way, it would be a good time to invest in a proper printer, because you are going to need to print a lot of labels. When we were talking about saving time, we were also talking about these little things. Because a thermal printer works very fast compared to an inkjet printer, and consumables are cheaper than those of a laser (hello thermal paper, goodbye ink and toner).

    Do not forget something very important at Christmas either: gift paper. If you give this option and service (something highly valued by users), you will also have to have enough material. In this sense, and depending on your products, better bags than complex packages to gain in handling time.
  • #3 – Watch out for delivery deadlines

  • We have already mentioned this: here the dates are critical, and not complying with them is even more problematic than in any other period.

    Talk to your logistics provider to find out exactly what the average delivery times are and the minimum periods to do so with guarantees. Do not trust the ones you are handling right now, because Christmas campaign is a seasonally exceptional situation for you and all your competitors. 

    It would not  hurt to take a look at the Christmas calendar for eCommerce, which does not all come down to Black Friday and December 24th.
  • #4 – Convert shipping costs into marketing

  • This is a basic in eCommerce Christmas logistics. You can develop many different tactics to play with the shipping costs:

    • Free from a specific minimum cost
    • Included in the final price
    • By expense range
    • Cheaper shipping for customers who order in time
    • Free store pickup
    A real boom in online sales is expected this year. The inertia generated by the COVID pandemic, together with the uncertainty and the need to respect social distance, will definitely contribute to users' preference for e-commerce.
  • In this competitive environment it will be necessary to find any advantage. Shipping costs represent that margin that we can play with. In addition, customers who are not used to buying online often do not feel comfortable having to pay for them (they have a hard time assuming them).
  • Do you have your logistics ready for Christmas? Do you want more advice? Then, stay tuned!

  • Images | Unsplash.

Laia Ordoñez

Laia Ordóñez is a copywriting & eCommerce content marketing expert. She is Content & Marketing Manager at DueHome, a copywriting & content independent advisor, and Oleoshop's blog's editor-in-chief.

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