Customers are the most significant assets to any business; it’s in your best interest to meet your customer’s every need to the best of your abilities. And what do customers want most of all? They want their products delivered on time whenever they make an order. Statistics show more than 13% of customers will never order from a store that has late delivery.
But what will you do when the inevitable happens? To ensure you don’t chase your customers away due to late deliveries, here are simple ways to handle late delivery and make your customers happy. Remember, a happy customer is a happy business.
What Are Late Deliveries?
Late deliveries are orders which have failed to reach the customers within a promised timeframe. Late deliveries reflect poorly on a business, but retailers still commonly encounter them. If your product doesn’t arrive on time, customers are less likely to make another purchase in your store, potentially leaving a bad review for your service, or claim costly compensation.
How To Respond To Customers About Late Deliveries?
If you have ever been on the receiving end of a late delivery, you will know how frustrating it can be to wait in perpetuity for your products to arrive. So, stores that know precisely what to do when missing delivery dates will stand out among the rest. Here are some key factors to keep in mind when responding to a customer about late deliveries.
Communicate with Customers
Nearly half of eCommerce buyers recognize that their preferred delivery option might not be readily available upon purchase. Late deliveries are unavoidable, transparent customer communication can improve your customer relationship. If you know a delivery will be late for any reason, give your customers the exact details for that particular order. Approach your operations from a customer-focused perspective; it will help you retain customers peradventure you have shipping malfunctions or late deliveries.
A great way to effectively communicate why customers will receive a product later than usual is with BackOrders. BackOrder allows customers to see that your store is shipping a product at a later date due to pending restocks. So, when a customer orders through BackOrder, they will explicitly know a late delivery is coming, without assuming the worst of your store.
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Provide offers and discounts
Customers usually complain privately or publicly when they experience a bad delivery. Negative comments can be bad and good on social media since you can respond to these comments. It allows you to win back your loyal customers while visitors can read through reviews and comments.
You can offer gifts, shipping refunds, or a credit when the fault is totally from your bran in dealing with a late delivery. With these little gestures, you can retain your customers before they think of ditching you for your competitors.
How can I improve my delivery time?
Each product has a unique delivery expectation based on dimension, location, and stock levels. If your store encounters late deliveries on a regular basis, check your order management process for any miscalculations for the above quantities.
For example, your product is frequently shipped to various locations nationwide. However, your website only shows a fixed delivery expectation. Without a dynamic way to indicate the effects of distance on delivery time, every order that exceeds your hometown will likely be late or fail to meet expectations.
Another example is when stores fail to track inventory, leading to customers buying out-of-stock products accurately. Stores that don’t account for zero-stock items will need to add additional time for restocking AFTER the customers have already placed an order.
Specify shipment tracking
Avoid putting your company in a place where your customers know you for late deliveries. It doesn’t spell well for your brand because you will outstretch your shipping resources to meet demands. To avoid such cases, specify shipment tracking. Ensure to deliver at the stipulated time even if you have to provide quicker than your competitors.
Delivery of product quicker than expected can be an attractive quality your customers will appreciate. When shipping items, be honest about how fast you can deliver them. You can damage your relationship if you can’t meet up with the deliveries.
Supplier relationship management
At times, most delays result from suppliers’ inability to deliver the goods to your store at the stipulated time. To avoid such delays, you can have multiple suppliers to provide these products. Furthermore, you need to build a solid supplier relationship that allows you to manage when and how these items can be delivered on time.
Handling Late Deliveries With BackOrder
Knowing that the main factors for late deliveries are: item size, shipping location, and inventory management, the best solution to dealing with this common eCommerce problem is effective customer communication and supply management. One simple solution that helps instantly improve both of these aspects is implementing BackOrder.
This award-winning BigCommerce inventory management app will let retailers control how they want to handle zero-stock inventory. BackOrder lets store owners input expected delivery time for out-of-stock products, making purchases more transparent for customers. The app will also let you manage stock-out products, which in turn help you improve restock time and resolve supplier issues.