3 Ways A Real-Time Visibility Provider Transforms E-commerce Supply Chains

In 2022, experts estimated that the U.S. e-commerce market was worth $905 billion. This means that a significant number of people are purchasing this way. Therefore, it's important to pay attention to how the demands of this growing population of consumers are changing. One expectation is that 62% expect to receive their free shipping orders within three days. At the same time, 69% express having at least some worry about the risk of package theft.

Package tracking with real-time visibility provides a solution that addresses modern eCommerce consumer expectations and concerns. In the survey of people concerned about package theft, 43% gave package-tracking technology as the most important feature. Of course, this technology helps consumers have a clearer idea of estimated arrival and when a package is delivered, helping cut down on theft. It also provides updates to consumers who are expecting their packages quickly.

As consumer demand for fast, secure shipping increases, many shippers are turning to real-time visibility in logistics as a means of improving efficiency throughout operations while meeting customer demand. This article explores three ways real-time visibility optimizes shipping. We take a look at real-time parcel tracking, actionable analytics, and streamlined freight auditing.

3 Ways Real-Time Visibility Can Transform Your eCommerce Supply Chain

Gaining visibility in real-time during the shipping process provides immense benefits that help eCommerce shippers better manage their shipping operations. In particular, gaining a clearer picture of what is happening with shipments and when improves the supply chain and logistics in these three ways:

1. By Using Transportation Visibility Platforms to Give Shippers the Analytics Advantage

Analytics is revolutionizing the shipping industry, allowing shippers to increase operational efficiency and decrease costs. Improved analytics enables shippers to gain greater insight into their operations, with increased visibility into:

  • Inbound and outbound shipments
  • Inventory levels
  • Financial transactions

This improved visibility enables them to make more informed decisions and better anticipate costs, delays, and other potential issues. In addition, shippers can use analytics to identify and utilize the optimal shipping route, utilizing insights on past operations to optimize future performance.

By utilizing a real-time visibility platform to transform raw data into actionable analytics, shippers can make smarter decisions that reduce risk, optimize route selection, and improve overall efficiency.

Analytics help eCommerce shippers learn from the data associated with their processes. The supply chain and logistics naturally include useful data from a variety of systems, vendors, and shipping receipts. The more shippers rely on technology, the more they can:

  • Keep up with massive amounts of data (big data)
  • Integrate the data to gain a broader picture
  • Have access to useful data in real-time, such as the volume of items sold and returns

Not all data comes from real-time tracking, as shippers can find useful information from a variety of sources, including shipping receipts and logistics systems. Nonetheless, bringing together a variety of data and analyzing it properly enables shippers to make better decisions in real-time. They have all the information they need in front of them, with the support of technology to alert the shipper to discrepancies in the data.

Nonetheless, collecting data isn’t enough. It needs to be normalized, combined, and analyzed properly to make the data useful for insights. Big data analytics and machine learning technologies make large datasets more useful and help shippers gain better real-time information. This technology and the right service provider help analyze the data and glean actionable insights from it.

2. By Optimizing Outdated Freight Auditing Processes With Cutting-Edge Transportation Visibility

Transportation visibility platforms are also revolutionizing the freight claims process for shippers. Previously, freight claims processes relied primarily on manual technologies like email, phone, and fax. These methods are no longer efficient.

By integrating freight claims management processes into real-time transportation visibility platforms, shippers gain the power to forgo time-consuming manual processes in favor of paperless freight claims. This is just one of the ways it is helpful for shippers to integrate different systems and sources of data, providing a more complete picture and giving shippers more information at their fingertips whenever they need it.

Two benefits especially help shippers in this area.

  1. Automation tools allow for the efficient filing and resolution of claims, enabling shippers to recover their losses quickly and easily.
  2. Integrated freight claims dashboards provide a bird’s eye view of complex freight claims operations.

By simplifying the claims process, transportation visibility platforms streamline outdated methods and allow shippers to get goods to their destination on time and without costly delays. In addition, integration in this area brings freight claims data together with other sources of data that can be used together within analytics and timely decision-making. Shippers can gain insights from freight auditing that allows them to optimize their shipping processes through decisions that are backed by data.

Further, using technology for freight auditing allows eCommerce shippers to know when there are problems with the associated information right away. This allows them to respond quickly and address the issues before they grow. The more a company uses outdated methods to carry out freight claims, the more it will miss problems and insights, and it will be slow to learn from the data and respond to issues. Optimized processes integrated with transportation visibility platforms bring everything into real-time.

3. By Using Real-Time Visibility to Accurately Track Shipments

Real-time shipment tracking is a key tool for shippers looking to improve their operations. Tracking technology gives shippers up-to-the-minute visibility into the status of their shipments.

This information helps them provide accurate ETAs to their customers, who are largely expecting this kind of information—as we saw in the intro, 43% of online shoppers gave tracking as the top feature they’re looking for. Back to the issue of package theft, customers can check tracking information to see that their package is expected on a certain date within a certain window of time, which helps them check for that package rather than leaving it sitting in front of their homes. Shippers can also provide information on when the package is delivered, so customers know the package is there.

Improved visibility into package movement can help shippers in three key ways:

  1. Reduce delays and expedite the delivery process
  2. Help shippers identify and optimize the most efficient route for their shipments
  3. Give shippers access to the latest information on shipment status and help them proactively, rather than reactively, manage their supply chain

This list highlights how the benefits of improved visibility go beyond alerting customers to the timelines of their packages. It also supports eCommerce shippers to improve their entire operations. Shippers are able to stay on top of packages throughout all stages of the process, from pickup to delivery. They gain data on problem areas, which shows them areas for improvement to streamline the process in the future. For instance, real-time visibility in logistics may show lags during final-mile delivery, in which case the shipper might consider working with different parties for that leg of the journey.

Real-time tracking shows shippers when shipping exceptions are occurring. For example, a shipment may be delayed due to unavoidable weather in a certain part of the nation. Having this information in real-time gives shippers a better understanding of what is happening with their packages and why. They can carry out more streamlined exception management in response.

Real-time shipment tracking is an invaluable tool to help shippers improve their operations and keep their customers satisfied. Overall, it allows shippers to cut costs, improve the odds of on-time delivery, and improve collaboration with third-party providers. Shippers and customers alike benefit from tracking technologies and real-time visibility in logistics.

To Meet Booming eCommerce Demand, Shippers Choose Real-Time Visibility With Intelligent Audit

The global eCommerce logistics market is set to reach $1 trillion by 2028. Faced with booming eCommerce demand, shippers are turning to innovative solutions to provide customers with the fast delivery and tracking they expect. Through a partnership with Intelligent Audit, shippers can access:

  • Transportation Visibility to meet rising demand and satisfy customer expectations
  • Streamlined Analytics
  • Freight Auditing backed by decades of experience.

Create streamlined shipping operations and better customer satisfaction. Start a conversation with Intelligent Audit today.

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