Small and medium enterprises are the backbone of any economy. And yet, many SMEs find themselves constrained. Though their sights are set on expansion, they are often held back by lack of access to capital financing and attracting the right talent, especially when they are located outside of major cities or away from tertiary educational institutions.
In this context, it is critical for small, medium and micro-sized businesses to uncover every new opportunity for growth and efficiency – and digitising delivery is one of the most important.
Agility & Scalability
Digitising delivery can reshape how SMEs operate; empowering the business to take back control and create an agile, scalable foundation for short- and long-term growth.
Take the example of a small florist whose flower orders fluctuate from day to day. Working with a traditional delivery company, they would need to commit to paying for a certain number of deliveries per period and adhere to a schedule drawn up by the logistics company. And if they wanted to add more deliveries to accommodate an unexpected last-minute customer, or reduce deliveries to save on costs when business is slow? Tough luck.
Previously, businesses facing the above dilemma had just one other choice – invest in their own delivery fleet and face the ongoing costs of vehicle maintenance, employing drivers and insurance.
The opportunity to manage deliveries via a digital platform such as web or mobile apps, however, flips this system on its head. It gives the power back to small business leaders, so they can be agile and instantly scale deliveries according to their exact needs. The business can quickly add in more delivery orders when business is booming, schedule deliveries in advance to help plan operations, and reduce service or eliminate it completely when deliveries are not needed.
Automation & Transparency
When deliveries are digitised, businesses can enjoy a new level of automation and transparency through real-time vehicle tracking, consolidated online records and hassle-free driver communications. This enables businesses of every size to take a more active and informed role in how their logistics processes are managed.
What can companies do differently with the power of automated and optimised last-mile delivery solutions? It depends. Some businesses may use this enhanced visibility to communicate up-to-the-minute delivery times to their own customers to improve consumer experience and loyalty. Others may get the most benefit from streamlining accounting processes to save time and build a more accurate view on where new efficiencies can be unlocked.
The Digital Shift: Fuelling Expansion Ambitions
Every business knows the importance of digital transformation, but this process is easier said than done – especially for small, medium and micro-sized companies without the resources or manpower to enact a major paper-to-digital shift. Digitising delivery through an app like Lalamove, for example, represents an opportunity to execute a technological transformation with zero added costs. In fact, a business will actually be increasing efficiency and cost control immediately, as they digitise communications, scheduling and accounting for delivery processes.
Making this digital shift in delivery is vital for small businesses especially those struggling to regain their footing in a post-COVID-19 world. Investors today are not only interested in groundbreaking products and ideas – they are looking for the next big idea that can be quickly scaled regionally or globally. A single-market strategy just isn’t enough, and any start-up seeking local and overseas investors will need to adopt its own global vision and demonstrate scalability. If delivery processes are stuck in the last decade, the business as a whole can’t move forward.