Consistency is key to loyalty. See how we build operational resilience and strengthen customer relationships with robust, digitized fulfillment.
Brand loyalty is waning in today’s hyper-fast, e-commerce retail market. More than a quarter of UK and US adults claim not to hold any brand loyalty at all. Rather, consumers are more likely to base purchase decisions on delivery speed, cost, and customer service. Our research shows that 85% of consumers search elsewhere when delivery speeds are too slow.
In 2023, it couldn’t be easier for today’s demanding customers to shop with a different brand, so customer retention becomes a key challenge retail businesses must solve. Which they can. Efficient fulfillment operations, powered by AutoStore technology, can help businesses overcome these problems to maintain – and strengthen – brand loyalty.
While we can’t be certain how customer behavior will change in the future, it’s safe to say that reliability will always be paramount to customer retention. Customers want to trust you can deliver quickly, accurately, and conveniently, every time. That you can do what you say. Therefore, the risks associated with supply chain disruptions and any follow-on impact are huge.
So, let’s have a look at how your fulfillment operations can minimize risk to strengthen brand loyalty.
A delayed order, shipping the wrong size, an unacknowledged return; all these things risk losing a customer in today’s market, where switching between retailers can happen in seconds.
By incorporating reliable and robust automation and robotics into fulfillment, you reduce operational risk. You can ensure operations work smoothly, accurately, and efficiently, all day and night, while adjusting to weekly surges and seasonal changes without disruption.
It also allows you to scale quickly. This builds better experiences for more customers with less effort — better experiences that give consumers peace of mind to come back for more, turning your supply chain from an area of risk to a competitive advantage.
Using our automated fulfillment solutions, businesses like Swedish online pharmacy Apotea process orders faster and maintain 24/7 operations. CEO Pär Svärdson says the system “makes it easier for us to exceed our customers’ expectations.” Zeek Logistics is able to de-risk and fulfill its same-day delivery promise. Warehouse Manager, Jason Harber, says that using AutoStore systems “there's much less mechanical equipment needed to fulfill orders in the warehouse, which ultimately means less downtime.” And PUMA was able to speed up delivery from two weeks in peak time to one day while achieving 99.9% order accuracy.
Another way fulfillment can be used to de-risk operations is with its data. Combining fulfillment data — already digitized as it's generated by Robots— with commerce and customer data, you can get deeper analysis and insight. For example, connecting siloed data enables you to anticipate customer needs, forecast demand, and stress test current operations based on specific scenarios. And combined with manufacturing data further up the supply chain you can reduce overall lead times too. So, regardless of order surges, supply chain disruptions, or inventory issues, you can remain one step ahead to ensure continuous operations and reliable delivery. While other retailers are exposed to risk, you’re building reliability and trust for repeat business and a good reputation.
Word of mouth and reputation are paramount to customer loyalty, easily ruining reputations overnight. In this regard, in today’s eco-conscious world, sustainability efforts are crucial to upholding reputation. 87% of customers are inclined to buy from companies supporting causes they care about and 70% are willing to increase their spending on socially responsible brands.
Fulfillment technology provides ripe opportunities to use eco-friendly materials, minimize waste, and reduce carbon emissions, so businesses can earn loyalty from eco-conscious consumers. Norwegian wholesaler, Berggård Amundsen, runs its warehouse — which includes 11 AutoStore Robots picking from 17,000 Bins — exclusively on solar power from April to September.
Businesses that are ESG compliant not only minimize reputational risk but financial risk too. Fines and penalties for ESG infractions will be significant in the coming years.
Customer loyalty takes years to win and seconds to lose. With innovations in fulfillment, there are new opportunities to build resilience into your operations, to establish reliability as a brand feature, and strengthen customer relationships.
Winning customer loyalty in a hyper-competitive retail landscape has been identified as one of the 5 main challenges for global fulfillment in the next 5 years. To learn more, download our full report today: 5 Challenges for Global Fulfillment in the Next 5 Years.