Impact Publications : AirCargo-253
Page 22 • AirCArgo AsiA-PACifiC • FEBRUARY-MARCH 2018 ‘Fast reactions to marketplace and efficient returns processes are key to international success RETAILERS and etailers that ‘react fastest to the shift in consumer behaviour and meet customers’ expectations for speed of deliv- ery and returns’ earn the highest levels of customer loyalty and revenue growth, according to commercial director of Seko Om- ni-Channel Logistics Justin Irvine. Irvine said: “The world of e-com- merce is shifting in the way peo- ple buy goods and their expec- tations of how quickly they want their goods. This is not as scary or daunting as you might think, nor as costly. Express delivery to Asia Pacific, for example, is now cheap- er than express delivery to most of Europe.” He added: “UK and European retailers and etailer giants have led the way in on-line cross-bor- der trade and we are working with mid-size companies that have been quick to drive their own initiatives and value to global customers. This is particularly true of UK brands, which are some of the most sought-after in the international consumer market. UK retailers selling on line are al- ready seeing the financial benefits of selling outside of the UK/EU and they represent great business models for equally ambitious companies.” Currently, the UK is the third largest e-commerce market in the world, with 46 per cent of UK SMEs exporting and receiving rev- enue from overseas, and report- ing a revenue growth rate of 1.8 per cent versus just 1.2 per cent for domestic-only operations. However, nearly all cross-bor- der movements take place via airfreight and the lack of available aircraft capacity, combined with demand outstripping supply in a buoyant market, means standard offerings will become more ex- pensive, and the ability to provide a reasonable transit time at a rea- sonable cost will become more important in the short-to-medium term, Irvine believes. “Speed and service drive growth. It is already clear that con- sumers shop more and have high- er cart spends with companies that provide consistently higher service levels. And, quite often they are willing to pay to receive a better service once they have confidence in a retailer/etailer’s ability to deliver. UK retailers can now deliver to Asia and Australasia – c ollectively the largest eCom- merce growth market in the world – in 2-3 days for under GBP10.00 (A$17.70). Companies that deploy these increased service levels can expect to see their businesses grow 1.6 times faster.” Claire Muir, Seko’s commercial director – Fulfilment and Contract Logistics added: “Many compa- nies’ fulfilment strategies also need a fast, robust and cost-effi- cient returns process, because this is now a fundamental factor in consumer buying habits. “Research shows 67 per cent of shoppers check the returns page before making a purchase and 92 per cent will buy something again if returns are easy. Speed of returns and refunding custom- ers has become a real focus for businesses as it promotes strong loyalty and repeat buyers. With integrated returns providers now available to work with, companies can now refund customers from parcel drop-off/collection in 3-5 calendar days. This is the new norm – and it is driving the growth in online sales.” Seko offers companies looking to grow in the international mar- ket four key recommendations: - Define your customer engage- ment strategy based on what the local market expectation is, and exceed it. - Establish a base of proven suppliers that can demonstrate a track record. - Work with multiple partners. No single carrier is likely to be able to service your needs on all lanes for all service levels. - Ensure you immediately enable in-country processing in your top countries. - Wherever possible, ensure Express/Priority services are your standard offering, or at least free past a given dollar value. Justin irvine, commercial director of Seko omni-Channel Logistics.