Online shopping and food and grocery deliveries were on the rise during the pandemic.
However, some UK consumers say they will continue to use these services even after the restrictions are lifted. This means that the delivery business sector is still in high demand. Of course, it also means that competition will get fiercer since the market is currently shrinking and some players will be forced to re-orientate. One way to get ahead of the competition is to use a route planning app.
The trend is rather clear – delivery companies that manage to keep costs low and customer satisfaction high have the best chances of staying in the business. But how do you do that?
While the old-school methods do help (organization, good choices, and transparency), nowadays your delivery business also needs to up the ante in the tech field. And the best option is a route planning app.
What is a route planning app?
Put in plain terms, a route planning app is a navigation software optimized based on your specific needs as a delivery business. Its main purpose is to find the most efficient route weighing in factors such as:
- Traffic jams and rush hours
- The number of stops along the way (for delivery)
- Fuel consumption
- Maintenance and current state of the vehicles
- Driving patterns
- Type of terrain
Plus, you can use the app to provide customers with an accurate delivery window, which helps with the customer satisfaction factor.
How do these apps work?
If you’ve ever tried to handle multiple tasks at the same time, you know our brains aren’t designed for that. Brilliant as they are, our minds can focus on one task at a time and can’t make sense of huge amounts of data without prior processing.
That’s where route planning apps come into play. Software tools like the Circuit route planner app can easily take in and process huge amounts of data without losing accuracy or focus.
These apps can easily plan specific routes for each driver in your fleet by taking into account the factors mentioned above and more.
In a nutshell, the system takes orders for the day, runs them through a smart algorithm, and produces a comprehensive schedule for each vehicle. Plus, it can even follow the progress in real-time and adjust routes as needed.
Do I really need such an app?
If you spend hours bent over an Excel sheet while measuring distances on Google Maps, then yes, you need a route planning app!
In fact, manual route planning doesn’t make sense when you have access to some of the best apps. Plus, the ones created for small and medium-sized businesses are extremely affordable as your subscription cost depends on the number of vehicles you want to manage.
If you’re not yet convinced, here are some of the most common benefits that come with the right app:
- Savings – automating the route planning and scheduling processes can save somewhere between 10% and 30% in delivery transportation costs.
- Improved customer service – as your delivery ETAs become more accurate, customers will be happier with your service since they won’t have to spend an entire day waiting for a delivery. This is an extremely valuable point in favor of your business.
- Happier drivers – Your drivers are one of the most important business resources, and you have to pay attention to their needs. A route planning app can help them follow safer, less congested routes while also taking into account their driving style.
- Better vehicle maintenance – The app can also send reminders or schedule routine maintenance checkups for your vehicles, which, in the long term, saves money on emergency repairs and downtimes caused by unexpected malfunctions. Overall, it’s a way to improve fleet productivity and keep it running without a hitch.
Route planning apps use advanced devices, communication channels, and smart algorithms to automate the planning and scheduling parts of the delivery process.
And by using them, businesses can save on money, time, and resources while also increasing customer satisfaction. If you ask us, it’s a win-win situation.