Supply Chain Issues: 3 Tips To Avoid Shipping Delays

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Shipping delays are an unavoidable part of e-commerce businesses. Someone might have slipped up while dealing with customs broker or import duty regulations, or inventory might have been inaccurately reported resulting in stock shortages and supply chain issues. 

Other reasons include unforeseen circumstances like weather conditions and holidays. This is exacerbated by global supply chain shortages resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Shipping delays can be a major headache for businesses. If your products get to your customers late, they may start looking elsewhere for what they need. This will be a problem for you.

While some things are out of your control, you are certainly in control of the way you respond to issues that arise. In this blog post, we'll discuss some tips for dealing with shipping delays along the supply chain and minimising the damage they can potentially cause to your business. 

1. Communication is key 

Firstly, communicate openly with your customers and be honest about the reason for the delay. Apologise if needed and give them a realistic idea of when they can expect to receive their package. 

Set up a dedicated customer service team to follow up on the delayed deliveries, whether by email, phone, or social media, as long as the response is quick and reliable. Ensure the customer knows that someone is taking responsibility and is handling it. 

Constantly update the customer on the shipment status and contact the customer before they have to contact you. 

2. Track shipments in real-time

Using a logistics partner like DHL Express that offers real-time shipment tracking is crucial. It will allow you to pre-emptively spot delays before they happen and respond accordingly.

For example, if you see an upcoming delay, you can immediately contact the customer and explain the situation instead of waiting for the customer to react to the delay. 

In addition, sharing the tracking number and allowing your customer to track their own shipments can help ease any fears and reduce their anxiety. 

DHL Express enables you and your end consumer to track all your shipments through the Track and Trace service. Simply key in the  unique 10-digit air waybill assigned to each shipment, and you’ll see the current location and time-stamp.

3. Offer perks and discounts 

To make up for the delay, you could offer your customer special deals, discounts, or free or discounted shipping off their next order.

It is not only a good opportunity to ensure a repeat visit, but also an effective way to build brand loyalty. With proper customer service, you can turn a customer’s bad experience into a good one.

A special deal, discount or free gift is a small price to pay to retain a happy customer and avoid bad reviews. 

How to prevent future shipping delays with a reliable logistics partner

Adherence to customs and regulations will help prevent unnecessary delays for the package to reach your customers. Hence, familiarising yourself with customs restrictions and import duty regulations which differs for different countries is crucial to ensure smooth shipping. While some delays are out of your control, selecting a good logistics partner is important to mitigate the issues which may result in delay. For example, DHL Express has a dedicated, in-house customs team all around the world who is well versed in local customs knowledge and expertise to minimise the risk of delays, as well as a 24/7 customer service live chat to provide you with support, should any issues arise. Reach 220 territories across the world with our same-day delivery services, such as DHL Jetline and DHL Secureline. DHL Jetline prioritises your shipment on the next flight out of the country and expedites it for the fastest possible shipping time. For high-value shipments, DHL Secureline ships your items with a dedicated charter service, offering top-notch security for your goods.