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E-commerce has grown explosively in recent years. When the
coronavirus hit in 2020, online sales have reached an all-time high
across the globe. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, retail e-
commerce sales for the second quarter of 2020 increased by 44.5
percent from the same quarter in 2019.
This pace of growth has a significant impact on the trucking industry.
The logistics industry has to balance several demands from e-
commerce consumers, from fast delivery times to lower shipping
The “last mile” of delivery is the point where the package arrives at the
customer’s door. The final leg of shipment is often the most time-consuming
and expensive part because it involves multiple stops with small drop sizes.
In rural areas, delivery points on one route can be several miles apart, with
only one or two packages being dropped. This inefficiency results in higher
costs for the parcel carrier and longer waiting times for the customer.
In cities, on the other hand, traffic congestion causes shipment delays,
although the delivery stops are nearer. This problem leads to lower customer
satisfaction and higher operating expenses.
Some parcel carriers address the last-mile delivery problem through
crowdsourcing. By crowdsourcing their services, logistics partners can tap
non-professional carriers to make deliveries.
More and more consumers expect two-day or even same-day
deliveries from companies. Some expect this service for free, while
others are willing to pay a premium.
To meet this consumer demand, many companies are also developing
more fulfilment warehouses. The fulfilment centers are located in
strategic areas where the carrier can quickly reach customers.
However, having multiple warehouses impacts the company’s
inventory. They have to carry more inventory to achieve the same
service levels and ensure that products are always in stock.
These fulfilment warehouses are managed