What does agility mean for after-sales?

Today, after-sales is important even before a sale takes place. Customers are looking carefully at things like delivery options even before they click the ‘Buy’ button.

To meet rising customer expectations, you should offer visibility and flexibility. You need to be responsive. You need an agile supply chain.

How your business can benefit from agile after-sales 

After-sales is where relationships are built. Customers expect to be kept informed about delivery through email or SMS alerts, and they like to be given a say in when and where that delivery arrives. Good communication at this point is an opportunity to open a dialogue and encourage further orders.

Even if it’s a purchase that’s not likely to be repeated for some time, you need to think about follow-up support or returns. The more agile your supply chain, the better your after-sales service is likely to be.

Customers in all business sectors are looking for more value and research shows that this is a trend that can’t be ignored:

  • 78% of industrial manufacturers that provide field engineer support reported that after-sales service expectations are rising.

(Source: Industrial Machinery Manufacturing: Trends, Insights and Opportunities UPS 2015)

  • Only 41 % of online shoppers were satisfied with post-shipment flexibility.
  • 58% of customers felt free returns was key to satisfaction.

(Source: Rethinking Online Returns Executive Summary, UPS, 2015)

Companies that make the effort to reconfigure their supply chains to offer an improved after-sales service are reaping the rewards. It’s often a great after-sales experience that turns a casual shopper into a loyal customer.

How to set up an agile after-sales strategy

It’s important to partner with logistics experts who can identify your business challenges and understand your after-sales needs. At UPS, we like to get to know customers and work together to uncover opportunities for efficiency, and in turn profitability, hidden in the supply chain. We often find these by looking closely at how businesses handle reverse logistics.

Then when a change is implemented, conversation and close collaboration are key to ensure that you can continue to meet changing needs as your business grows, and that you continue to adapt at the right moment.

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Solutions to ensure agility in after-sales

We offer a variety of useful solutions that can be combined to boost the after-sales experience you offer your customers and that can be activated in combinations to solve the unique needs of various customers.

For example, if your customer would like to return an item to you, you can offer choice in how they do that. By offering flexible ways to deliver and accept returns, your customers will value the experience they get trading with you versus your competitor.

Including a return label in with your orders takes the hassle out of waiting for a collection. Thanks to our network of 14,000 UPS Access PointTM locations, your customer can manage returning items to you with ease.

Our solutions to make you more agile include:

A global integrated transport network:

  • UPS Standard Our economical delivery service is continuously becoming more efficient to speed up how you connect to your customers across Europe.
  • UPS Access PointTM A network of over 14,000 drop-off and collection point locations across Europe to facilitate exceptional after-sales programmes.
  • UPS Returns Can give your after-sales offering flexible options to impress your customers and win their repeat business.

Visibility and control technology:

  • UPS My Choice Alerts customers to incoming shipments and gives them control, allowing them to reschedule the delivery time and location.
  • UPS Quantum View Allows you to manage outbound and inbound shipments with ease, and provides delivery notifications.

Ecommerce brings global opportunities – and global competition. See how an agile supply chain enhances your chances of success.

Carrie Royle

Carrie Royle

Industry Marketing Manager, UPS

I am responsible for ensuring we offer our customers solutions that really make a difference for their business today and into the future. I'm passionate about staying on the pulse of global trade and the evolving opportunities for businesses of all sizes and sectors. Carrie Royle LinkedIn Profile

 

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