3 Easy Steps to Same-Day Local Delivery in Collingwood and Blue Mountain

Have a small business in Collingwood or Blue Mountain? Here are three things to consider when starting or expanding your delivery service.

Over the past few years, offering delivery service has become integral to running a successful business. Shopping has evolved to the point where people can order almost any product online, and have it delivered within a day.

While delivery has always been part of the food industry, it's now also a vital part of retail. For many, it started with Amazon's two-day delivery, which is now next-day or even same-day in some areas.

Statistics show that as of 2020, Instacart, an American delivery company operating across North America, has grown to over 9.6 million users. Statista tells us that in 2022, over 2.14 billion people are shopping online. With 11% of the market share, Shopify is focused hard on helping merchants offer delivery.

But what about local shops and vendors, brick and mortar operations? Many well-established local businesses are choosing to use eCommerce platforms for online orders.

But is delivery really all that important, especially in a small community? After all, in a small town it doesn't take long for customers to run in and pick things up, does it?

That may be true, yet shopping trends in 2022 have changed, and the evidence suggests there's no going back. Shopify also found in a study that 53% of North American buyers expect to shop online going forward.

What does that mean for local businesses?

It means you're no longer competing on a local playing field only.

As of 2022, there are estimated to be between 12 and 24 million eCommerce retailers online, which means you may have some stiff competition. If a shopper is choosing between local and online shopping, convenience factors in. The idea of being able to order online and receive items the next day without going out is huge for busy consumers.

By the same token, local shops have a big opportunity. Offering same-day delivery gives your customers the best of both worlds.

Amy's Vacation: How Local Delivery Saved the Day

Amy Dent* loves going on vacation, but as a busy (and successful) graphic designer and mum to two kids under 5, she doesn't get to do it very often. So when she packed up last summer to head from her Ottawa home to the shores of Lake Huron for some R&R, she was well overdue for some fun in the sun.

It didn't go smoothly... at first.

"We got there and I realized we'd forgotten to bring an entire bag with us," she says, with a small laugh. "Like, the most important bag of all; the one with our toiletries, so toothbrushes, sunblock, shampoo and conditioner, but worst of all our vitamins and my husband's meds.

"I'm laughing now but at the time it felt like a disaster. We were exhausted from traveling and we didn't know the area. The last thing we wanted to do was go rooting around town with cranky kids for someplace to buy everything."

Amy mentioned the problem to a guest staying in the next cabin at the resort they were at, and she was pleasantly surprised. "She said there was a pharmacy in town that would actually deliver, which was great because we were a few minutes out of town. All I had to do was jump on their website, figure out what I needed and order. They brought it right to our cabin, it was such a relief."

We've all been there; no matter how well you plan your vacation, something gets left behind. For Amy, finding a local business that offered delivery made her vacation even better.

That's something she'll never forget.

"I have a lot of friends who vacation in the area," she says, "and now every time I hear about someone coming here, I tell them about that shop."

Offering Local Delivery: It's Easier Than You Think

So if local delivery is such a great thing, you may wonder: What's the catch?

If you're like many business owners, the first thing that comes to mind is the added complications. The hassle of taking orders, finding a shipping company, submitting the packages, and of course the tracking.

As a business owner you're already busy, so ... just how much time will this take? Too much to make it worth the effort?

The interesting thing about the evolution of delivery is that it's not only fast and easy for customers these days. As the demand has increased, so have the solutions.

So what are some things you should keep in mind if you're looking to start delivering or expand your current delivery service?

Here are the top three ways to keep it simple.

Set Cutoff Times on Same-Day Delivery

Rose Evans* owns a small gift shop in a small Ontario town that booms with tourism year round; for years, sales from vacationers were phenomenal. But that all changed when COVID hit, and she lost her customers overnight.

After a few weeks of panic (about both the pandemic and her business), she came up with a plan. Rose invested in a new website for her store and posted all her inventory online.

By the time restrictions started to open up she was done, and customers could buy her products online.

Along with her new online ordering, Rose implemented curb-side pickup for her local customers. As time went on, she began getting increased requests for delivery. At some point it was just more logical to deliver.

"One of the challenges we faced though was setting cutoff times," she says. "It all happened so fast, we were sort of flying by the seat of our pants, but that was an issue that came up right at the start. First, because without cutoff times people expected same-day even on evening orders. Then, once delivery got busy, it helped us stay organized to have a cutoff and ship things out all at the same time."

By setting clear cutoff times each day, you give your staff time to pack and organize your orders. And by staying organized, you ensure you can offer a better delivery service.

Keep Your Customers Informed

People love knowing they've got a package on the way; but accuracy matters. It matters so much that in a recent study, 24% of participants said they wouldn't buy without a firm delivery date.

With same-day delivery, it's easy.

Providing the order is in by the cutoff time, your customers know they'll get their order that day. If you're delivering out of town, or even out of province, it can be a bit trickier.

If you're using a software like EconoRoute™, informing your customers is simple. If you're not using a good delivery software, be sure to track your packages and let customers know.

Keeping people informed is vital to a successful delivery service.

Find a Great Delivery Software

As customer expectation around delivery has evolved, so has delivery software. Nowadays, the right software can make your delivery system run like a well-oiled machine. Gone are the days where you have to worry about hiring new drivers, coordinating delivery schedules, or dealing with clunky, complicated software.

At EconoRoute™, our delivery module has been evolving since 2015.

Our goal? To eliminate obstacles small business owners face in delivering to their customers. Our EconoRoute™ system provides you with everything from affordable drivers to reliable same-day delivery service.

All you have to do is enter your delivery orders into our easy-to-use EconoRoute™ platform, and click 'Send to Delivery'. We do the rest.

But wait, aren't same-day delivery services only available in bigger cities?

Not anymore.

With our EconoRoute™ Local Delivery Software, you can now offer same-day delivery in Collingwood and near Blue Mountain.

It's fast, affordable, and just so easy.

Want to know more about how you can offer same-day delivery to your customers in Collingwood and Blue Mountain? Sign up for the beta, or get in touch today! *Some names have been changed to protect privacy.