In the current pandemic times, many consumers have switched from visiting brick-and-mortar grocery stores to purchasing groceries online to ensure their health and safety.
As a result, many grocery retailers, including hyperlocal grocery delivery services, have seen a surge in demand for grocery deliveries. Let us understand what hyperlocal delivery means and its importance in these pandemic times.
What is Hyperlocal Delivery?
Hyperlocal delivery is the process of delivering products directly from a seller to the customer.
The operation involves a courier agent picking up products from a seller and then delivering them directly to the customer’s address. Now, hyperlocal deliveries are being increasingly preferred by brands due to the convenience and functionality they offer.
That is because hyperlocal delivery players offer payment as well as last-mile delivery expertise to the local Kirana stores and other neighborhood stores. The key characteristics of a hyperlocal delivery are as follows:
- Product Procurement: In hyperlocal deliveries, the seller or the local delivery service provider procures products ordered by the customer locally and delivers them within the same geographical area.
- Delivery Area: Hyperlocal deliveries are carried out in a small geographical area, mostly within a 5-15 km radius. Sometimes, deliveries are done intra-city, where the distance is more than 20 km.
- Time Taken for Delivery: In hyperlocal delivery, goods are delivered usually within a few hours. The courier agents aim to deliver the products in about 2 to 3 hours or a maximum of 6 to 8 hours. Since the geographical perimeter is small, deliveries do not take very long.
- Type of Products Delivered: Since hyperlocal deliveries are carried out in a small area with less delivery time, usually essential items, such as groceries, medicines, and food items are delivered.
- Delivery Package Weight and Volume Limitations: For hyperlocal deliveries, there is usually a limit of 10 to 12 kgs on the weight of the delivery package. Since the delivery agents have to carry the packages on their two-wheelers, three-wheelers, or four-wheelers, they have to be careful about the package weight. If the weight exceeds the stipulated limit, extra charges are levied to the customer.
- Delivery Responsibility: In hyperlocal delivery, the responsibility of delivering goods to the customers lies solely with the seller. Deliveries are carried out either by the seller’s fleet or the delivery company employed by him. Through experienced delivery partners, sellers can provide quick deliveries at a reduced cost. That becomes highly beneficial when sellers are trying to meet the escalating demand during the ongoing pandemic.
- Delivery Mechanism: Hyperlocal deliveries are not possible without a robust last-mile delivery network. Hence, hyperlocal delivery can be considered as a micro-arm and a subset of last-mile delivery.
- Direct Connection Between Sellers and Local Customers: Often, small local sellers, especially those catering to various geographies within a city, don’t have the necessary infrastructure to connect directly with their customers through digital platforms. In the hyperlocal delivery model, local offline businesses connect to the end customer through an online platform providing the ideal blend of online comfort and physical re-assurance. Since hyperlocal delivery services serve customers within set geographies and short distances, they help sellers connect directly with all their existing and potential customers within that region, enabling super-fast deliveries.
How are Hyperlocal Deliveries Important in Today’s Pandemic Times?
- In the present scenario, when several lockdowns and social distancing norms have been implemented across the country, people are not allowed to step out of their homes. This restriction has forced people to remain indoors. So, both the consumers and business owners have no other option but to resort to delivery services. That is where hyperlocal deliveries have a critical role to play.
- Only essential items like food, groceries, medicines, medical equipment, hygiene products, etc., are being made available to customers, which they usually buy from nearby shops. But during lockdowns, since nobody is allowed to visit shops to purchase their weekly groceries or other essential items, hyperlocal delivery has become a game-changer. Sellers can provide hyperlocal delivery to make essential goods available to customers at their doorstep.
- Today, some of the top companies like Amazon have started hyperlocal delivery of essential items across the country to serve the most urgent needs of their customers. They have temporarily prioritized their available order fulfillment and logistics capacity to deliver high-priority products to their customers as quickly as possible.
- In the current pandemic times, while the common man faces severe challenges, businesses have also been hit hard by the pandemic. Now, as the lockdown regulations ease and the markets gradually reopen, business establishments are racing to compensate for the downturn. They are now leveraging hyperlocal deliveries to stay afloat in the market during the COVID-19 era.
- The hyperlocal delivery model has helped the logistics industry to optimize time, cost, and resources. It has resulted in fewer delivery resources required since time gets saved on short distances traveled, and sellers can cater to more customers. Moreover, with aggregators offering nominal prices based on shipment weight, small sellers need not invest enormous amounts of money on shipping.
To summarize, hyperlocal deliveries have become a win-win solution for small sellers and aggregators alike. While the pandemic may be temporary, hyperlocal delivery services may stay here for a long time.
In pandemic times, route planning and last-mile delivery optimization are of utmost importance to ensure smooth operations. Live tracking of field personnel and courier agents will help ensure the swift delivery of goods so that customers receive their orders on time.
Whether you are an e-commerce seller or a local delivery service, efficient fleet management last-mile delivery optimization can help you make quick hyperlocal deliveries. So, are you ready to take advantage of last mile delivery software to optimize your hyperlocal deliveries?