“Chain of custody” isn’t exactly a term or series of systems that most people think and talk about every day. That is, until it becomes a problem or inconveniences people’s needs and desires – then it becomes a prevalent point of conversation, a day-ruiner, and can potentially lose you customers. Online orders and sales are booming – now more than ever with e-commerce amounting to 200 billion dollars in 2021 in the United States of America alone.
So much of our lives are highly politicized – this includes packages and deliveries, too. Our world continues to shift in response to the ongoing global pandemic. Heated debates over government agencies such as the United States Post Office unfold in newspaper headlines. Everyday people are suddenly paying very close attention to the safety and security of how deliverable goods arrive at their designated locations. If you are running a business in our current society, you know that understanding your customers is the only way to succeed.
So here’s why your customers care about the chain of custody, and why you need to as well:
People want to know that the items they order online for at-home delivery or BOPIS are secure. This is a multifaceted aspect and today we’ll look closely at two factors: porch theft and company accountability.
As online shopping has skyrocketed around the world, so has porch theft. The amount of stolen packages are astounding. Those organizations collecting data estimate that over half (59%) of people in the US receive “some type of package on a weekly basis”. In 2019, 36% of people reported a package stolen. By 2020, that number had jumped to 43% and most people report being a victim of porch pirates more than once.
With an accountable chain of custody for deliverable goods, customers can rely on estimated delivery times, opt into alternative or specific schedules, and make requests of delivery professionals. When customers trust the chain of custody, they are more likely to use the service and incorporate delivery and courier services into their daily habits and routines. With a thriving and dependable chain of custody, customers can count on your company to follow through on their purchases.
Accountability For Mistakes
Mistakes happen. We all know this, though certain customers will be more understanding than others.
In addition to securing reliable delivery to customers, with a well-documented chain of custody, customers can track, follow, and stay up-to-date on their delivery items. If things go wrong or mistakes are made, it is easier to retrace steps and solve problems efficiently. This is especially important for chains of custody that transport life-saving things like medical prescriptions and technology – but it doesn’t hurt when interacting with customers who have high expectations of communication and accountability. Chain of custody information is something you need as a business person but can provide relief for customers, too.
Ensuring the security of a deliverable item is key – but even more important than that is the emphasis on customer health and public safety. We are all still processing how the coronavirus pandemic changed (and continues to change) our world and the way people interact with businesses, health care, government, and even their own neighbors. Safety has always been a priority for people, though the stakes feel especially high at this moment.
In a properly functioning chain of custody, there are reduced flashpoints of contact as items are transported from one place to another. Customers care that the chain of custody minimizes that contact and lessens the risk of contagious viruses between people and goods. Chains of custody that include resources like smart lockers can speed up delivery processes while also assuring customers that their packages have been subjected to less exposure in the world.
Mitigate Other Health Risks
Contagious viruses aren’t the only risk to customers today – especially since most evidence suggests that covid pathogens aren’t transmitted via surfaces. But efficient chains of custody mitigate other health risks too. Other risks include spoilage and malicious individuals tampering with items in route. At a time when public trust is at a serious low point, an ideal chain of custody will emphasize and ensure both security and safety.
Efficient chains of custody also mean that consumers are able to receive goods in a timely way. And this, in addition to the reasons listed above, are why many customers care about the chain of custody.
As more of the global population incorporates technological advances into their everyday habits, people expect things to work smoothly and easily. While this isn’t always possible, it is what will keep customers happy and loyal to your business for years to come.