Deliveries: The importance of photos as proof of delivery

While home delivery has become much more popular recently, it also has its fair share of challenges for some companies. While home delivery is convenient for customers, it certainly isn’t as convenient for delivery companies.

From dispatching to last-mile delivery, companies have to take a number of steps to ensure the right order is delivered to the correct person safely and as quickly as possible. However, there may still be some hurdles during the delivery process, some of which have nothing to do with your staff’s skills.

Here are some home delivery challenges that companies face and an explanation of how photos and proof of delivery can reduce their impact.

#1 Packages left unattended at the door

Delivery drivers will often deliver a parcel when no one is home to receive it. Some drivers might leave the package at the customer’s doorstep, as attempting a second delivery means extra cost for the company. However, this involves the risk of package theft.

According to a survey by FedEx Canada, one out of three customers experienced package theft in 2020. In a recent survey we conducted, 58% of people said they were worried about package theft after ordering online.

How can you protect parcels?

To ensure that customers’ packages will not be stolen, delivery drivers might have to hide them intelligently so that they are not visible to passersby.

But how are your customers going to find them, you ask? Obviously, you don’t want them to go on a scavenger hunt, as they might not find that funny. Instead, many companies have chosen delivery software that offers a proof-of-delivery system using photos. So your delivery driver will need to find a good spot to hide the parcel and then take a picture that they will send to the customer to show them where it is.

This method can prevent package theft, and your customers will likely feel relieved to know that their parcel has been delivered and is safely hidden. Customers often experience pre-parcel anxiety when they order online, and they might be stressed out thinking their order will be delivered when they’re not home. Knowing their order is hidden will ease their anxiety, assuming that your driver did a good job.

It’s good for a driver to inform the dispatcher or manager of everything related to delivery. Has it been delivered? Where was the package left? Was there any damage caused to the product or the customer’s property?

This is also a way to protect your company from customer complaints. Not all customers have a good conscience, and some will try to get a discount by pretending your drivers never showed up. You will then be able to send them the photo of their door taken by your delivery driver with the time he sent it to you as proof that they attempted to deliver the parcel when the customers were not home.

#2 Missed deliveries

Some companies may decide not to leave the parcel at the doorstep if the customer is not home, either because it is too voluminous or pricey, or to avoid package theft in the first place. Thus, they will have to drop the parcel at the pickup point or attempt a second delivery.

However, neither of these options is usually preferred by customers, who may decide to complain and criticize your delivery service. For example, they may claim they were home and that no driver came during the delivery time slot. While this could be true, and your driver could have failed to deliver, some customers lie about this, and it might not be fair to argue with your drivers if they haven’t done anything wrong. Besides, it is very likely that customers will not appreciate it if you take your driver’s word over theirs without any proof.

How to prove delivery was attempted

To avoid picking one side, the best thing to do is get proof from your driver. This can be done with a photo of the customer's door that your driver will send in your communication channel to see when the driver was there. This will prove that your drivers are telling the truth and that they attempted delivery during the allotted time slot.

You will also be able to send this proof to customers to show them that your delivery drivers are reliable and protect your brand’s reputation. They will also be a lot less likely to leave a negative review after their missed delivery if they know they are responsible for not being there to get their parcel.

#3 Damaged items

Delivering items is not always an easy job, and incidents can happen. For example, a product might get damaged while on the truck and be shaken too much. In addition, heavy items might get damaged or scratched while drivers maneuver them in narrow spaces.

Drivers might also damage customers’ property while installing the product, especially furniture and appliance deliveries.

These incidents can’t always be avoided, but they can have a negative impact on customer satisfaction. In a recent survey, 58% of people said they were concerned that their package would be damaged when they ordered online, and 58.5% said it was the factor that would most likely prevent them from purchasing from a brand again.

Therefore, it is crucial to handle these incidents quickly and offer solutions to customers. This is why the company should be notified right away by the driver when a product has been damaged.

How to deal with damaged deliveries

Replacing damaged items is usually very costly for companies, as discussed in this blog. Therefore, you might want to try to make an arrangement with your customers. But in order to know if you can offer them compensation instead of replacing the item, you will need to be able to evaluate the damage caused.

With a delivery platform, your delivery driver will be able to take a photo of the damaged item directly from the app and send it to you right away to see what exactly happened.

You will receive a notification that an item has been damaged, and you will also be able to figure out a solution to fix the issue. For example, if the damage is minor, you might decide to offer compensation to the customer instead of replacing the item.

This could be the case for the back of a couch that has been scratched, but as it will be pulled against a wall, customers might agree to receive $200 in compensation instead of requesting a new couch since the damage won’t be visible.

Meet CIGO Tracker

CIGO Tracker is a best-in-class, cloud-based platform to increase deliveries, service calls, and pick-ups for your business. It scales as you need it and provides a state-of-the-art, “last mile” delivery experience that will thrill your customers.

Driven by innovation, an unwavering commitment to customer service, honesty, and trust, CIGO delivers the best, most flexible delivery tracking software in the industry.

At CIGO, we are always on the lookout for new features that we can add to our delivery software to improve your daily operations. If you would like to learn more about our delivery software, book a demo today.

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