First Mile vs Last Mile Delivery

September 4, 2023
JJ Velaz
First Mile vs Last Mile Delivery

First-mile and last-mile delivery are two important components of the overall logistics and delivery process. Both have a significant impact on the speed and efficiency of the delivery, as well as the customer experience.

What is First-Mile Delivery?

First-mile delivery refers to the initial stage of the delivery process, starting from the time a package leaves the seller's facility and ends at the first distribution center. This stage focuses on efficient and cost-effective transportation of packages from the source to the first stop.

How does first-mile delivery work?

At the manufacturer's location, a courier service picks up orders and begins the first-mile delivery process. Following processing, the order(s) are forwarded to the following distribution location as soon as they leave the warehouse.

The seller's warehouse's exact pick-up location, the item's weight, size, and dimensions, as well as any other relevant information, must be disclosed to the courier service in advance.

What is Last-Mile Delivery?

Last-mile delivery, on the other hand, refers to the final stage of the delivery process, starting from the last distribution center and ending with the delivery of the package to the customer. This stage is critical as it has a direct impact on the customer's experience, and it requires efficient and reliable delivery services to ensure timely and accurate delivery.

How does first-mile delivery work?

When the ordered goods arrive at the closest distribution center, last-mile delivery starts. Once loaded, the carrier takes the box out of the center and delivers it to the drop-off destination that has been updated in the software and attached to the product. 

This procedure is complete after the delivery team gives the consumer their goods.

What to consider for Last Mile Delivery in Asia?

Last-mile delivery is very heavily affected by the geography of a specific city or country. For example, in Singapore, you can basically cover the whole country with last-mile delivery. While in Malaysia or the Philippines you need a deeper logistics network to cover the whole country.

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What are the main differences between First-Mile and Last-Mile?

  1. Cost:

 First-mile delivery is typically less expensive as it is done in bulk, with larger delivery trucks and more efficient transportation methods. 

Last-mile delivery generally is more expensive as it involves smaller delivery trucks, multiple stops, and delivery to individual customers.

  1. Speed

First-mile delivery is usually faster as it is done in bulk and involves fewer stops.

 Last-mile delivery is slower due to the individualized nature of the deliveries and the need to reach each customer's location.

  1. Customer Experience: 

Last-mile delivery has a more direct impact on the customer experience, as it is the final stage of the delivery process and customers expect accurate and timely delivery. 

First-mile delivery is less visible to the customer and typically has less impact on their overall experience.

  1. Complexity

Last-mile delivery is generally more complex due to the multiple stops, individualized delivery requirements, and the need for real-time tracking and delivery updates. 

First-mile delivery is typically less complex as it is done in bulk and has fewer stops.

Why First-Mile Delivery is important for your business in Asia?

Customers anticipate receiving their purchases in perfect condition more quickly. A little fault in the product's earliest phases of delivery might lower its quality and drive away buyers. First-mile delivery must be perfected in every way if it is to sustain quality delivery and retain and grow the client base.

Even though first- and last-mile deliveries are diametrically opposed in the supply chain, both play important roles in guaranteeing customer satisfaction. First-mile delivery effectiveness contributes to a superior last-mile delivery experience.

What are the First-Mile and Last-Mile Delivery Challenges?

  1. Finding the right delivery partner
  2. Managing inventory
  3. Meeting customer expectation
  4. Varying delivery times due to traffic or weather conditions
  5. Efficient processes, such as using a reliable delivery API such as Kosmo
  6. Tracking delivery progress, and giving customers accurate and up-to-date delivery information. 

If products are not delivered on time and in acceptable condition, the last stage of the delivery procedure might be the deciding factor. Due to its price and complexity, last mile delivery encounters certain challenges.

For example, businesses, especially those that serve the global market, must rely on outside services to deliver items amid unique seasonal shifts and peak times. Things like imprecise delivery addresses, backed-up traffic, and a lack of parking places can all cause delays.

According to Statista, a successful last-mile experience has its own set of difficulties and accounts for 53% of overall supply chain expenditures.

How Kosmo's same-day delivery services can help you?

Kosmo’s platform allows users to access a network of last-mile couriers. Kosmo allows businesses to deliver any sort of product to clients without the inconvenience of having to do each challenging integration individually.

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