As customer demand for same-day delivery grows, many retailers are turning to crowdsourced fulfillment to speed up their final mile delivery. But that doesn’t mean they have to treat every order like a one-off. After all, increased traffic in and out of the warehouse, poor route planning and high costs can make point-to-point delivery strategies almost impossible to scale as demand grows.   

With Roadie’s batched and routed delivery solutions, your company can be ready to deliver on-demand while benefiting from the ease and cost-savings that this ultra-efficient option for fulfillment provides.

But like any logistics process, quality control is key. And that includes how you prep and batch orders for delivery. Read on for six steps to take when setting up your batched and routed delivery operations to ensure you make the most of each route.

1. Regularly review pickup deadlines, delivery radius and other requirements.

Any organization that has multiple same-day deliveries headed in the same direction on any given day will benefit from batched and routed delivery. Batching orders going in the same direction with deadlines only a few hours apart can save your business time and money. By taking the time to review your delivery requirements and parameters — such as cutoff times, delivery radius, pick-up deadlines and SKU availability — on a regular basis you can make sure each route is optimized to be as cost- and time-efficient as possible. That way, you’re not running extra routes to fill orders that missed the pickup or sending drivers out on routes that overlap. 

2. Always check your stock first.

Avoid submitting deliveries for batching until you know the inventory is in stock and the order has been picked. You don’t want to go through the motions of arranging for pickup only to learn that the products ordered are out of stock. It’s not only bad for your company and drivers, but it also disappoints your customers. 

3. Sort orders before the crowdsourced driver arrives.

Once Roadie batches the orders, your warehouse crew can sort the packages for pickup. By scheduling orders for delivery in advance, your warehouse team will know when to expect drivers. That way, they’ll be ready to help the drivers load up and get back on the road quickly. 

Roadie’s new SmartSort app will help you do this quickly. For example, if you’re uploading 80 deliveries for the next day, our app makes it easy for warehouse employees to sort those orders into batches. Roadie’s algorithm builds the routes and SmartSort tells the employees which orders belong to which batch. Instead of drivers showing up and combing through staged orders to find the right ones for their route, they can go straight to Bucket A to find their orders pre-sorted for pickup.   

4. Establish a well-marked, accessible staging area for orders.

When setting up to send out your first batched and routed order, make sure employees are sorting the packages and staging them where drivers can easily find them. Your warehouse may be well-organized, but it also needs to be accessible for crowdsourced drivers, who may be new to your facility and who don’t use traditional loading docks.  

5. Set clustered pickup times.

This may not always be realistic, but consolidating works well for warehouses and retailers that receive a high volume of orders overnight. Simply upload the data to Roadie’s platform the night before and know all your same-day deliveries will be logically grouped and picked up and delivered the following day. The Roadie algorithm can consolidate all pickups for a set time the next morning — meaning your team can spend less time waiting for drivers and more time doing the tasks they were trained for. 

6. Use barcoding on packages.

This quality control step ensures drivers always pick up the right packages for the batch they are assigned to deliver, and it also makes order sortation easier for your team. Roadie drivers use the app on their phones to scan the orders at pickup. Barcodes are especially important when the crowdsourced drivers are picking up multiple packages all assigned to the same route. 

Checking all of the boxes for batched and routed success

For any company sending out multiple same-day deliveries each day, batched and routed fulfillment can be a time-saving and cost-effective alternative to individual shipments. It also helps you maintain high standards for fast, on-time delivery with each order. That means your team can spend less time coordinating pickups and more time on important projects. 

By taking these six steps, you can get the most out of your batched and routed deliveries, streamline your same-day and next-day fulfillment, and keep your customers happy. 

Want to learn more? Download our white paper to discover how Roadie’s batch and routed delivery can improve, optimize and simplify your last-mile logistics.

Using routes and crowdsourcing to optimize last-mile logistics