Furniture startup builds in-house delivery service
Digitally native furniture and home décor retailer Article is following the adage, “if you want something done right, do it yourself.”
Vancouver, Canada-based Article is introducing a new in-house delivery program known as Article Delivery Team (ADT) in the Los Angeles and New York markets. ADT handles the “final mile” of delivery, which brings items from a distribution center to the consumer.
Article launched ADT in response to the complexities of delivering large items such as furniture. By owning the last step of delivery, Article hopes to gain the ability to rapidly iterate and improve the delivery experience based on customer comments, while maintaining efficient transit times. This, in turn, should reduce negative feedback and escalations to customer support.
In areas where Article has piloted ADT, negative customer feedback has been reduced by up to 83%. Furthermore, Article was able to cut average delivery time by two days compared to outsourced delivery partners. Following the launch, the company plans to introduce the program to additional major North American cities over 18 months.
ADT teams are staffed by uniformed, Article-trained delivery personnel employed on a full-time basis. Supported directly by Article's customer service teams, ADT personnel are authorized to solve customer issues on the spot, like rescheduling delivery appointments or shipping alternate product sizes or colors.
"Since inception, we've worked with carefully selected local delivery partners who meet our high standards for service," said Article CEO Aamir Baig, CEO. "We've decided to take final-mile delivery to the next level with ADT. In-house delivery gives us a tighter feedback loop which helps us iterate on the process and create experiences people look forward to."
Retailers are starting to recognize the value of controlling their delivery experience all the way to the consumer. For example, Target is expanding its proprietary Shipt same-day delivery service, while Amazon keeps testing new in-house delivery solutions like its Scout robotic delivery assistant.