If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you’ll notice that we talk about Application Programming Interface (API) quite a lot. For those of us who work on a daily basis with APIs, we’re aware of why they are so important. Even if you’re not aware of it, you’re likely to be benefiting from APIs daily while using services such as Google Maps, Twitter and Facebook.
Explained simply, APIs allow and govern how one application speaks to another. They’re not at all new and expose the required extent of a program’s internal functions so that applications can share data.
In the digital marketing space, we talk a lot about user experience. When it comes to the key KPIs of your website, improving the online experience for your customers should be a priority. Freight and ecommerce websites go hand-in-hand. A great way to improve user experience is to allow your customers to track the shipping progress of their order once they’ve purchased a product. Doing so isn’t only better service, it also helps to build trust and arm your customer’s with peace of mind. And we all know that in the online world, trust is priceless!
In terms of your business and digital marketing, information delivery is key. When a customer buys from your website, they want to know the status of their order and when they are likely to receive their parcel. These days, freight times are getting shorter and shorter as waiting for a critical delivery can be costly. Not only for a business who is left to deal with inefficiencies such as chasing a transport company, internal delivery drivers, route diversions and so on. As for your customers, downtime in production or overtime in a warehouse can result in a critical cost impact. The higher these costs surge, the more likely they are to have a negative impact on your relationship with your supplier.
Most of us have used GPS tracking in some capacity for many years now. In the business world, the information provided by GPS tracking is often hidden from your customers. The development of APIs are game-changers in this space and are a crucial factor in how Woven’s Avenue assists in incorporating this information into your website. As always, there are some key factors involved to ensure this process works as intended. They include:
Fully scoping out the desired outcomes
A bespoke process is not ideal for any ecommerce website. From the beginning, you need to budget for the development of technology as well as the cost of incorporating other elements into your business such as Avenue.
Know your deliverables
You need to have a good grasp as to your freight providers capacity and its capabilities in relation to technology. If you know a provider can’t provide the technology you need, it’s best to consider your options.
Always do your homework
In the early stages of looking into GPS software providers, ensure they have the capability to provide the required APIs for Avenue and any other services you need. Having to build this functionality from scratch with a provider will be costly and ultimately, increase the longevity of any project timeline. Understand what a provider has available now and ask for specific customer examples if possible so that you can see their system in action.
What do you want your customers to see? In most cases, your customers will want to know just one thing in relation to freight: when will their order arrive? Now is the time to consider things such as showing a map based view or having a countdown clock that tracks an items travel progress.
If you ask us, it’s never been a more exciting time to be involved in the digital marketing space. Freight tracking provides you with yet another channel where you can communicate directly with your customers and ultimately, reinforce your brand.
When dealing with incorporated programs such as freight tracking, Avenue can assist in the development of these programs into your site. We ensure that your website has an effective ordering and communication portal that caters for your customers’ needs.
Contact Woven to discuss your freight tracking and any other digital marketing needs today.