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E-logistics: how to control costs and optimise your transport budget?

As an e-tailer, you regularly ship orders. You are certainly aiming to control your flows and reduce logistics costs to increase your margins while keeping your customers satisfied.

Once you have set up key performance indicators (or KPIs), you must analyse the results to be able to take the necessary measures to control your costs.


What strategies work? How can you control logistics costs to optimise your delivery budget?


Eliminating the causes of carrier returns

Carrier returns represent significant logistics costs for e-commerce businesses. There are 3 main causes for returns:

  1. “Not known at this address”
  2. Damage
  3. Time limit for pending delivery exceeded

There are solutions for all of them!

“Not known at this address” or “Not deliverable as addressed”

These problems are caused by incorrect addresses or the carrier's failure to find certain addresses. To resolve these problems, you can use address verification and validation tools to correct and verify postal addresses, both domestic and international. These solutions are essential if you want to avoid paying additional costs for returning and handling the goods, wasting time finding the correct data and running the risk of disappointing a customer. You should opt for this type of solution when the percentage of undelivered goods becomes too high.


Damage is caused either by the goods being inadequately packed or by the carrier's lack of care in handling them. One of these two causes needs to be eliminated, and the first step is to use better protective packaging. If the damage rate doesn't change, then the carrier is at fault...

Time limit for pending delivery has been exceeded

This means that the recipient did not collect the parcel within the time limit and represents wasted time and money for e-commerce businesses. It also indicates that the recipient has not been sufficiently or adequately informed that their package is awaiting collection. And the solution? Enhancing the information process, by sending SMS notifications, in addition to e-mails.

Checking carrier invoices

Carriers can make mistakes on their invoices, so you should check them routinely. To identify these errors effectively and comprehensively, you should check the weight, the service invoiced and the shipping costs, as well as any additional taxes, and compare them with your actual shipments. As these invoices can be several hundred pages long each month (all shipments being listed on one invoice), a manual check is hardly possible but there are tools that can automate this process.

Conducting industrial management of transport disputes based on mutual-gains negotiation

Transport disputes can quickly become a source of tension with your carriers if they are not managed in a rational way. Even if some carriers contractually agree to meet the 1st delivery attempt deadline, it will not make much sense, for example, to trigger a complaint for every late shipment. If you wish to receive compensation for these delays, it is best to negotiate flat-rate discounts that will save time for both the sender and the carrier.

There are other causes of disputes that can be managed on a case-by-case basis, such as missing (or lost) packages and damage. You should always be careful to separate the handling of customer complaints from transport disputes. For example, if a parcel has not been delivered to a customer, you must act (refund or reshipment) without waiting for the outcome of the dispute with the carrier, which can take up to 30 days.

Eliminating the causes of delivery dissatisfaction is an effective lever for e-commerce businesses looking not only to build customer loyalty, but also to optimise logistics costs.

How can you control your costs?

With the WelcomeTrack tool you can:

  • Establish proactive communication with your customers to reduce returns.
  • Reduce your transport budget thanks to automated invoice control and industrial management of claims to carriers.