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Love and Logistics: Strengthen Supply Chain Collaboration

Any relationship needs attention. Just as love and effort are required for a romantic relationship, fostering collaboration will further supply chain relationships and spread the love to customers. This relationship-oriented holiday seems like the perfect time to focus on supply chain collaboration. Valentine’s Day is one of the biggest days of the year for businesses due to its high demand for goods and services. To meet this demand, effective logistics practices must be in place to ensure that those goods and services are delivered on time and with the highest quality. When the various pieces of a supply chain work together harmoniously and collaboratively, businesses can ensure their customers get what they need for a perfect Valentine’s Day.

The Big Stats on Logistics and Valentine’s Day

The numbers show how important Valentine’s Day is for logistics. Last year, the National Retail Federation found that 53 percent of Americans planned to take part in the holiday and that the average amount spent was approximately $175. This is more average spending than in the past 10 years, with the exception of 2020. While some of this money is spent on dates, much of it is spent on gifts. Valentine’s Day spending goes beyond the U.S. For instance, in the U.K. last year, Finder.com expected people to spend 22 pounds each for a total of 1.37 billion pounds toward this holiday. In 2021, 38 percent of U.S. shoppers went online for their Valentine’s Day gifts, depending on logistics providers to bring those items from warehouses or stores to the recipient’s address. Nonetheless, logistics is also needed to bring the items that 29 percent of v-day consumers purchased from department stores and the rest bought from discount, specialty, or local independent stores for this holiday.

The Traditional Presents Are Still Swoon-Worthy on Valentine’s Day 2023

Gifts fill the Valentine’s Day logistics landscape, as supply chains and carriers need to create and transport those in-demand items. The top gifts for this holiday, according to the National Retail Federation, are:
  • Candy
  • Greeting cards
  • Flowers
This preference differs a bit in the U.K., where many look for secondhand gifts and unique gifts, explains Finder.com. Yet, many in this market also go for classics like chocolates, heart items, gift cards, flowers, perfume, and lingerie.

Logistics and Transportation Management Best Practices for Valentine’s Day

Logistics professionals need to plan for Valentine’s Day just as they do for other gift-oriented holidays. There must be supply chain collaboration with a well-planned logistics process from manufacturers to retailers, efficient warehousing and transportation systems to move products quickly, and accurate tracking of orders and inventory management. Logistics also plays an important role by providing businesses with data about customer preferences, which can help them plan their marketing campaigns accordingly. Here are some Valentine’s Day logistics best practices:
  • Tailor transportation to what each type of item requires, as things like chocolate and flowers, require temperature-controlled transportation, and flowers need to be delivered within a specific time frame before they wilt. While non-perishables might not require reefer shipping, shippers transporting fragile items may find themselves having to worry about additional packaging costs. 
  • Think about better order management and digitizing to improve the order-to-cash process.
  • Plan a supply chain from manufacturers to retailers, and then work to connect an end-to-end supply chain that promotes collaboration and visibility for all.
  • Develop efficient warehousing and transportation systems, as well as appointment scheduling.
  • Set up an accurate way of tracking orders and inventory management to ensure you have enough stock to meet demand.
  • Invest in actionable analytics to better understand customer demand and build efficiency in fulfillment strategies.
  • Ensure that customers receive the items they need for their perfect Valentine’s Day by using multimodal capabilities to achieve on-time delivery and by providing tracking information.

The Role of a Collaborative TMS to Make Customers Love You

A transportation management system (TMS) is a key tool that can support shippers as they plan and execute their Valentine’s Day logistics strategies. A collaborative TMS can provide logistics monitoring, modeling, and execution tools. It supports essential parts of holiday shipping like:
  • Collaboration: The successful way to ensure timely delivery and integrity of goods is through collaboration between all members of the logistics and transportation team.
  • Visibility: Increasing visibility into the supply chain and transportation helps ensure timely delivery and improves customer service.
  • Shipment Execution: It’s essential to be on top of end-to-end shipment management to ensure proper execution.
  • Analytics: Collecting relevant data and analyzing it provides helpful insights, such as a better sense of customer demand for Valentine’s Day.

Meet Holiday Demand Through Supply Chain Collaboration

Valentine’s Day creates a large number of shipments of holiday gifts, each of which has its own unique shipping requirements. Bolstering collaboration between team members and supply chain collaboration strategies between logistics partners helps create harmony for an effective supply chain. Schedule a demo with Turvo, and learn how your business can help spread the love this Valentine’s Day.

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