The origins of e-commerce can be traced back to the 1948–49 Berlin blockade and airlift, with goods being ordered via telex, a system that evolved and was elaborated upon for decades, coming to fruition in 1993 when the first browser for accessing the Web was born. Or so we thought.
Fast forward to smartphones, super-fast broadband, wearable tech, and you have what many consumers now simply call commerce. The 'e' is largely superfluous. Challenging times for the High Street, but bread and butter for online retailers.
As shoppers, we now demand a high quality, instant purchasing experience - this has resulted in an expectation of rapid fulfilment and distribution which would have been unimaginable a decade ago. This in turn has spawned a huge wave of technological innovation in more efficient and cost-effective systems of delivery. However, the biggest and most costly challenge remains the same - that devilish last mile.
Last Mile Logistics is the term used to describe the final stage of a product’s journey, when it finally arrives at the buyer’s door. In addition to being key to customer satisfaction, this 'last mile' is the most expensive and time-consuming stage of the shipping process. A headache for retailers, for sure, but a source of opportunities for those with the requisite skills and business acumen.
With over 200 million Prime members worldwide, 13 million of whom are right here in the UK, it is evident that the name Amazon is synonymous not only with e-commerce but with 'immediacy' in terms of customer expectation. But, all those 'smiles' don't deliver themselves, and Amazon is looking for help.
They want hands-on small business owners who are passionate about building and developing great teams, with low start-up costs, built-in demand, and access to Amazon's technology and logistics experience. It's an opportunity to join a community of Amazon Delivery Service Partners in one of the fastest-growing industries in the world.
X-Forces Enterprise has partnered with Amazon to develop a bespoke training programme for budding entrepreneurs within the military community. This course supports ambitious individuals and strong leaders to launch and operate their own parcel delivery businesses, working with Amazon.
Ask yourself: what small business owner wouldn't want one of the world's largest companies as a client?
The next workshop takes place on Wednesday 15th June, from 09:30 to 16:30.Read more about the case study here.