Recent disruptions highlighted the dangers of an overloaded supply chain, with capacity strained by the very business models that built consumer reliance on e-commerce. An agile and resilient supply chain has become one where capacity is key, and retailers look beyond legacy carriers for shipping solutions.

In a world where the only certainty is uncertainty, here are three ways carrier diversity offers small and mid-size retailers the flexibility they need to succeed in e-commerce:

Matching Volume with Capacity

There is a natural ebb and flow of parcel volume, driven by a combination of seasonality, consumer demand and product availability. Small to mid-size retailers are seeking capacity that aligns with their needs require flexibility.

By aggregating parcel volume from multiple shippers within a few metropolitan areas, AirTerra is able to lower shipping costs while getting product moving down the road to customers.

Building in Predictability

Consumers are demanding speed, reliability and predictability in their purchase process. Legacy carriers that rely on a hub-and-spoke model experience more delays, lost packages and other snafus just by virtue of their many touchpoints for each parcel.

AirTerra’s point-to-point network ships long zone parcels to major metro markets, cutting time, lowering cost, and eliminating unpredictability.

Power of Choice

The greatest benefit of carrier diversity is that it is not a one-size-fits-all solution. AirTerra provides a complete end-to-end shipping solution by offering retailers a choice of many regional parcel carriers and USPS delivery options for the last mile.

The Case for Change

A recent article in the trade publication Sourcing Journal provided an inside look at American Eagle Outfitters which is walking the talk of carrier diversity with its purchase of two logistics companies, AirTerra and Quiet Logistics, creating a network for businesses to share supply chain logistics and boost efficiencies.

“We at American Eagle are creating a supply chain platform that levels the playing field for everyone,” said Shekar Natarajan, chief supply chain officer at American Eagle Outfitters in the interview with Sourcing Journal. “Networks are built analog, but supply chains and commerce have become more digital. We’re basically trying to put the two together,” he said, adding that while the industry average is about 1.4 shipments for every order, AEO can now do it in 1.05. “And it’s not just fewer packages showing up faster at your doorstep, but more importantly, it’s showing up cheaper as well”

AEO began by asking the important question: ‘How do we get closer to the end consumer but do it in a smarter way?’” The answer: carrier diversification.

AirTerra, an innovative parcel shipping company, announced today it has been nominated for a 2022 Edison Award. The Edison Best New Product Awards™ is an annual competition honoring excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centered design, and innovation. AirTerra is nominated in the Manufacturing, Logistics and Transportation Category.

The competition is open to innovative organizations across the globe, such as AirTerra. The Edison Awards are focused on the innovators as much as the innovations – a unique distinction in the world of award programs. Award winners represent “game-changing” products and services, as well as excellence and leadership in innovation around four criteria: Concept, Value, Delivery, and Impact. The 2022 Edison Award winners will be announced in February 2022 on Thomas Edison’s 175th birthday.

Over the last 34 years, being recognized with an Edison Award has become one of the highest accolades a product can receive in the name of innovation success. The awards are named after Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931) whose inventions, new product development methods, and innovative achievements changed the world, garnering him 1,093 U.S. patents and making him a household name around the world.

The Edison Awards are operated by the Edison Universe a 501c3 non-profit organization with the mission of recognizing, honoring and fostering innovations and innovators.

About AirTerra
AirTerra is an innovative parcel shipping company that solves ecommerce challenges in a unique way so retailers and brands of all sizes can compete on a level playing field. With AirTerra, you get access to more capacity, greater flexibility, and benefit from simplified pricing, contracts, onboarding and carrier management, all without the additional cost required to manage multiple carriers. We provide Diversification Simplified. Learn more at https://airterra.com.

About The Edison Awards™
The Edison Awards™ is an annual competition designed to honor excellence in new product and service development, marketing, human-centered design and innovation. Winners represent “game-changing” products, services, excellence and leadership in innovation around four criteria: Concept, Value, Delivery and Impact. Started in 1987, The Awards are named after inventor Thomas A. Edison and symbolize persistence and excellence in innovation as personified by him. Learn more at https://edisonawards.com/.

In today’s world, instant gratification is not only possible, but it has become the expectation. However, buying online has also become the norm rather than purchasing at brick-and-mortar locations. This means an inevitable wait for products to arrive. And while ecommerce shipment times have improved over the years, there’s mystery in the interim. Here are a few of the most common customer service questions we get asked after a package ships:

Where is my package?

Or as we call it in the ecommerce industry “WISMO” aka “Where is my order?” Naturally, you want to be able to follow your package’s journey to you from the moment it ships! Full transparency WISMO capability is evolving all the time providing more end to end lines of sight into where your package is at any given moment.

AirTerra’s WISMO page can be found here.

Why do I have multiple tracking numbers for one order?

There are many moving parts within a package journey to you. These are separated into “miles” and consist of first, middle and final (last) mile. Sometimes shipping companies will use several carriers throughout your package’s journey, which is why you might see your initial tracking number provided by your retailer, but two tracking numbers on your package, as one may be the final mile carrier.

AirTerra’s tracking numbers will reflect all “miles” of your package journey even if multiple carriers are used.

I need additional help, what should I do?

While it is nice to have a variety of options to self-serve issues, sometimes you still have a question that is not covered. It is always good to start with the retailer you made your purchase with for the most expedited solution. AirTerra works closely with retail customer service teams to get consumers fast resolutions. At AirTerra, we pass all of our shipping data through to our retail customers for a unified tracking experience!

If you do need to get in touch with AirTerra directly, you can reach us here!