What Is First Mile Delivery?

Davey Langham

April 28, 2022

Davey Langham

First mile delivery is the initial step in the transportation process, in which products, materials, equipment or other goods are moved through the first leg of the shipping supply chain. Each supply chain is different, and that is certainly true of the construction industry.

The first mile could refer to delivering raw manufacturing materials from a processing facility to a manufacturing company. Or it could refer to delivering finished products from a manufacturer's warehouse to their distribution center. Wherever you are in the supply chain, your first mile will be unique to your business.

After goods are moved across the first mile, a carrier, shipping company, or logistics partner will pick up the products and move them to the next leg in the destination. First mile delivery is the initial delivery transportation. A great example of this could be whenever you place an order with a large online retailer. The order is placed with the retailer and then it is picked up from a regional distributor and then delivered to a local retail branch.

Why Is the First Mile Important in Shipping and Logistics?

First mile delivery is one of the most important aspects of the order fulfillment process. If the process is subpar or inefficient in any way, it is certain to have a trickle-down effect on the rest of the order fulfillment supply chain. A growing problem is that businesses are not putting in the time and care that first mile delivery deserves. This is where Curri comes in.

Curri is built on moving material fast, reliably, and professionally. Another huge problem of first mile delivery for many companies is that the process is just too manual for our modern age. Tracking shipments often requires phone calls, writing down ETA’s on paper, and a less-than-stellar customer experience. There is traditionally no type of technology embedded in the first mile delivery stage. Once a shipment is picked up from a distributor, tracking is usually very limited. Whenever an order is picked up via Curri, we provide a few things that will help aid the process of tracking and peace of mind. Not only do we provide photos of the cargo, but with our live tracking system, you will never wonder where your shipment is or when it will arrive.

Examples of First Mile Delivery in Manufacturing & Distribution

The construction industry is comprised of a vast array of businesses in a complex and interconnected supply chain. Wherever your business is located in the supply chain, the next step is where your first mile begins. And Curri is ready to get the job done. From raw materials to finished products and eCommerce fulfillment, Curri's first mile service makes it easy to kickstart your downstream supply chain.

Transport for Raw Manufacturing Materials

For many manufacturing companies in the construction industry, the first step in their supply chain is inbound transport of raw manufacturing materials. Optimal efficiency and tracking for inbound materials have several positives, but two of the biggest are reliable operations and a smooth downstream supply chain. Ensuring that your materials are delivered on time will maximize your teams' output and ensure the most efficient processes.

Transport for Completed Products

The goal of first mile shipping for completed products is simple - get the finished product through the supply chain to the customer as quickly as possible. An outsider's perspective of this is very one-dimensional. Outbound transport is much more than just loading a truck and delivering. Outbound transport has several things which factor into it such as order fulfillment, packing, assigning a vehicle, assigning a driver, ensuring quality delivery, and finally customer satisfaction upon delivery. If you want to ensure a quality delivery experience, remember the 7R’s coined by John J. Coyle, Professor Emeritus of Logistics and Supply Chain Management at Penn State University: “Getting the right product, to the right customer, in the right quantity, in the right condition, at the right place, the right time and at the right cost.”

First Mile Shipping to Warehouse & Distribution Partners

As touched on earlier, the first mile means different things at different stages in the supply chain. If you are not using an on-demand delivery service, the flow of deliveries will look a bit different. In this form of first mile, products will be shipped from the manufacturers' warehouse to a holding center. For example, if you are working with a local pool installation company there are several steps before the product arrives at your door and is ready to assemble by the crew. You may be able to order an Intex pool at your local store, but if they don’t have it in stock what is the next step? Most likely the local chain will place an order with their representative at Intex for the pool they need. That pool will make many stops at different holding centers or warehouses before it makes its way to your local store and then to you.

Logistics for Retail & eCommerce Fulfillment

Retail and eCommerce businesses make the fulfillment process a priority. eCommerce stores don’t have a physical location, so filling orders quickly and effectively is a challenge at the top of the priority list. Although most eCommerce seems direct to the customer, there are still several steps in the supply chain at play here. Once an order is placed, the items will either be shipped out from a holding center/warehouse or be picked up by a courier and taken to the customer.

Oversized Freight for Vehicles, Machinery & Large Products

For businesses that specialize in the manufacture or assembly of vehicles, machinery, or other large products, first mile delivery can be complicated. What do you do if you have heavy freight or machinery that you need to be delivered? Moving these heavy objects can be expensive and extremely inconvenient. One of the biggest issues that companies will face when trying to ship freight or other oversized items is the availability of vehicles. Imagine your company has two stakebed trucks and two flatbed trucks that are already overtasked with regular deliveries, but one of your customers places a rush order with oversized freight. What do you do? This is when Curri really flexes its muscles. Curri’s fleet is on-demand and always ready to step up whenever you need it.

Your First Choice for the First Mile

First mile delivery is one of the most important aspects of your company’s fulfillment process. This crucial aspect has many factors that play into including vehicle availability, driver staffing, clear and reliable tracking, and much more. Curri can meet all of these needs every single time.

Curri offers a nationwide delivery fleet network that can handle any delivery that may arise in your business. From cars and SUVs to box trucks, sprinter vans and semi-trucks, Curri has what you need, on-demand. Curri offers same-day deliveries as well as scheduled daily routes. To get started on your booking journey with Curri you can sign up or book a delivery.

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