Ecommerce Fulfilment Services

Shipment Tracking

A warehouse employee scanning packages as part of the Order Shipping process

Shipment tracking is the process of locating and monitoring the progress of cargo, packages, or parcels as they move from the sender to the recipient. This service is typically provided by logistics companies, courier services, and postal systems. It allows both the sender and the receiver to check the status of a shipment in real time, providing updates on location, movement, and estimated delivery times.

How Shipment Tracking Works
Shipment tracking involves several steps:

  1. Labelling: When a package is prepared for shipping, it is labelled with a unique tracking number. This number is important as it serves as the identifier for all subsequent tracking activities.
  2. Data Capture: The tracking number is scanned each time the package reaches a new checkpoint (e.g., sorting facilities, dispatch centres, delivery hubs). This scan updates the system with the package’s current location.
  3. Updates: The carrier’s tracking information is updated in its system, which is accessible via its website, mobile app, or customer service. Each update includes time-stamped records of the package’s journey.
  4. Notification: Some carriers provide proactive SMS, email, or app notifications to the recipient about the status of their delivery, including potential delays or changes in the delivery schedule.

Importance of Shipment Tracking
Shipment tracking offers several benefits:

  • Transparency: Customers and businesses can see exactly where their shipment is at any moment, enhancing trust in the delivery process.
  • Accountability: Tracking minimizes the risk of lost or stolen parcels as every phase of the delivery process is recorded.
  • Planning: Recipients can plan their schedule better if they know when to expect their delivery.
  • Customer Satisfaction: Efficient tracking systems increase customer satisfaction by managing expectations and reducing delivery uncertainty.

Types of Shipment Tracking Systems
There are various types of shipment tracking systems used by different carriers:

  • Barcode Scanning Systems: These are the most common and involve scanning barcodes attached to packages at various transit points.
  • RFID (Radio Frequency Identification): Uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags attached to objects.
  • GPS Tracking: More commonly used for large shipments like container cargo, where real-time location tracking is important.
  • Bluetooth and IoT: Emerging technologies that provide granular tracking capabilities, especially useful in complex logistics networks.

More Fulfilment Terms

Supply Chain Technology refers to the tools, systems, and solutions designed to streamline and optimise supply chain processes.
A digital supply chain integrates digital technology into all areas of supply chain operations, from sourcing materials to delivering products to the customer.

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