Great News – You Can Now Offer FedEx “Hold-at-Location” Addresses at Checkout

January 22nd, 2019 @ 04:49pm Sheri Hebbeln Product Features

We’re delighted to share the news that we’ve rolled out an additional delivery option for your customers. When checking out or joining a wine club they can now select a FedEx retail location and avoid the inconvenience of having to be home to sign for delivery.  Their wine will be held securely at a FedEx location of their choice for up to five business days - at no additional cost.

The adult signature requirement has long been an impediment to gaining better traction in DTC, and at truvi, we’re proud to be one of the first to offer this option to wineries up front – at the point-of-purchase.

Rob McMillan shed some interesting light on recent trends in the wine industry during his annual SVB State of the Wine Industry webcast.  According to his research, DTC accounts for 61% of the average family winery’s revenue today. And the combination of tasting room, wine club, and onsite events accounts for approximately 82% of the direct sales mix. However, in many parts of the country tasting room visitation has been trending down over the last few years. It is now more important than ever for wineries to find ways to increase online sales.  

In order to do that, one of the first things we should be looking at is the delivery experience. Consumers have been conditioned to expect delivery to be fast and convenient.  According to a recent survey commissioned by FedEx, 50% of those surveyed have abandoned a shopping cart because they weren’t happy with the delivery options.  Unfortunately, wine requires an adult signature and that requirement interferes with the convenience factor. One way around that is to suggest shipping to a business; but that option doesn’t work for everyone. Some larger employers actually discourage it. We feel that adding Hold-at-Location to the checkout experience is an ideal compromise. 

How it Works

  1. When shopping online or joining a wine club, your customer is prompted with a message similar to the following:

“If you’re not going to be home to sign for your wine, you can select a convenient FedEx location.”

  1. truvi presents three options for the customer to choose from, with a map for convenience. 

  1. Once the order arrives at the FedEx location, your customer receives a notification. 
  2. The order is held behind the counter until he or she arrives and shows an I.D. 

Many wineries use workarounds, like allowing the customer to redirect a package after it has shipped using the FedEx Delivery Manager program.  That’s okay, however, allowing them to select a retail location up front is far more convenient. 

For compliance purposes we’ve taken some additional steps in the back-end including: 

  • We present multiple options and allow the customer to choose (i.e. you don’t choose for them)
  • The language presented at checkout indicates that these are carrier (not winery) locations
  • The options presented don’t cross state lines (i.e. we limit them to the same state)
  • We’ve made the HAL options configurable in the back-end to allow for the exclusion of certain retailers in certain states  
  • We store all three addresses (billing, shipping, and Hold-at-Location) so that the proper address can be used for compliance reporting

For wineries, there are several benefits: 

  • You are able to minimize returns and redirect fees. Because of the adult signature requirement, we know that return rates can run as high as 2% to 3% for the wine industry.
  • You avoid residential surcharges. A large portion of wine orders are currently shipped to a residence. 
  • Your customers are happier. Many customers will avoid shopping online if they are not happy with the delivery options.

This new feature is available to customers who use truvi’s Shipment Manager module.  If you plan to be at the DTC Symposium or Oregon Wine Symposium, please be sure to stop by our booth to see Hold-at-Locations in action. If not, we’d be happy to give you a demo