With modern consumers straying further away from the ideation of ‘brand loyalty’ of the past, on-demand delivery provides the business edge needed to survive in today’s world of instant gratification.
The on-demand economy has revolutionised commercial behaviour. 1 Research points to convenience as the main reason consumers prefer online shopping and delivery services to conventional retailers. The on-demand economy is growing at an unprecedented rate with experts predicting that it will be valued at more than US$300 billion within 10 years. This is due to the high demand from customers who desire affordable, traceable, and fast delivery services they can access at their fingertips.
A growing need for instant gratification coupled with the widespread use of Internet and mobile applications allow customers to order anything from groceries to home appliances and get their items delivered directly to their homes and offices. FastFast is a response to this need where fast and smooth transactions are key to customer satisfaction.
Founded by Ms Elim Chew, Mr Adrian Ng, Mr Julian Low, and Mr Axton Salim, FastFast is a platform that provides instant courier services. A customer simply downloads the application (app), and indicates a delivery address and parcel size to get a quote. The app will then locate the nearest approved drivers for the customer to choose from, and customers will be able to track their delivery through the app.
“We had two main goals: to change the way people think about performing courier services, and to have a sustainable business that can support our couriers while providing the best customer experience to all our valued customers on the platform,” says Mr Julian Low.
Having a shared platform has made it possible to achieve both goals. “We always had a sharing economy, however it was really small previously due to a lack of information,” says Mr Low. Take the yellowpages for instance. When it was published, consumers could search for services and businesses they never knew existed. Likewise, a sharing economy democratises this information so that it is no longer monopolised by the few companies that use information arbitrage. With the rise of these platforms, information on existing opportunities can now disrupt businesses that have held an unfair advantage over smaller business owners. As such, the playing field has been levelled.”
FastFast’s platform enables the company to offer jobs for individuals in need of an extra income—especially those who prefer a more flexible work arrangement. FastFast drivers are their own boss: they decide when they want to work at their own convenience. The firm partners community organisations in Singapore as well to extend job opportunities to disadvantaged individuals. “Be it students or retired folks, we wanted to provide a critical and regular source of income for anyone who needs full or part-time employment. So on-demand delivery helps those who are looking for a flexible employment, providing them with the income they need without restricting them to fixed hours,” says Mr Low.
FastFast drivers today number in the thousands and they have one of the largest fleets in Singapore. To be a FastFast driver, a candidate must possess a vehicle (motorcycle, car, van, or truck), a valid driving license, and undergo some training hours in order to maintain a certain quality and service standard. “We ensure your package is in safe hands by only allowing approved and trained drivers to deliver your package,” says Mr Low. “All of our drivers have valid driving licenses and their vehicles are up to FastFast’s safety standards. All vehicles and drivers are insured and reviewed on a half-yearly basis so you can be assured that your package gets to its destination safely.”
The subsidies given are justified internally as a form of marketing spend. “Traditionally, to acquire a customer through a marketing funnel, a start-up might need to spend tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars,” says Mr Low. “For every customer that they acquire (cost of customer acquisition), the start-up realises that the amount spent can be anywhere from a few cents to hundreds of dollars, depending on the cost of advertising. Thus, most start-ups now realise that it’s cheaper to subsidise the customer and acquire him/her for repeat purchases (lifetime value of the customer) rather than spend all that money on advertising. Not all subsidies remain; only those that can justify that the lifetime value of the customer outweighs the cost of customer acquisition.”
With modern consumers straying further away from the ideation of ‘brand loyalty’ of the past, on-demand delivery provides the business edge needed to survive in the fast-paced world of instant gratification. 1
1 FastFast, 2 August 2016, What Is On-Demand Delivery?, https://fastfast.delivery/blog.
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