Solving ecommerce last-mile challenges with web and mobile apps

RESULT

Up to
40k

daily sales deliveries improved
Highlights
Use of Google solutions such as OR-Tools, Maps, Distance Matrix
Project goal
Create web and mobile apps for optimizing an ecommerce last-mile process
Technologies
Django | React | React Native | Celery | PostGIS | Kubernetes

RESULTS

Up to 40k

daily sales deliveries improved

Project goal

Create web and mobile apps for optimizing an ecommerce last-mile process

Technologies

Django | React | React Native | Celery | PostGIS | Kubernetes

Highlights

Use of Google solutions such as OR-Tools, Maps, Distance Matrix

RESULTS

Up to 40K

daily sales deliveries improved
Project goal

Create web and mobile apps for optimizing an ecommerce last-mile process

Highlights

Use of Google solutions such as OR-Tools, Maps, Distance Matrix

Technologies

Django | React | React Native | Celery | PostGIS | Kubernetes

Farmashop is one of Octobot's long-lasting partners

Mockup of last-mile ecommerce app.
Mockup of last-mile ecommerce app.

Farmashop is one of Octobot's long-lasting partners

This pharmacy retail chain has more than 100 locations and 1,500+ employees. They are dedicated to facilitating people's access to medications and other products that can increase their quality of life. We've been working together on various software development projects since 2017.

User research  1,500+ employees
User research  100+ branches
User research  Various projects delivered together with Octobot

How to make a delivery process more efficient

How to make a delivery process more efficient

Besides the physical stores, Farmashop provides their customers with an ecommerce platform where they can purchase products from the comfort of their own homes. Nowadays, they already have a delivery system in place to manage the orders, but it's not as efficient as it could be.

A common problem, for example, was branches assigning deliveries independently, which meant there would be a drugstore with more orders than they could manage while their neighbor store had delivery people with nothing to do.

Looking for a more sustainable, scalable solution, they decided to work with a tech partner to create a last-mile system focused on improving the ecommerce experience.

A project composed of last-mile planning, web, and mobile development

A project composed of last-mile planning, web, and mobile development

According to TechTarget, the "last-mile delivery is a term used for transportation of merchandise from the nearest distribution hub to the final destination, such as a home or business." In the last 5 years, the technology involved in increasing the process’ effectiveness has evolved non-stop.

This client decided to build a custom solution because existing products weren't flexible enough to fulfill their needs. As we had collaborated previously in the ecommerce platform, and also in another project for an ESB solution, Octobot was the natural choice for them.

The project's main goal is to dynamically optimize routing to deliver the ecommerce orders placed by customers. It consists of creating a web app for managing the orders, and a mobile app where delivery people can access the pickup and delivery information for each day.

We got started by setting up the project's back end, where the routing planning process takes place. It was important to accept it as a gradual process: first we managed simple planifications, with few deliveries, and later we increased the complexity by adding extra factors. Soon, we started to parallelize the development of the web and the mobile app in order to move forward with the front end as well and deliver the MVP.

An important aspect of this project were UX activities led by our designers in order to clearly understand users’ needs and challenges. We conducted user interviews and testing sessions to make sure we were building a solution to meet their expectations.

How it works

Routing planning
We use Google OR-Tools for the planning process required for receiving orders and defining the right routing for each one.
Web app
In the web platform, administrators and logistic employees from Farmashop can see, in real time, the daily planification and follow-up on various orders and deliveries.
Mobile app
With the mobile app, the delivery people learn their daily tasks: where they should go, at what time, and the delivery specifications for each client.
Routing planning

We use Google OR-Tools for the planning process required for receiving orders and defining the right routing for each one.

Web app

In the web platform, administrators and logistic employees from Farmashop can see, in real time, the daily planification and follow-up on various orders and deliveries.

Mobile app

With the mobile app, the delivery people learn their daily tasks: where they should go, at what time, and the delivery specifications for each client.

Do you want to transform your business and your users’ lives?

Software developers working
Software developers working

A challenging "real-life project" that impacts many people

A challenging "real-life project" that impacts many people

OR-Tools and other Google technologies were fundamental for coordinating all the parts involved in planning the deliveries. For us, the main challenge consisted of creating the right data sets for comprehensibility of the tools - considering the many variables such as a vehicle's capacity, timelines, locations, and more. It's a very interesting project because of the massive role different "analog" factors have on the product value and use cases.

Another challenging aspect of this project was reaching synergy across all platforms and correctly managing the many asynchronous tasks involved, without showcasing to users the behind-the-scenes complexity. Celery was an incredibly useful asset for doing so.

Scalability was another factor the system must support, since the more orders, locations, and users you add to the system, the more complex it becomes. Nowadays, the platform is being used by a few branches and, as we test it and adjust details, more stores will adopt it.

By finding the optimal planification for the deliveries, Farmashop is able to minimize times and complete every delivery on time. Also, it also allows the company to improve their logistics services and decrease costs in gas, personnel, and customer service.

Software developers working
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