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How Rakuten France improved the shipment tracking experience for their customers with AfterShip

Rakuten France electrified their customer experience with automated order tracking


Acting as a middleman for eCommerce merchants and shoppers worldwide, Rakuten France felt lost in the middle of thousands of orders every month. They could feel their grip slipping from delivering a seamless customer delivery experience without a centralized location to track where the orders are and if the customers received their shipments on time.


AfterShip was the turning point for Rakuten France, which helped them consolidate all their tracking data across different carriers in one place and empowered merchants to meet the customers' delivery expectations with accurate courier performance insights. This helped Rakuten France improve their customer support response time and foster better relationships with merchants. Here's how they did it.

1-click
order tracking
Improved
customer support response time
Seamless
carrier integration
Background

The leading eCommerce website specialized in electronics


Rakuten France is a leading online marketplace in France. fr.shopping.rakuten.com is the fifth most visited e-commerce website in the country.

1,000,000+

1,000,000+

Monthly shipments

France

France

Headquarters

Automotive parts

Automotive parts

Industry and platform

The Challenge: Playing catch up with customers​​ after they click the ‘Buy’ button

Rakuten France connects merchants (professionals or individuals) to buyers, providing a trusted platform for customers to purchase products from thousands of sellers worldwide. This calls for accurate and centralized delivery time communication to customers and visibility to merchants so that they can select the suitable carrier to fulfill those delivery expectations.

Meeting vendor expectations with accurate data delivery

On-time delivery is critical for online vendors. Rakuten France needed to convey precise delivery time expectations to customers and empower merchants to choose the suitable carrier to meet those requirements.

Moreover, Rakuten France acts as the middleman for buyer payments, only releasing funds to merchants after delivery confirmation. This made it crucial for Rakuten France to capture proof of delivery of all couriers. Otherwise, merchants’ payments would not be released on time and damage their relationship with the brand.

Rakuten France struggled with centralizing tracking data of their carriers. Individually integrating that data with their platform consumed substantial time and resources.

How AfterShip helped Rakuten France scale with tracking automation

Since merchants can select the shipping carrier of their choice, they struggled to answer customer inquiries about delivery status. AfterShip was the perfect solution to end this struggle.

"Before using the AfterShip shipment tracking platform, we had to access the websites of as many as fifty to sixty couriers to provide shipment updates to merchants and buyers. Consolidating tracking data was carried out semi-manually. Not only was it unreliable, but it also took a lot of workforce and resources to safeguard the receipt of goods."

Habib-Sylvain Gourguet
Director of Customer Relationship at Rakuten France

Delivering premium brand experience to modern shoppers

After integrating with AfterShip, Rakuten France’s merchants and buyers can see delivery updates directly on the Rakuten France platform. The company no longer had to manually extract data from hundreds of separate courier websites individually.

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The engineering team at Rakuten France used the AfterShip API to build a custom tracking page that displayed up-to-date delivery status and expected delivery time. Customers can easily navigate the page through order history or shipping confirmation notifications to know their order’s latest update.

On the Rakuten France seller portal, merchants can view a courier’s delivery performance and compare delivery times. Based on AfterShip’s historical data, Rakuten France also recommends courier services to merchants based on delivery time and shipping performance.

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Automating tracking and post-purchase interaction to keep up with growing demand

Moving forward, Rakuten France is planning to integrate AfterShip data with their CRM system to automate their operations further. This will enable the Rakuten France service team to answer customer tickets more effectively, with delivery status shown directly in the CRM system. Gourguet emphasized that Rakuten France would consider integrating AfterShip’s “webhooks” feature in their upcoming mobile app. With AfterShip webhooks, merchants can proactively send notifications to customers about changes in delivery status and encourage customers to review the product and the courier service after delivery.

Supercharging success through a healthier tracking experience

Rakuten France partnered with AfterShip to integrate all their couriers and retrieve unified tracking data automatically.

"AfterShip is the most advanced shipment tracking solution in the market. It only took 1-2 weeks for our engineers to implement."

Habib-Sylvain Gourguet
Director of Customer Relationship at Rakuten France

One-click on-site order tracking

Rakuten France improved customer experience by showing delivery updates directly in the on-platform order history instead of sending customers to courier websites.

Seamless carrier integration from one platform

Eliminating the engineering cost of integrating multiple couriers, Rakuten France used AfterShip's API to standardize tracking updates from all couriers.

Accurate delivery data across carriers every time

AfterShip helped obtain reliable and standardized proof of delivery (POD) to expedite the ability of the finance department to release merchant payments.

Improved customer support service response time

Delivery updates are now sent to Rakuten France's CRM via the AfterShip API to help customer support specialists answer tickets faster without visiting the courier website.

Quick and reliable payments to merchants

Merchant loyalty was improved by reducing payment processing time with the proof of delivery for all the carriers at Rakuten France’s disposal.

Harmonized data on all carriers down to shipment level

Merchants got insight into their shipping performance to help them choose the best courier based on the desired delivery time.

Reliable data source

Merchants’ performance can now be measured against their SLA based on delivery performance, e.g., valid tracking rates, and delivery rates, etc.

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