Dolly’s Retail API, explained

By On

We’ve heard it all before: “We can’t offer same-day delivery because it’s too expensive.” Or “it’s too difficult to actually transport big and bulky items.” Or, “the deliveries can be complicated in the cities.” These are some of the most common reasons last-mile delivery can be tricky.

While we’ve always worked with retailers through our QR Code and Transportation Management System solutions, the Retail API is new for 2023 and built specifically to help you overcome these challenges in your online business. 

What is the Dolly Retail API?

The Dolly Retail API is a Rest API that empowers retailers like you to add same-day delivery of big and bulky items to your digital checkout experience. 

Picture this – a customer decides to purchase a couch from your website. You currently offer shipping for the couch, and your shipping window is 4-6 weeks. With the Dolly Retail API, you can offer a second option to your customers – same-day local delivery. Your customer can receive their couch the same day or whenever convenient, like magic.

In addition to self-checkout delivery, the Dolly Retail API will also provide both you and your customer with proactive notifications and updates about the delivery via webhooks and SMS.

This allows for a versatile, powerful, and scalable local delivery and fulfillment program at your business with almost no change to your retail staff’s daily workflow. 

Here are a few use cases for an API of this kind:

  • Use case #1 – A large Texas value club now offers same-day delivery directly from their online store, turning their retail locations into distribution centers. 
  • Use case #2 – DTC businesses can add same-day delivery to their checkout process for customers within the same metro as their distribution centers by leveraging Dolly helpers for last-mile delivery. 
  • Use case #3 – A national self-storage chain is including Dolly moving services as an add-on to their online checkout process for their 1,000+ locations. 

It’s also worth noting that customers love quick delivery, and the Retail API will help you deliver exactly that. Through a 2021 survey about Dolly retail offerings, our team discovered:

  • 72% of customers stated that their Dolly experience positively impacted their impression of the store and that they were more likely to purchase from the retailer again.
  • 13% of customers said they bought more than they planned because same-day delivery was available at the store. 
  • 27% of customers said that would not have purchased their items at all if local delivery wasn’t available.

A few reasons why this is great for you:

  1. Win back your customers. 

Over the past 10 years, Amazon has conditioned consumers to expect delivery within 48 hours. As a result, we’ve seen reduced loyalty to brick-and-mortar retailers. The pandemic especially heightened this as consumers became more comfortable with online shopping. With the Dolly Retail API, your e-commerce business can outperform Amazon’s delivery promise.

  1. Increase inventory to cash velocity 

You already have inventory sitting in your stores. Leverage the Dolly Retail API to fulfill online orders near each store, distribution center, or warehouse. As items are ready to be shipped, Dolly picks them up quickly, and delivers them to your customers. This reduces the amount of inventory. Speeding up delivery will help you turn inventory into cash.

  1. Stay competitive in an uncertain market 

Sell more in what is shaping up to be a difficult year for sales. As consumer confidence wanes, it will be key to have delivery solutions that excite potential customers and make their lives easier. 

A few reasons why this is great for your customers:

  1. Delivery transparency 

Your customers have a one-to-one relationship with their Dolly delivery Helper and will have unprecedented delivery transparency. Customers can live message the Helper and even track their location while the package is en route, similar to watching your Uber driver on a map.

  1. Convenient scheduling

Your customer needs to be home to receive their big and bulky item. Instead of waiting around all day for their stop on the delivery route, customers get to choose an exact one-hour window for their item to arrive. 

  1. Name recognition and proven service 

Dolly has an average customer rating of 4.7 across 31,000 reviews. Your customers have likely used Dolly in your store already through our consumer app.

Let’s get technical and review how it works:

The Dolly Retail API offers typical REST endpoints with JSON payloads. 

The API supports delivery creation, delivery cancellation, delivery edits, status updates, and notifications to the retail team and the customer. 

The API also enables retailers to check the availability of service in a given geographic location, get a committed quote with an expiration date and time, and get a rough delivery estimate of the cost. 

Here’s an example of the payload elements required to create a new delivery:

  • Item details – description, dimensions, weight
  • Pick up location, instructions, and contact information
  • Drop off location, instructions, and contact information
  • Requested pick-up window start and end time

Additional documentation will be shared for technical review during partnership conversations. 

View Dolly API Developer Documentation

Details about Dolly’s delivery network:

You have huge items to deliver, and we have a huge network of drivers – it’s a perfect fit. 

  • We have a network of 15,000+ vetted and background-checked drivers.
  • Our network spans 48 major American cities.
  • Our average customer satisfaction rating is 4.7/5 stars across 31K+ App Store reviews.
  • Our all-time average customer NPS speaks for itself at 80.

Related Posts