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Home delivery shifts into high gear

28.09.2018

The e-commerce boom is upending the logistics industry. Businesses are racing to see who can deliver products faster and more conveniently.

Improving last mile logistics has become the number one priority for retailers and delivery providers. In the United States, Amazon is experimenting with drone-based delivery, while in Germany the company is testing in-car delivery, in partnership with DHL. Disruptive initiatives such as these are revolutionising the delivery services industry.

Traditional delivery companies like Chronopost, DHL, FedEx, TNT Express and UPS Express are struggling to modernise and keep pace with innovation as more and more newcomers enter the market. In addition to Colisweb and Deliveree, hundreds of start-ups have jumped on the e-commerce delivery bandwagon, relying on couriers to get packages to urban doorsteps faster. Delivery time is a top priority in the e-commerce industry. According to the Fédération du e-commerce et de la vente à distance (Fevad), 88% of French e­shoppers prefer to have their packages delivered to their home or office. Only 38% of online customers opt for in-store pickup, also known as click and collect.

Optimising the reception process

The harsh competitive environment is forcing market players to come up with new strategies, especially due to the fast growth of the e-commerce industry. In 2017, nearly three million e­shoppers were added in France, according to a Médiamétrie web user study. During the year, some 36.9 million Internet users – i.e., eight out of ten netizens – made an online purchase. Getting orders delivered to customers on time the first time is important, points out Bruno Sanlaville, CEO of BSC Business Stratégies Conseil, a consulting firm specialised in urban delivery: “Full control of the business model means getting the parcel to the customer quickly and finding a solution if delivery is impossible.” Logistics providers are introducing innovative solutions that make it easier for customers to schedule a delivery appointment and stay in control of the shipping process as long as they can, while also shortening delivery times. 

100% EV delivery

Some start-ups have specialised in package collection and delivery. Mister Pasha is a concierge delivery service accessible via mobile application. The company picks up the customer’s online order and delivers it between 6:00 p.m. and midnight on weekdays and 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays. The ability to schedule convenient delivery times is crucial for e-merchants looking to boost customer loyalty. 

The start-up Waant, for example, vows to provide total convenience, thanks to its express delivery service. It promises to pick up a package in less than 30 minutes and deliver it in less than an hour. Created in July 2017, Waant provides a variety of white glove delivery services, such as store-to-customer, e-commerce and inter-store transfer. Couriers dressed in suits and ties handle items with the same care and attention as the luxury outlets and boutiques at which they were purchased. The company’s fleet of secure and insured all‑electric vehicles transports high value-added products safely and securely to their destination.

Besides speed, price is the other major consideration when choosing a transporter. Upela.com is a rate comparison tool that brings transparency to users by enabling them to compare the shipping services and rates of the main domestic and international express delivery companies. According to Fevad, most shoppers believe the normal delivery rate should be somewhere between €5 and €10. That said, 45% of all e-customers are ready to pay a premium for evening or weekend delivery. Flexible time-slot delivery is becoming more and more popular. Of the many benefits it has to offer, speed of service is the most important. The system is more convenient for transporters as well, who can avoid rush hour traffic.

 

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