Needless to say, the retail industry has changed over the past 10 years. More items are sold online than ever before and this has increased the need for courier and shipping services the world over. This change has led to a greater number of courier companies starting up and a more efficient industry as a whole – packages can now be sent all over the world for cheaper and more quickly than ever before and the courier industry is growing at around 9% annually as of late 2016. Indeed, the industry is evolving. But where is the courier industry going and what is in store for the future for courier companies?
This article will take a look at where we can expect improvements and further increased efficiency.
Say goodbye to wide time slots for deliveries
There’s no doubt it’s annoying being told that your delivery will arrive between 9am-4pm. It’s even worse when you decide to duck out of the house for a few minutes at some point through the day and find that is the exact time the courier decided to come! With more technology and greater efficiency, it is predicted that soon we’ll be looking at 10 minute windows for courier arrival, giving customers a great deal more flexibility through the day and generally making things more convenient. It would also lessen complaints from customers, meaning courier companies can use resources elsewhere rather than having to deal with angry customers.
We’ll even potentially see GPS devices fitted to courier vehicles, where customers can use their smartphones to see exactly how far away their package is with minute-by-minute updates.
Large Companies Entering The Market
With the huge growth in this industry and it’s close association with the eCommerce boom, we should expect to see more companies enter the market that have not traditionally been associated with courier services in the past. We have already seen the likes of Uber, Amazon and Google get involved and start up their own courier channels, and we’re likely to see others follow suit. This means greater competition for the existing players in the market, which is ultimately a good thing for the consumer as it drives down prices and encourages innovation, which leads us to the next point.
Innovative Delivery Channels
With these new entrants into the market, new ideas and innovations are developing. There is, for instance, an increasing demand for drone delivery services, which enable packages to be sent out in real time from warehouse to customers’ homes. Amazon has been at the forefront of this and it very well may revolutionise the ecommerce industry, despite the fact that we are still a long way off this becoming a viable option for all.
Amazon is also exploring the possibility of making couriers out of pretty much anyone that has access to a smartphone, offering payment for those who are willing to drop of packages to people during their spare time or as they go about their daily business. Uber is reportedly using its drivers to also deliver packages as well as providing rides to passengers.
Without any doubt, the service offered by couriers is going to change considerably over the next 5 years, as it continues to grow as a result of the impact of the online retail market. It will be interesting to see what other innovations take place during this time and how this makes things more convenient for the customer.