What is a good courier company? 6 + 1 criteria for choosing the perfect delivery partner

06/30/2022 12:30 PM

Since delivery speed and security are both important aspects for customers when shopping online, the courier service they choose can be crucial to the success of online stores. Packeta experts, who work with thousands of local online stores, summed up in seven points what an online retailer should pay attention to, from a network of vending machines to a mobile app.

The coronavirus has given a huge boost to online shopping. In 2021, the local online retail business set a record, with a total turnover of HUF 1,203 billion. Based on GKI Digital survey data, e-commerce could already account for 10.4 percent of all retail sales, and even in 2021 it expanded at twice the rate compared to the years before Covid. In Hungary, 78.4 percent of the 6.5 million adults who use the Internet, about 5.1 million people, shop online, of which 3.7 million also buy products. No wonder more and more retailers are seeing fiction in this sector: Last year, the number of online stores increased 12 percent to more than 37,000 compared to the previous year. At the same time, there are a few points that every new online retailer should keep in mind.

1. Choose a service provider that has a nationwide network of parcel vending machines!

European trends show that fixed-point delivery is becoming more popular, which includes the use of self-service parcel machines in addition to pickup points. In addition to home delivery, courier services and retailers are increasingly paying attention to parcel machines. Since the beginning of 2021, this method of admission has undergone a massive expansion. Over 800 new parcel vending machines were put into operation in one year, and now the total number of parcel vending machines in Hungary exceeds 1250. The advantage of the machines is that they are available non-stop and as fast as if the shipping company brought the package to your home. That is why it is worth signing a contract with a courier company that offers all three ways of service (home delivery, point of receipt, parcel machine) and also has a nationwide network of machines. It is also important that the delivery partner undertakes to give immediate notice to both the recipient and the sender of the arrival and collection of the product at the vending machine.

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“Although home delivery is currently becoming more and more popular in Hungary, interest in vending machines is also rapidly increasing. A web store that does not provide this method of delivery may be left out of the competition,” said Fagyas Szabolcs, Sales Manager at Packeta Hungary Kft. Using solar powered vending machines is a more sustainable alternative to home delivery from an environmental and human resource standpoint, adding that more than 200 so-called Z-BOX self-service parcel vending machines are now in operation, and by the end of the year their number will increase to nearly than 1,000, provided that the manufacturer does not continue to have problems in the field of supply chain.

2. The parcel delivery service should be easily integrated into the online store!

Whether it is a self-developed store or template-based, a so-called “packaged” web store, it is imperative that a package delivery service is easily integrated. When choosing the right application, consider its customization options – the simpler the customization, the easier the task of the web store owner.

3. We are looking for courier companies that provide merchant and customer friendly services!

Customer satisfaction largely depends on the flexibility of the courier service. For example, providing multiple payment options is a basic requirement. Before the pandemic, card payments were fewer than cash, but the trend reversed in 2020, and the percentage of people choosing electronic payments has been increasing since then, reaching 70% last year, according to research cited by GKI Digital. Customers also appreciate the ability to return packages. Packeta, for example, provides the opportunity for the customer to return unsuitable merchandise at any of the company’s pick-up locations.

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4. Let’s look at practical solutions for courier services!

It can greatly facilitate the work of online stores if the chosen courier service helps you with practical solutions. This can be the case with a simplified, auto-generated package label: the trader has nothing else to do but print a uniquely generated label created with just a few clicks and paste it onto the package. And if we are sending a parcel outside the EU, issuing the customs declaration needed for customs clearance is also a good task if the delivery partner helps. Regarding the latter, it may be easier if helpful and competent customer service is available to fill in the advertisement correctly.

5. A modern mobile application is essential.

An increasing number of customers are ordering and tracking their orders via mobile. This is why delivery partner app, simple navigation, logical layout and quick launch are of paramount importance. For example, the Packeta application, which has already been downloaded more than three million times, allows you to return packages, open Z-BOX parcel machines, find the nearest Z-Pont collection point, and provides an overview of received and sent packages. In the application we can also find the password with which we can receive the delivered package.

6. It is also worth paying attention to the aspects of climate protection and its sustainability.

International and domestic research shows that this is becoming increasingly important for clients. That is why it is worth checking how important the selected company is to sustainability. Do you power your take out vending machines with solar panels or mains electricity? Do you use alternative packaging materials, such as biodegradable aluminum foil, and sustainable solutions instead of single-use cartons? Do you install solar panels on the roof of your warehouse buildings, do you use energy saving solutions like LED lighting in your warehouses? If so, it can contribute significantly to achieving the sustainability goals of an online store.

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+1 The international background is a great relief.

If we also want to serve foreign customers through our online store, we will need a service provider that is located in many countries and has experience in international logistics, so that we can avoid having to enter into dozens of contracts with different companies. Packeta Group, for example, is present in 6 countries and delivers its customers’ packages to more than 30 important e-commerce countries worldwide, through nearly 80 contracted delivery partners. This makes it an excellent platform for online traders with international ambitions.

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