2020 is a year that will live forever in infamy and will be remembered for many things, few of them positive. It will be remembered as the year of forest fires, grave racial injustice, catastrophic political battles and, of course, a pandemic that brought the world to its knees. But could it also be remembered as the year where delivery drivers finally got their due?
There has been a big increase in the number of deliveries in the UK due to lockdown and a massive increase in online shopping, with the market expected to have grown a remarkable 23% this year alone, which is the biggest annual increase in over 5 years. It’s estimated to be worth £13.5 billion by the end of the year and it’s only just getting started. Between 2019 and 2024 it’s estimated that the delivery market will increase by a further 92%, with over four in ten brits admitted to doing more shopping online as a result of the pandemic.
The future of delivery
With delivery drivers and parcel couriers now becoming as common a sight to us as the mailman, what wonders could the immediate future of delivery bring to our doorsteps?
Send in the drones – In the UK it might still be up there with trips to the moon, in the US, delivery drones are slowly starting to filter into everyday life. Indeed, Amazon has already begun testing a drone fleet and once that becomes mainstream, who knows who will be next to follow?
Contactless delivery – It’s become standard practice in pandemic times for couriers to leave the parcel on our doorsteps and let us know that our parcel has arrived. It’s true that in some cases, such as those where an ID is required, completely contactless delivery is impossible but in many cases, using a combination of GPS tracking and smartphone tech, many couriers now can quite feasibly spend a whole day delivering without actually seeing a customer face-to-face.
Speed and quality – With more people than ever before ordering online there is going to be a greater level of expectation placed on delivery services and delivery drivers. This is going to mean drivers will have to work faster and provide a better service if they wish to compete.
Transparency – Whereas tracking apps were once seen as a little gimmicky, now it’s become commonplace for users to track how many stops their driver has left before their parcel will be delivered. So, never again should you need to be caught in the shower or the garden when the deliveryman arrives.
Choice – Do you want your package delivered to your door or to your neighbour? Or maybe you’d prefer to have it delivered to a Dropbox at your local corner shop? And what time do you want your package delivered? The real future of delivery is in offering this choice to consumers. Because if there’s one thing consumers appreciate, it’s a choice.