Kinek, the network of alternative package delivery points in North America, has signed up three more e-commerce retailers.
The Canadian company offers a network of 1,000 collection points, mostly in the US, run as franchises by the operators of local brick-and-mortar retail outlets, which allow consumers to pick up products purchased online if they cannot be at home to receive items during the day.
The firm said it has now agreed partnerships with Wyoming-based companies Sierra Trading Post and Extreme Custom Wheels, as well as California-based Monoprice, Inc., to allow their customers the Kinek collection alternative.
Kinek said the partnerships would also allow customers to shop on the e-commerce sites without having a verifiable address, those frequently on the move, and for residents living in apartment buildings that do not have concierges on hand to receive parcels.
For the e-commerce firms, Kinek said the agreements would reduce shipping costs because it is typically less expensive to deliver to a commercial address than a residential address.
And, the partnerships would allow the US firms access to Canadian consumers without incurring border crossing charges, by having packages delivered to Kinek outlets just inside the US, where Canadians can cross the border in person to collect purchases.
Jonathan Briggs, president of Wyoming-based Extreme Custom Wheels, an online retailer of automotive wheels and tyres, said: “Our products are big, heavy and high value, which drives up the cost of shipping and brokerage in Canada to the point of non-competitiveness for many items.
“Our partnership with Kinek will allow us to capture orders that are historically abandoned in shopping carts, making it convenient and cost effective to gain otherwise lost Canadian business.”
Wyoming-based Sierra Trading Post fulfills more than 6,000 orders daily, shipping more than 2.25m orders in 2011. Monoprice and Extreme Custom Wheels do not provide sales figures, but each offer “thousands” of products.
Consumers using the e-commerce websites can select a “Kinek” option for delivery while they checkout in the purchasing process. They can then track packages via the Kinek.com website or via the Kinek iPhone app.
Kinek was founded in 2001, and launched its service in the US in 2009.
Kerry McLellan, the Kinek chief executive (pictured above right), said: “E-commerce is clearly the future of retail, yet in 2012 e-tailer target markets are limited largely to those within the US who feel comfortable having packages left on their front porch. Kinek is changing all that by making ordering online safe and easy for everyone in the US and Canada.”