UK parcel and carrier manager GFS says online retailers are putting more focus on improving their product deliveries, judging by the number of inquiries it has been receiving.
Global Freight Solutions said it has seen a sharp rise in the number of ecommerce firms seeking advice on their shipping options this year.
A “substantial number” of both small retailers and household brands were saying reliable deliveries were crucial as they looked to make the most of the current online shopping boom.
The increase in the number of online retailers approaching West Sussex-based GFS followed the company’s decision last October to make its multi-carrier delivery management software, GFS Selector, free of charge.
GFS director Simon Veale said many of the retailers coming forward have been having problems with their delivery services.
“They have been telling us that they appreciate more than ever before how effective deliveries are becoming as much a part of maintaining customer satisfaction and generating repeat business as how they actually sell their products,” he said.
GFS believes that trouble with deliveries last Christmas particularly brought the importance of problem-free delivery to retailers’ minds, though Veale said that there was also recognition that the issue of delivery reliability had year-round relevance in ecommerce.
The company’s GFS Selector can be downloaded free to allow companies to choose a range of ‘best fit’ carriers for their particular requirements. The system facilitates tracking and tracing and generates specialist carriers’ own shipping labels even if Internet connections fail.
The system allows smaller companies to use it with no ongoing charges, while larger customers pay transaction fees, but also have access to additional features including “smart-routing” and integration with ecommerce checkout systems.
Veale said some large, high volume retailers were signing up because their delivery needs were so specific they required GFS to directly manage some of their parcel deliveries on their behalf.
GFS says it currently manages millions of deliveries for companies in the engineering, financial services and leisure industries. Its software helps customers deliver and track more than 5m parcels in the UK and Ireland each year.
Back in March the company added Hermes and UK Mail to its roster of carriers, which also includes CitiPost, City Link, DHL, DPD, FedEx, Interlink Express, Nightline, Tufnells and Royal Mail.