Why Courier Shipping Services Are More In Demand This Year

Did you know that, among shipping services, couriers specifically have experienced great success over the past few years? We also believe they are one of the least understood modes of shipping.

Courier service is one of the most personalized modes of delivery and, therefore, one of the most reliable. It is also commonly used for local deliveries–especially in larger cities, where a hand-delivery could take up to half a day

You might say that couriers do their work right in front of our eyes without us even noticing. Perhaps that’s one reason for their popularity. And that’s what we’ll discuss in this article.

Shipping Services vs. Courier Services

It might be surprising to learn that UPS and FedEx, common household names, rank highest among those offering courier service, along with the U.S. Postal Service.

This is because all three also offer shipping as well as courier services. This is one reason why there is a fine line between shipping and courier services. We’ll try to sort this out now.

What is Shipping Service?

Shipping is a very encompassing term, referring to the “process of transporting an item, usually through the mail. Shipping is a very basic, common way of getting an item from one place to another, or from one person to another.”

Shipping services deliver both parcels (smaller packages weighing less than 70 pounds) and freight (200-10,000 pounds).

What is Courier Shipping Service?

What is a courier? This is somewhat more complicated. With courier service, an individual delivery person is responsible for carrying out the exchange of items between two or more parties.

Couriers are usually employed by companies that charge a flat rate to the party shipping a given item.

There are two main types of courier service:

Standard Local Courier Service

Commonly used by businesses, local courier service involves the local delivery of an item by an individual courier. This might be, for example, a confidential document of an office machine part needed for a timely repair.

Since this category also includes rush and on-demand services, it is sometimes used by individuals for urgent needs ranging from delivery of documents to emergency medical supplies.

In such situations, items might be handed off to a major carrier for expedited long-distance shipping and then delivered by a different local courier at its destination.

Local couriers also pick up and deliver luggage for airline and other mass transit passengers.

Regional Couriers

Also known as regional parcel carriers or delivery services, are hybrid shipping companies and local courier operations, with services such as overnight delivery and warehousing–sometimes even freight handling.

International Courier Service

Several shipping services deliver both freight and parcels overseas. However, courier services that specialize in international delivery will offer the best rates.

They will pick up the parcel at your location and hand it off to one of their international carrier partners. Then a local courier will deliver it to its destination.

International couriers have special expertise and certain advantages when it comes to international deliveries–for example, better connections with port authorities, ability to acquire permits, and tax discounts.

Regional and local courier services in the U.S. consist of air transit services, ground deliveries and other services including messengers and local deliveries. Couriers specialize in the delivery of envelopes and parcels, not items over 100-150 pounds.

While technically not courier businesses themselves, Federal Express, UPS, DHL, and the USPS all employ couriers to hand-deliver expedited mail and packages.

Recent Demand for Courier Services

Over 50% of online businesses plan on providing same-day delivery in the next 3-5 years. And 18% of consumers say fast delivery is the biggest factor in choosing their favorite store.

Given that last-mile delivery by local couriers has been key to expediting deliveries, this should signal a bright future for that industry if the trend continues.

E-Commerce

It won’t surprise anyone that much of the demand for courier services today can be attributed to the nearly daily supply chain innovations of Amazon.com and e-commerce generally (led by Amazon).

Amazon puts pressure on smaller operations to keep innovating in order to both keep pace with Amazon and serve its competitors.

So, it makes sense that much of today’s demand for courier services involves B2C (business to customer/consumer) orders, which often means the delivery of items purchased locally.

Local Businesses

Small businesses are also finding ways to use courier services to save their own staff time, thereby reducing their overall expenses.

Nearly all small businesses, especially those wishing to remain independent and local, have to find ways to hold their own against Amazon!

Food Delivery

The recent proliferation of food delivery services–a form of courier service if there ever was one–has increased demand for couriers generally, because of requests of traditional couriers to deliver food (in areas not served by others)…

This is also due to the many food-delivery services that have sprung up–including UberEATS, Doordash, Grubhub, and Postmates. And it’s because of the pressure on local restaurants to beef up their own delivery operations as well.

Expanding the Taxi Niche

Uber and Lyft emerged seemingly out of nowhere around 2010 and rapidly took on the long-standing taxi industry.

Now, not only have the new shared ride services expanded their services into areas such as food and package delivery, but they’re also setting a standard for other “ad hoc” courier services. What will we see next?

Regional Carriers

Yet another factor in the flourishing of local couriers has been the growth of regional shipping and transportation companies mentioned previously, such as Winnesota above, Lone Star Overnight, and US Cargo.

Couriers and Innovation

A sort of “dog chasing its tail” scenario has come about due to couriers’ well-established need and motivation to track their deliveries.

After all, they have to both compete and collaborate with logistics “giants like UPS, FedEx, and the USPS–not to mention Amazon. So they have entered the pursuit of innovating to create even more demand for innovation.

The investment advising company Market Realist reminds us how much these technologies and the increased reach of the Internet have led to greater transparency and advanced methodologies for online tracking.

Shipments can now be tracked online from the moment of ordering through the actual delivery. It has only grown more sophisticated.

Delivered on Time!

Shipping services, including courier services, seem to have played a significant role in defining and reinforcing 21st-century needs regarding shipping logistics and consumers’ parcel-delivery expectations.

This will be an interesting industry (or group of industries) to watch over the coming years. Time will tell whether or not their current role in accelerating other businesses’ innovations will continue.

Of course, we have a stake in all this ourselves. In fact, our services span a few of the areas discussed here. Keep an eye on where and our industry generally are going by reading our blog–which we believe is a great information source!

5 Advantages of Automation in Logistics

In today’s ever-expanding Digital Era, we’re relying on technology more than ever. Businesses in all industries have started to take advantage of automated processes on every level. When it comes to shipping an logistics, there’s no exception. 

If your business relies on shipping merchandise across the country, you’re in luck. You’ve come to the right place by reading this article. Detailed below are the top five advantages of automation in the world of logistics and distribution. 

After all, making the most of these technological developments are in your best interest. You want to do everything you can to stay ahead of competitors in your niche market. 

Consider the following statistic regarding the logistics industry throughout the United States. Already in the year 2019, it’s generated $3 billion in revenue. In other words, this vast industry has a lot of ins and outs to navigate if you want to stay on top. 

1. The Efficiency of Automation Enhances Your Business’s Customer Service

When you invest in automated solutions for your business’s logistics, your customers will be grateful. The truth is, they have busy schedules and expect the delivery of their purchases to be efficient and secure. They want to feel as though your value their time and energy. 

That’s why automated logistics processes can be so beneficial for your company. By using these efficient services, you’ll establish your business as a reliable one when it comes to shipping.

In fact, if your delivery service takes too long in the eyes of customers, the consequences can be severe. These days, it’s too easy for customers to post online reviews about businesses they have experience with. These reviews can paint the business in either a positive or negative light. 

If you want to establish – and maintain – a reputation as a reliable business, you won’t take this lightly. After all, even experts recognize that customer service expectations are rising throughout the country.

Consider your investment in automated logistics as an investment in your company’s consumer loyalty. That loyalty to your brand, in the long run, is an invaluable asset. Then, they’ll be more likely to recommend your services to their friends and family members. 

2. Don’t Underestimate the Financial Advantages of Automation

Another great advantage of automation is an obvious one. You’ll save a ton of time and, therefore, money. 

For one thing, relying on paper communication is too outdated and expensive. Save the environment by digitally operating your business’s shipping and distribution, instead. 

In addition, automation simply makes business operations faster than they were in the past. That means you’ll be saving your business plenty of time on a regular basis. Since time is money, your business will experience an increase in productivity as a result. 

3. It’s Simple: Saving Time Increases Productivity

Speaking of an increase in productivity, don’t underestimate the vast difference you’ll notice with proper automation of your logistics processes. Even your employees will notice the difference with an updated solution to shipping.

After all, your employees deserve to be recognized for all of their hard work. If automated processes make their working lives easier, they’ll be grateful. Happy employees, by the way, are more productive employees. 

Plus, using the top automation means you’ll be free to worry about other responsibilities on your plate. That additional focus will allow you to strategize other areas of your business to increase profits on every level. In other words, automated logistics systems increase overall productivity in a variety of ways. 

4. Use Analytic Data To Optimize Your Operational Strategies

One of the best things about automated solutions, though, is the availability of analytical data. When you use software solutions for any part of your business, this will remain to be true. 

This is of particular usefulness, though, concerning your business’s logistics and shipping. Over time, the analytic component of automated logistics software will gather a ton of data. Then, you can evaluate that data and make more strategic decisions about the future of your business. 

For example, you can determine what products are not as popular amongst your consumer base. Perhaps, even, you can see what times of the year your business is more successful. No matter how you use that analytic data, the logistics software solution will be worth your investment. 

5. You Can Rely on Automated Proof of Delivery

The last thing to consider when it comes to automated logistics is the fact that you’ll always receive proof of delivery. Gone are the days when only priority shipments provide this feature in the form of a paper slip. Instead, your business will profit from knowing your customers are receiving their goods with electronic notifications. 

For more detailed specifics, check out this article on the benefits of electronic proof of delivery. Now, you can feel more confident that every single one of your customers is receiving the item that he or she ordered. 

Continue Investing in Your Business’s Logistics and Distribution

After reading this article, you should feel more comfortable about automating your business’s logistics processes. There are plenty of notable advantages of automation in this industry. It’s up to you, though, to make the most of these technological advancements available. 

After all, as a responsible business owner, your top priority is your company’s bottom line. You deserve the peace of mind that comes from knowing your business is optimizing its investments. This is true, in particular, when it comes to its investments in operational resources. 

That’s one reason it’s so crucial to only work with the best logistics services on the market. You don’t want to rely on a courier service that isn’t dependable, do you?

Well, that’s where we can come into play. We prioritize shipping merchandise for our clients in an efficient, reliable manner. 

For that reason, we encourage you to browse through the rest of our website to see how our experienced courier service can benefit your business and its shipping needs.

To start, check out more information about the courier and logistics services we offer on our website today. Then, keep investing in your business and its financial future with reliable shipping strategies.