Following the enormous growth in online shopping, Yodel, the UK’s largest parcel delivery company, is to make alterations to its service to meet consumer service demands and match the ever increasing need for flexibility.
The changes being adopted will see Yodel move to a six day a week service, increasing to seven days during December, with the removal of premium charges for weekend deliveries, and standard pricing across the UK, including highlands and islands.
Clients will also enjoy enhanced service level commitments with Yodel investing in a programme of extended training, including earlier engagement of seasonal temporary staff to ensure peak performance and improved customer service.
Shoppers will receive email and SMS delivery updates as standard, including time slot advice and be able to track their parcel using a simplified, customer-friendly online service. Any additional queries can be answered by making a free call to Yodel’s customer services, as the current charges are dropped.
The company is also looking at significantly extending the number of CollectPlus outlets (its joint venture with PayPoint), and is exploring opportunities to allow all customers to nominate their local store as a second delivery point if the initial attempt fails.
Recent figures from Boston Consulting Group suggest the internet accounted for £121 billion of UK GDP last year – or around 8.3 per cent. The research suggested this will grow further to £225 billion by 2016, while the proportion of retail transactions carried out online will hit 23 per cent by the same date.
The new offering marks a change in focus for Yodel, which has already invested significantly in its IT and physical infrastructure to keep pace with the expanding market.
"We’ve reviewed our performance, listened to consumer demand and responded," commented Yodel’s CEO, Jonathan Smith.
"As the internet shopping market grows so do the demands on our service. With online promotions and peak periods on a weekly and seasonal basis, we are increasingly required to flex, in some cases handling up to eleven times normal parcel volume, and this is a trend that is only set to increase.
"In order to ensure best customer service while maintaining a scale of flexibility, which no other carrier is currently able to offer, we recognise the need to change the way we work and invest more in the aspects of our business that impact the consumer."
"Inevitably these changes will come at a price and we must pass on our reasonable costs. We believe that all parties, once they recognise the benefits that this will provide, will accept the changes as a necessary shift for all involved."
Although exact tariffs for specific retailers will be discussed with them individually, Yodel believes that the explosive growth in internet shopping has led to the delivery market reaching saturation point. Without an increase in charges, carriers will be unable to invest in the kinds of services and product offerings that will support internet commerce in its next phase of growth.