Review of Domestic Courier Services for eCommerce Businesses
Ever since we started with Zepo and even before that, we have dealt with courier companies in India on a first hand basis. And we have had agonizingly frustrating experiences with some.
Logistics is to ecommerce what queues are to retail stores! The longer the wait, the more frustrated a customer!
The courier company making your deliveries is your first and the most important point of contact with your customer, and you sure as hell don’t want to mess that up! It makes for some major disappointment when you get a call from a customer complaining about the state and time of deliveries made. And that is why we thought to review some of the popular domestic courier options in India, particularly for ecommerce businesses. This review comes from our experience and the experience of our store owners. We have rated each courier service on the basis of 5 major criteria you think upon before choosing which one to go with.
- Serviceable area
- Delivery times
- Pick up facility
- Track Shipment
To put it in a more visually appealing way, here is an infographic of the review. You can find a more detailed review of all the courier services, below the infographic.
Blue Dart trumps the market when it comes to service. Although it is a shade more expensive than most players in the market, their service has only been paralled by India Post. From providing the best, quickest and most reliable deliveries pan-India, Blue Dart has a vast serviceable area. So at the end of the day, even if Blue Dart is slightly more expensive, they are well worth it.
a.Pick Up facility: 7/10
b.Rates: 6/10 | Approx. Rs. 55 – 75/500gms, depending on serviceable area
c.COD: 7/10 | Approx. Rs. 80 or 3% of the invoice value, whichever is higher
f.Track shipment: 8/10 PS. The rates mentioned above are extended especially to Zepo users. The rates may differ as well as their policy or minimum commitments for others.
DTDC is a franchise model, which necessarily means that although all shipments go through the DTDC network, there is no standard rating that would apply to all DTDC channel partners. A better call would be to check out for yourself the rates and performance of DTDC in your sector and be the better judge. DTDC does offer higher rates than other private solutions and untimely deliveries and loss of shipments are some of the common problems.
a.Pick Up facility: 5/10
d.Deliverable Area: 5/10
Although Aramex provides one of the best logistics solutions for ecommerce ventures, somewhere along the line they haven’t delivered as much as they promised. An amateur looking them up for availing their logistics support, will find all his needs satisfied. But more often than not, people have burnt their hands with Aramex, due to irregular and untimely deliveries, loss of packages and delay in account settlement in cases of COD.
a.Pick Up facility: 6/10
b.Rates: 7/10 | Approx. Rs. 60/ 500gms, depending on the deliverable area
c.COD: 6/10 | Min. charge of Rs. 75/ 500 gms or 4% of the invoice value, whichever is higher
d.Deliverable Area: 7/10
f.Track shipment: 5/10
Nope, you didn’t read it wrong. India Post does offer one of the most competitive logistics solutions and they top it up with one of the most expansive serviceable areas. India Post offers an EPP service which works out best for small businesses and entrepreneurs sending consignments all across India which weigh less that 35 kg. Pickup facility is offered free of cost for all consignments weighing less than 35kg, under this scheme. Though their rates are on par with other private players, their good service and domestic reach make it worth it.
a.Pick Up facility: 7/10
b.Rates: 7/10 | Rs. 30-90/ 500gms Depending on the distance from your location
c.COD: 7/10 | Offered as VPP and the charges applicable are Rs. 25/ order
f.Track shipment: 9/10
5.FedEx for domestic deliveries
FedEx India offers two reliable domestic services, FedEx® Priority Overnight and FedEx® Standard Overnight. Both these services are backed by the international service characteristics of FedEx:
- Priority Overnight (PO): For all your documents and parcels (value < INR 5,000)
- Standard Overnight (SO): For all your commercial shipments (value > INR 5,000).
That said, FedEx does not have the same extensive coverage pan India like its competitors, though it can boast of good service in the areas it does service. Also, the same FedEx account can be used for domestic as well as international deliveries. Although their prices maybe a little steep, you can get them to drop prices upto 60-70%.
a.Pick Up facility: 7/10 | Approx. Rs. 200 on waybill
b.Rates: 6/10 | On an average, Rs. 32 – 72/kg or Rs. 70 – 148/kg, depending upon serviceable area and type of service
c.COD: 6/10 | Approx. Rs. 250 on waybill amount
f.Track shipment: 8/10
First Flight has a long-standing established name as a courier service. But when it comes to using their services for ecommerce businesses, the domestic rates offered are considerably higher than what other logistics partners are offering. Speaking of their service, alot of ecommerce businesses have switched to better services after their customers complained about untimely and bad state of the deliveries. First flight offers COD as a value added service and you can request for a pickup online.
a.Pick Up facility: 5/10
b.Rates: 6/10 | Rs. 50-210/250 gms depending upon the zone of delivery
f.Track shipment: 6/10 Other logistics service providers worth a mention are TNT, Deccan, Maruti Courier. They have better performance in certain specific areas, and you would like to ask around about them.
PS. All price quotes mentioned above are completely and absolutely subjective to the number of packages, the amount of transactions and the place you’re situated in. All prices quoted are a mere ballpark figure. They can be greatly negotiated or be higher than this depending on individual needs and requirements. The infographic was first published on Trak.in
In the process of finalising your logistics provider? Start your online store with Zepo and start your shipments with FedEx, Gati and Dotzot all under one roof. What are you waiting for?