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Two-hour on-demand delivery platform has arrived

Think two-hour delivery is years away for Australian retailers? Wrong. It’s already on offer and customers are ready and willing to pay extra for the service.

Despite some reports suggesting the service won’t be widely available for another decade, eDelivery just launched its on-demand two-hour delivery platform this year, using cutting-edge technology and Uber-style crowdsourcing.

“The technology is a world-first. It’s super fast, it costs under $8 an order and from the moment the customer places the order online, it takes two hours to have it delivered to them with our 24/7 delivery service,” says eDelivery CEO Carl Popovic.

Here’s how it works

1. Customer makes an order online.
2. The order is directed to the closest location to be picked, packed and labelled within 45 minutes.
3. Once the order is ready for delivery, it’s directed to eDelivery for collection through its IT platform that is integrated with the retailer’s.
4. The order is then directed to the private driver network, a crowdsourced network of self-employed drivers who are fully compliant and trained.
5. The app technology selects the most suitable delivery vehicle of the order. Orders are batched for delivery every 15 or 30 minutes, depending on their size.
6. A notification is issued to the closest driver. Driver accepts the order via the app and is directed to the store, where he/she scans each parcel and confirms delivery.
7. With delivery underway, drivers are given the most direct and quickest path for multiple collections and deliveries.
8. Customers are given a 10-minute advance SMS delivery notice.
9. At each delivery point, the driver obtains proof of delivery signature, then goes onto the next delivery.

What customers want

Even in the past couple of years, consumer expectations have skyrocketed, particularly in terms of delivery, according to PwC’s 2018 Global Consumer Insights Survey. Nearly a quarter of respondents said they would be influenced to buy from a particular retailer if they offered fast or reliable delivery. More than 40 per cent of online shoppers said they would pay extra for same day delivery or for the option to receive their packages within a one or two-hour window of their choosing.

“When retailers are up against the likes of Amazon who have excellent delivery services, it’s essential that they can compete with a similar offering,” Popovic says. “Customers don’t want to wait for their purchases for a week or two anymore. It’s just not good enough.”

Two-hour delivery is particularly useful for retailers in the liquor, chemist, grocery, office supplies, hardware, telco or fast fashion categories. Shoppers who go online to fulfil a prescription don’t want to wait for antibiotics in two or three days’ time, neither do those planning to stock up on bubbly for a party they’re hosting tonight.

At the moment, eDelivery is in talks with department stores, major electronics retailers and chemists to roll out the service.

“In today’s world, it’s extremely important to be able to use a crowdsourced environment to complete the delivery process. It’s on-demand, it’s cost-effective, it’s efficient, it’s compliant – it basically ticks all the boxes in order for us to fulfil a two-hour delivery service,” says Popovic.

“It’s time that Aussie retailers step up their game and give customers what they want.”

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