It’s the Peak Season for Home Deliveries
Time flies and before you know it, it’s November! This month typically sees momentum growing for Christmas shopping and that means even greater volumes of home deliveries. With Black Friday a few weeks away, how can you secure the best bargains and ensure they are safely delivered?
Parcel Deliveries on the Rise
Back in 2013, approximately 1.7billion parcels and packages were processed and delivered in the UK. In the year to March 2021, that figure was up to 4.2billion.* That equates to 132 parcels being delivered every second! The primary reason behind this growth is our desire for online shopping, with the average UK adult receiving 74 parcels a year.
With Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas shopping occurring in November, this is a peak month for home deliveries. 74 parcels a year might be the average, but some can accumulate that in these final weeks until Christmas! Shoppers are looking for a bargain and online shopping makes that possible 24 hours a day.
Parcels on the Doorstep
Did you know, there are over 15,000 delivery companies in the UK? Evri (formerly Hermes) is the most popular postal service for online retailers, followed by Royal Mail, DPD, Parcelforce and DHL. With Royal Mail strikes planned for this critical weekend, the other companies will be busier than ever. What does that mean for buyers?
Once orders are placed, 62% of buyers expect next-day delivery. At peak times, it is a logistical challenge to pick, pack and ship goods to meet the demand. Even with all hands to the deck, some parcels will likely take a little longer to make it to the doorstep.
If you are not in to receive the packages, the delivery driver has minimal time to pick an option:
- Leave your parcels on the doorstep – a risky option, as your Christmas gifts and bargain buys can end up in the hands of passing opportunists.
- Leave your parcels in a designated safe place - you may have identified a safe place, but the driver doesn’t always see this information. It’s common for packages to be thrown over the gate, which might protect them from being pinched, but not from the UK weather.
- Leave a card explaining where you can collect the parcel from and take it back in the van - Online shopping is all about convenience, so it is frustrating to arrive home to discover that you have to head out to a collection point or make arrangements for redelivery.
- Post your package into a lockable parcel box – if you love online shopping, your letterbox is effectively redundant, what you need is a secure parcel box! Free-standing or wall mounted, these include wide openings for your packages, anti-theft features and secure locks. Designed to be weather-resistant and long-lasting, external parcel boxes are a practical solution.
7 Steps to Bag a Black Friday Bargain!
For every genuine Black Friday bargain, there are plenty of purchases that simply aren’t worth the money. Many retailers use this seasonal event to clear out old stock or items that aren’t selling. In addition, this is a prime opportunity for scammers, so how can you find the treasure among the trash?
- Create a wish list before you start browsing. This might now include a stylish parcel box for your deliveries! When shopping, stick to your list, so you only buy what you need and want. If possible, research items in advance.
- Set a budget, your maximum spend and, if buying gifts, a per-person budget. It’s easy to get sucked in by the deals, but important not to spend more than you can afford.
- Follow your favourite brands online and/or sign up for their newsletter. This will keep you informed about special promotions and deals. If you see something that appeals, set up an online account in advance to help streamline the purchasing process.
- The best deals are often found where retailers offer store-wide discounts like 20% off all purchases over £50. This provides the option to buy the exact items you want, which may not usually be discounted.
- Use sites including PriceSpy and Price Runner to check and compare prices of goods. This allows you to see if prices have been inflated in advance of Black Friday, so they can be marked as discounts. You can also check if other retailers are selling them at a better price.
- If you don’t see what you want, don’t settle for second best. Remember, the Boxing Day sales are just a few weeks away!
- Finally, to reduce the risk of scams, shop from reputable brands and if possible, use a credit card for online purchases. Due to the Consumer Credit Act, you have some protection if issues occur including damaged goods or lost parcels. It also helps spread the cost.
For the Love of Shopping
So, if you love this time of year for all of the shopping opportunities, get savvy, grab yourself a bargain and consider the benefits of a secure parcel box for all those deliveries!