e-commerce growth signal strong demand for efficient delivery services
This year more South African consumers than ever are expected to swop busy shopping centre queues for the cart and checkout feature of their favourite e-commerce sites as Black Friday largely goes online.
In May 2020, data and insights company Nielsen found that 65% of South Africans shopped less at physical supermarkets while, among existing online shoppers, 29% increased their online shopping and 21% continued as before.
According to Mike Farquharson, Managing Director of online courier aggregator Rush, an Ocean on 76 Group company, there is a unique opportunity for South Africa’s e-commerce players, particularly smaller retailers, to win over consumers through fast and efficient customer service. “As confidence in online shopping increases so too does the need for flexible and convenient courier services to meet and exceed shoppers’ expectations.”
The delivery requirements of smaller businesses are constantly evolving as savvy consumers expect seamless, exceptional service from placing an order to final delivery. “The Rush platform provides the power of choice and enables customers to use a quick and efficient courier service, whether you’re an individual, a small business, or a large corporate,” says Farquharson.
In today’s digital age, delivery services have become essential to how modern businesses operate. Chamaine Pelser, Sales Manager at The Courier Guy, a Rush partner, says choosing a reliable courier is an important means of establishing trust between a business, irrespective of size, and the consumer. “The courier performs the last mile of the customer journey. A late delivery could ruin the entire experience regardless of the quality of service until that point.”
Pelser says building a relationship with a courier company that understands the unique needs of small businesses is vital, especially during busy periods like Black Friday. “We take historical information from previous years and ensure that we have delivery capacity to handle a 20 to 30% growth over the Black Friday period.” She adds that the Rush platform allows small businesses an unsurpassed choice of couriers based on service and rates. “A courier company really is the distribution arm of the seller and needs to enhance the service and never have a negative impact on the customer experience.”
After a difficult year, South African shoppers looking to capitalise on good deals shouldn’t be disappointed by a substandard delivery service says Farquharson. “Rush allows businesses to focus on their core strengths and build their brands without the hindrance of worrying about the distribution of their products. Our trusted network of courier partners, like The Courier Guy, ensures delivery in the most quick, efficient and cost-effective way possible.”