The crazy business of home delivery

At home, it was already Christmas in October. In Bordeaux, during our visit to the Cdiscount warehouse, Halloween was not over as piles of PlayStations and Playmobils were already waiting for their time on the shelves. At the same time, DHL’s management was preparing to recruit 400 seasonal workers to transport up to 260,000 packages a day. At Showroomprive.com, little hands finally prepared the descriptions of the hundreds of offers on toys, bags and other gifts to put online. “Since the start of the school year, the logistics teams have also been quite busy! smiles the head of the site, Thierry Petit. We need to validate with our carriers how many trucks and couriers we need each week. “These delivery professionals played big because the French order millions of packages during the holidays …

At Christmas, as in high summer, getting deliveries has become a national reflex. At Deliveroo we order dishes from the restaurant next door. At Alibaba, we buy smartphones shipped from China. In France, more than 505 million packages were delivered (or returned) in 2017, according to Fevad. That’s 10.5% more than in 2016. A boom that closely follows e-commerce. According to the Kantar World panel, online sales of physical goods (excluding food) increased by a further 11% in 2017 to 30 billion euros. A phenomenon that affects all ages and the entire territory. “The progression of delivery that has stalled in relation to e-commerce has no reason to slow down,” assures David de Matteis, at OC & C Strategy. On the contrary, the new generation of buyers was born with a smartphone in hand . »

Number of packages, sales figures … the crazy numbers for home delivery


This change in consumption is disrupting our entire society. A culture of “I want everything, instantly, effortlessly” is spreading, our cities need to evolve to support the ballet of vans, and all our businesses are shaking … Even our food distributors, who are still spared, are getting ready. E.Leclerc has just launched its own offer in Paris, Auchan has invested in a huge stock, Monoprix has even entrusted its Express service to the big bad Amazon …

>> In video: a former Amazon employee condemns the massive destruction of products

But this revolution is based on a sacred misunderstanding. In many sectors, delivery is popular with customers … because they are not really charged for it! “We do not have the Anglo-Saxon culture of paid service,” says Olivier Dauvers, distribution expert. Result ? Large surfaces can multiply the tricks to limit fractures, they often lose money. Startup companies that deliver meals go bankrupt one after the other … Even the troll Amazon would calm down. “According to our estimates, it generates no profit or very little,” says David de Matteis. But that is not his primary goal: he, like the others, will first capture as many customers as possible. To better get them to pay later?

>> Find our complete file on ingenious strokes and dirty tricks for home delivery:

Online shopping: tips from brands to get you banged

Amazon, CDiscount … the spectacular innovations in their department stores

Deliveroo, Uber Eats … always more customers without earning a penny

Chronopost, private packages … the infernal speeds of their dealers

Connected locks, package returns … the innovative companies created by the explosion of home delivery

Traffic jams, pollution … the secondary damage during home delivery

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