Courier and express delivery market posts strong growth as young men splash out on next day services

May 18, 2015
  • 94% of UK consumers have experienced courier or express delivery services in the past six months
  • The number of parcels sent is estimated to grow by 40%, to reach three billion by 2019
  • Younger males are more likely to have selected a quick delivery time, with 43% of men aged 16 to 24 having received their most recent courier or express delivery the same day or next day after ordering

As the e-commerce and online marketplaces continue to grow in importance, new research from Mintel finds that between 2010 and 2014 revenues from internal courier and express delivery services grew by an impressive 44%, while the value of deliveries destined for the international market is estimated to have increased by 32%.

Today, almost all Brits (94%) now have experience of using courier or express delivery services. Whilst 82% have received a parcel via courier or express delivery in the past six months, 25% have sent a parcel using these methods.

But for younger consumers Mintel’s research shows speed is king. Two in five (43%) men aged 16 to 24 have received their most recent courier or express delivery the same day or next day after ordering, compared to a national average of 27%. Furthermore, 23% of Brits aged 16 to 24 would be willing to pay more for same-day delivery, compared to 6% of those over 55.

Indeed, it seems currently too this demographic are more open to spend on delivery. Less than half (47%) of men aged 16-24 say they normally choose the cheapest delivery option when they order goods, compared to a national average of 55%.

94% of Brits have experience of using courier or express delivery services

Ben Harris, Senior Business to Business Analyst at Mintel, said:

“Improved economic growth boosted B2B package volumes across the year, while demand for quicker delivery times helped operators grow turnover. With parcel volumes expected to continue rising sharply in the coming years, it is crucial that operators expand capacity to process packages in greater numbers. Investment in networks and infrastructure will be key to ensuring firms are able to deliver consistently for both business and retail customers.”

“By profiling the consumer taking delivery of the parcel, operators can better target additional features and services. For example, the higher percentage of 16 to 24-year-olds willing to pay for a specific delivery time suggests that firms could increase revenues by targeting ‘in-flight’ delivery option choices towards this demographic.” Ben continues.

During 2014, the courier and express delivery market increased to a value of £7.8 billion, when 2.2 billion packages were delivered. Furthermore, Mintel’s research shows that growth looks set to continue, as over the next five years, revenues for express and courier delivery operators are expected to grow by a cumulative 39%, reaching a value of £10.8 billion in 2019. Cumulative volume growth of 40% is projected between 2014 and 2019 with the total volume of parcels reaching three billion by 2019.

Whilst younger consumers value speed, for older consumers however, safety of the package is a larger priority. Almost two thirds (63%) of those over 65 who have experience of courier and express delivery say the ability to pick a safe place for the parcel to be left if they were not at home would improve their experience when waiting to receive goods from a courier or express parcel delivery operator, compared to just 42% of 25-34s.

Moreover, while overall 50% of people suggested the ability to select an alternative safe place for delivery would improve their delivery experience, the same number (49%) indicated email alerts would improve their experience together with live parcel tracking (48%). An evening delivery option (39%) is more popular among those with experience of courier and express delivery than a Sunday delivery option (26%).

Press review copies of the Courier and Express Delivery UK 2015 report and interviews with Senior Business to Business Analyst Ben Harris are available on request from the press office.

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For the latest in consumer and industry news, top trends and market perspectives, stay tuned to Mintel News featuring commentary from Mintel’s team of global category analysts.

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