Delivery is a defining factor of a consumer’s post-purchase experience. So let’s work out which service is the best to use.
As eCommerce in Australia grows, you can expect the number of services and maturity of these offerings to increase. In the 2020 Annual Report published by Australia Post, it is estimated that there were more than 2.8 billion items delivered to 12.3 million drop-off points across Australia. So hopefully we will see more integrated services in the near future.
Recently I talked with Jordan Harrison from Malpa 3PL on shipping services. To help some stores I’ve been talking with, I did a roundup analysis of the options out there for eCommerce stores and this is what I found.
How to choose the best shipping and mailing service for your eCommerce business?
To assess the current shipping options, I’ve used the following criteria.
A third-party courier will take over the handling of your parcels once dropped of. This means you will have no control over them until they reach the customers or the courier goes back to the company.
For this reason, find a shipping partner that you can trust and reliability is the main factor. Research has found that 96% of consumers said a good delivery experience influences their decision to repurchase from the same shop. Furthermore, 51% said they did not check out their items due to inadequate shipping options. If businesses want to establish trust and loyalty among their customers, having a quality shipping and mailing service is necessary.
Efficiency & Speed
Good delivery management enhances a company’s efficiency and helps a business focus on the other aspects of its operations. Therefore, the shipping service should be swift to avoid any unnecessary delays. Businesses that usually encounter delivery delays are likely to suffer the costs of the drop in sales and impairment of their supply chain. As most of you know, drop ship-like speeds often lead to unhappy customers.
The goal of shipping is not just ensuring that the parcel reaches the customers right on time but also making sure that the parcel does not get damaged in transit. Businesses are responsible for replacing and re-dispatch packages that get damaged during delivery, which inevitably eats up the business’s profit.
The best eCommerce shipping couriers in Australia in 2022
Australia Post is the first on the list and the most obvious place to start. Australia Post provides a full end-to-end supply chain management through its integrated logistics services and a broad range of distribution options to track and trace deliveries. It also offers courier services online and in-store through StarTrack.
Australia Post offers other services for eCommerce stores, including:
- MyPost Business for stores with volumes under 2,000 parcels a year. Users can upload orders online, pay and then print their own labels to attach to their orders which you drop off in store. It also gives discounted rates based on volume.
- eParcel for stores with volumes over 2,000 parcels a year. Get your own Australia Post platform to lodgment, shipping rate calculation and API integrations.
- Collection Points service, that allows users to receive returns via 20,000 Australia Post collection points.
- Easy Returns platform, where users can generate their own return slips and pay for postage if you choose to charge for return postage.
Australia Post has always been the most popular shipping option, especially among small businesses in the country, due to its vast retail network, even in inland areas, and their cheap pricing.
We always tell our clients that Shipping is a balance of speed, reliability and cost and we find Auspost eParcel to be the best balance of all three for most of the brands we work with currently.Jordan Harrison, Malpa 3PL
As of the 1st quarter of 2020, the base rate for sending domestic letters in Australia Post is $1.10. A 1kg parcel to be delivered within Sydney metro on the same day costs $34.95, while it costs $15.30 for a next day delivery of the same parcel. If a business is shipping a 1kg parcel across states, the costs may vary between $17 to $30 depending on the chosen delivery time frame.
Overall, Australia Post’s app on the Shopify store is rated 5.0 out of 165+ reviews.
Aussie-based Sendle aims to be carbon neutral, but it has some other benefits going for it too. Sendle has two features that make it convenient – free pickup, and a Shopify integration (read the guide here). The Shopify integration allows you to connect with your existing Sendle account and imports postage updates on your orders processed with Sendle. You can also add Sendle’s shipping options for checking out.
Prices for Sendle packages are on the lower-end. They start around $7.05 per 500g parcel from casual sellers, to as low as $6.85 for a carry-on sized bag up to 25kg sending in the same city.
Reliability for Sendle is mixed. Most reviews are positive however some complain of late payments and the difficulty navigating the chat and ticket support.
Sadly, the Sendle app reviews on Shopify are below average, as users have not been able to connect to Sendle to troubleshoot issues. The app itself is developed by a third-party and not operated by Sendle themselves.
3. DHL Express
DHL has established its reputation as the global market leader in the logistics industry. It was founded in the US in 1969 and has expanded its services worldwide since then. In 1972, DHL Express opened its first Australian office in Sydney.
DHL offers domestic and international shipping as well as other eCommerce logistics and fulfillment services. It is also relatively cheaper than other couriers, making it a good option, especially for small to medium enterprises. DHL shipping cost varies depending on the origin and destination, weight and size of the package, and the customer’s preferred delivery time frame. Customers can use this DHL shipping calculator to compute costs.
You can use their Ship Now page to book a courier service online.
Feedback from the Shopify community has been positive, however some people have reported that DHL itself is not fully across their integration just yet.
The official DHL plugin is rated 4.4 out of 90+ reviews.
4. FedEx Australia (International Courier)
Federal Express Corporation (FedEx) was originally established in Tennessee, US. FedEx takes pride as the largest airline in the world in terms of flyable freight tons. FedEx also ranked 9th in the world in fleet size with371 mainline aircraft.
Last May 2016, FedEx acquired TNT Express – an international courier delivery service company founded in Australia. The acquisition merged the two biggest air express networks making it one of the best solutions for businesses that are struggling with international shipping.
eCommerce businesses can use FedEx’s rate tool to know the price for a specific shipment. Shipping costs may vary depending on the shipment’s origin, destination, delivery time frame, packaging, and weight.
Aramex Australia was formerly known as Fastway Couriers before Aramex purchased it in January 2016. This shipping courier links customers and business owners through a trustworthy and affordable parcel delivery service in and out of Australia. Aramex is considered a lower-cost option when compared to the other shipping providers.
In June 2020, Aramex partnered with ShipStation, the world’s leading web-based eCommerce shipping solution, to further expand its delivery services, especially among eCommerce retailers. The partnership will also allow merchants to access the Aramex Australia offerings, including Aramex’s Parcel Connect Service, which enables parcel drop-off and pick-up at various partner stores and petrol stations.
CouriersPlease is a subsidiary of one of the largest eCommerce logistics companies in Asia-Pacific and the United States, Singapore Post (SingPost). CouriersPlease aims to be of service to Australians with its independently owned franchise fleet. What started as a metropolitan parcel delivery business, CouriersPlease recently launched its international services, allowing customers to send packages to over 220 countries.
The price of domestic delivery by CouriersPlease ranges between $8.25 to $18.25 depending on the destination and parcel size. The international courier quote prices also vary depending on the location, size, and delivery time frame.
6. Pack & Send
Pack & Send is a franchise logistics provider. They are offering services for eBay and eCommerce sellers, where you can book your service online, pay, print your own labels and then drop off your parcel for shipping.
Choosing the right shipping and mailing service for your eCommerce business can be tricky because you can’t really know until you try them. For this list, I’ve given you an overview of the ratings and my personal experience with each courier. To really take action, you’ll need to narrow down a list of 2-3 and do a few test runs.