With e-commerce booming and the holidays rapidly approaching, retail and tech giants alike are asking Santa for new ways to delight customers and increase sales. In the U.S., nearly half of all holiday shopping will be done online, according to the National Retail Federation.
With this rising demand, consumers want fast, affordable and easy deliveries. That’s why key players in e-commerce and retail are putting in every effort to revolutionize the shipping industry.
In the shipping spotlight are major brands like Walmart and Google (under its parent company Alphabet), testing aircraft drone delivery, and players like Amazon and Uber offering crowdsourced local delivery.
Let’s get one thing clear: Despite the evolving delivery game, there are certain aspects of shipping that won’t be changing any time soon. While shipping startups continue to make a dent in the industry, there will always be a reliance on the main carriers: FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service.
We’re seeing many new players test the shipping waters with local delivery, but there’s still a need to transport goods longer distances, say from San Francisco to New York, which will be harder to achieve without the network and infrastructure of one of the major carriers.
In the future, all of these new technologies fit cohesively into a package-delivery puzzle, each option working in unison to meet customer needs. Crowdsourced delivery will likely find its footing in urban areas, and drone delivery can be a useful tool in rural locations.