Express operator DPD is to make its one-hour timeslot service, Predict, free of charge for all retailers.
It launched the service in March 2010 and reckons that so far it has generated over £50m in new business. It currently sends out a million Predict messages each month advising people when to expect their parcel. Until now, retailers have been charged up to 10p to cover the cost of texting customers.
The service uses GPS tracking technology to provide customers with a one-hour delivery window. A text message or email is sent to customers giving a precise one-hour window for delivery. The customer can then either accept the one-hour window or reply to the message to rearrange the delivery.
DPD says the service has been responsible for improving retailers “right first time” delivery rates on average by ten per cent nationally.
Chief executive Dwain McDonald said: “The service is responsible for generating more than of £50m of new business for DPD. The feedback from retailers has been fantastic as Predict provides tangible benefits for both retailers and their customers. By making the service free of charge we aim to increase the take-up still further. In the last two years Predict has consistently been the single biggest reason given by retailers for switching to DPD.”
* Yodel is set to increase its prices, in order to support its move to a six day a week service to meet the needs of the growing online shopping market.