- 3 August 2017
- Transport / Logistics Services
The UK postal and delivery sector regulator Ofcom has shown in its latest Communication Market Report that while the total addressed letters volume fell by 4% between 2015-16, 88% of people say that they value the option to use the postal service.
According to Ofcom the decline in letter volumes “was driven by a 9% decline in Royal Mail’s end-to end letter volume, to 4.7bn items, which accounted for 40% of total letter volumes in 2016″.
Royal Mail is most prized by the older generation. 82% of 16-24 year olds said they valued being able to use the post, rising to 85% in 25-44, 91% between ages 45-64, 93% among the 65-74 group and 97% among those over 75 years old.
Letters delivered by other operators than Royal Mail have risen from 9 million in 2011 to 16 million in 2016, while the direct mail share of total advertising spend has declined from 11.4% to 8%.
2015 was the only year that Ofcom reported parcel volumes and these were 1.6 billion pieces.
In its analysis of the UK’s parcel market, Ofcom noted that: “Online activity continues to drive developments in e-commerce and delivery networks.”
Ofcom noted that “price is the consumer’s main concern”, with more than 50% of online shoppers not completing orders online because “delivery charges were too high”.
While most people still say that their first preference is for home delivery, about half have used a click and collect service to pick up their order in a store. Twelve per cent said they had had a purchase delivered to a parcel shop, 11% to a post office, and 6% said they had had a delivery made to a parcel locker.
UK consumers are now more aware of faster delivery options and Ofcom noted that: “More than half (55%) of adults have used next day delivery, 14% have used same-day delivery, and 4% have used within-the-hour delivery.”
But – as many independent reports have noted – consumers are often more interested in free, or at least cheap, delivery, than they are in fast delivery. According to Ofcom: “The relatively limited use of same-day and within-the-hour delivery may also reflect consumers’ unwillingness to pay a premium for delivery.”
On page 224 of the report, Ofcom relays the findings of a survey in which adults who had received one or more parcels in the past month were provided with a list of companies and asked from which of these they had received a parcel delivery.
Ofcom noted: “More than eight in ten (83%) said that Royal Mail had delivered a parcel(s) to them, while just over a quarter (27%) had received one or more from Hermes. A further five companies had delivered a parcel(s) to between 10% and 20% of those who had received one: Yodel (19%), Amazon Logistics (17%), DPD (16%), Parcelforce (13%) and DHL (12%).”
Subscribe to Newsletter