In 1878 an international parcel post system was established by the Congress of the Universal Postal Union. Parcel post simply refers to packages being sent through a mail service as opposed to the current use of a courier delivery service.
In the beginning, the parcel post system wasn’t very popular, as rural residents had to retrieve their mail from post offices that would be miles away. If they didn’t want to travel to the post office, then the only alternative was to pay private express companies for delivery, which wasn’t an option for most households.
In October 1896, free delivery of mail to rural households was established. This led to an increase in delivered packages containing items that weren’t easily available to farmers.
In the first five days of 1913, over 4 million parcel post packages were handled. The increase in demand was great for the economy and paved the way for mail-order businesses.
These days there is a multitude of courier delivery services to choose from. But picking the right service for you and your business can be tricky. So, keep reading to find out more about the seven questions you need to ask your potential courier delivery service before hiring them.
1. How Long Have You Been in Business?
While there is nothing wrong with going into business with a newer service, shipping and delivery services need to have effective logistics in place. This question won’t be the question you make a decision over, but it opens the floor for questions regarding how they’ll handle your business. You need to make sure they have the needed logistics in place and that they’ve considered all the processes they need to handle your order.
2. Are Your Drivers Reliable?
While this isn’t the exact phrasing you’ll use when asking this question, you need to find out how reliable their drivers are. Without reliable drivers, your packages won’t be delivered on time and can cause drastic delays.
Some things to look out for include:
- Are the vehicles in good condition?
- Do the drivers wear a uniform?
- Do the drivers have insurance through the company in case of an emergency?
- Do the drivers seem professional to you?
While it is possible to find a fantastic courier service that doesn’t tick these boxes, as looks can be deceiving, a good first impression is a sign that care is put into how the drivers present themselves.
3. What’s the Size of the Fleet?
You need to consider the size of your courier’s fleet when you hire a courier service. If you’re planning on shipping a moderate or large amount of packages monthly, it’s important to find out if there are enough vehicles to meet your needs; otherwise, you’ll probably end up dealing with delayed orders.
4. What’s Your Pricing Like?
While there are many factors to consider when choosing a courier delivery service, the price can make or break the deal. If the courier service is out of your budget, it doesn’t matter that they’re the perfect fit in every other aspect.
While enquiring about the current prices, you should also ask how long you would be locked into this pricing agreement. Pricing increases are a given, but it’s important to know for how long the price you’re quoted will be valid.
5. How Are Your Shipments Protected?
Accidents happen, and things break. But it’s important to find out what steps the courier service takes to ensure your package is protected. It’s also important to ask if they have insurance against damage caused during handling.
6. What Types of Guarantees Do You Provide?
When looking at a potential package shipping partner, it’s important to ask them what happens if they don’t meet their guaranteed delivery times. It doesn’t matter that they promise same-day shipping if they can’t consistently deliver on it. Finding out what happens if they can’t follow up on their guarantees will tell you a lot about the business overall.
If they have a proven track record and can give you concrete examples of what they do if they don’t meet their agreed delivery times, you can trust that they’ll do everything in their power to honor the agreement.
7. How Important Is Customer Service to You?
If you’re looking for the best courier delivery service, you need to take a look at their customer service. Some things to consider:
- Can you easily get in touch with them?
- Can you be put in contact with the driver?
- What hours are they available, and does it match my working hours?
- Do they keep you updated regarding any delays or issues?
- How do they handle issues that pop up with a delivery?
When picking a courier delivery service, you need to find out how interactions between you and the company will go. If you need quick answers and your chosen courier company takes 2-3 days to reply, then your needs aren’t being met.
It is important to pick a courier service that understands that customer service is the key to providing exemplary client service.
Pick Your Courier Delivery Service
Taking the time to thoroughly vet your potential courier delivery service provider can save you not only time and money but also a lot of frustration in the long run. The courier service you use will make an impact on your own timeframe, so make sure to ask all these questions above before you make your decision.
If you need a reliable delivery service, then 10-21 Sunrise is the delivery service for you. We even offer same-day and overnight courier services for time-sensitive shipments and deliveries.
Contact us to learn more about our local courier services in the Ottawa-Gatineau region.