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Latest Issue: May/June 17

Parcel carriers have a good online Christmas 2016

Parcel carriers have had bad Christmas periods in recent years with home delivery and click and collect problems. Unseasonably warm weather and better preparation seems to have taken delivery problems out of the headlines this year. This attention to improving customer experience seems to have extended to how they have managed their online presence too – though there is room for improvement argues web performance analytics firm Catchpoint.

In a just completed analysis of major UK parcel carriers during December and into the New Year, the data reveals that delivery companies seem to have coped well with customer traffic to their homepages. Their homepages where customers can track their deliveries have responded well to demand with no outages or serious slowdowns. However, there are some strong variations in web performance between some carriers.

Catchpoint monitored the homepages of eight carriers – DHL, DPD, Fedex, Parcel2Go, Parcelforce, TNT, UPS, Yodel – and how quickly their homepages responded and completed. The fastest were Parcelforce and Yodel in 2.5 seconds but Parcel2Go was consistently the slowest responding at 8.4 seconds. The ideal speed is 2 second to provide a completed page for the consumer to then start checking their delivery status.

Commenting on the findings Robert Castley, Senior Performance Engineer, Catchpoint said:

“None of the carriers monitored managed to break the 2 second webpage response time during the Christmas period. The homepages remained heavy over 1Mb in size and mainly due to non-optimised images for web delivery. Interestingly, Yodel, who fared well over the period have now since January 3rd swelled the size of their homepage to 8MB and seen their page load times lengthen from 2.5 seconds to 18 seconds. This demonstrates that continuous monitoring is necessary to ensure you remain on top of your game if these carriers are to deliver a great customer experience online consistently.”