Buydirect4u sold on Parcelhub’s ability to deliver: eCommerce shipping case study
Online retailer Buydirect4u has been enjoying business success and growth since it was formed in 2005. However, as the company grew and its requirements became more complex, Buydirect4u needed an efficient logistics partner to meet its ambitious delivery needs.
Part of Charles Bentley & Son Ltd, the £28 million turnover manufacturer, importer & online retailer sources home, garden, DIY, toys, games, and sports and leisure products directly from the manufacturers and supplies directly to the public.
After 10 years of growth, Buydirect4u moved into a new 202,000 sq ft warehouse and it currently has a portfolio range of over 2,000 products. The company shipped over 250,000 parcels out to 31 countries in 2016 and supplies to three large retailers in the UK including Tesco, Homebase & Robert Dyas. It employs 195 people, and has plans to grow its market share in the EU and expand its product portfolio.
Tailor made solution
Prior to working with Parcelhub, Buydirect4u utilised an alternative supplier which could not offer a carrier management solution to match the innovative integrated system which Parcelhub has created. After several months of consultation, which involved a thorough review of Buydirect4u’s internal systems, Parcelhub presented a tailor made solution to fit with the retailer’s needs. This was the beginning of Parcelhub’s working relationship with Buydirect4u in 2012.
Four and a half years down the line, Parcelhub now processes and ships in excess of 21,000 items a month for Buydirect4u via the Parcelhub integrated shipping management platform; items shipped range in size from 100 grams to 1,000 kilos and can be anything from an envelope to pallets, ‘leave safe’ and delivered with a signature. Most items are despatched on one of Parcelhub’s direct carrier contracts but the flexibility of the software allows a number of Buydirect4u’s own contracts to be utilised also.
Cost saving is just one of the key benefits to Buydirect4u. Thanks to the integration of Parcelhub’s customer services team within Buydirect4u’s own systems and processes, the company saves on the cost of employing extra staff.
Andrew Steel, founder of Buydirect4u and head of eCommerce, said: “We would have to employ at least two additional customer service advisers of our own to manage the carriers. That’s a big saving to a business like ours. We really do see Parcelhub as an extension of our own business, and we have spent the last 12 months further integrating the Parcelhub customer service team to create more efficiencies and strengthen our proposition.”
Parcelhub’s eCommerce customer service team proactively deals with over 1,600 tickets raised automatically via its SMART platform each month. Tickets are raised into the department based on a set of rules configured across all carriers and services on behalf of Buydirect4u including some carriers not directly contracted by Parcelhub. The system is configured to raise an automated ticket based on a set of rules after a certain scan event or a series of scans indicate there may be a problem with the delivery.
Streamlined customer services
Andrew Steel added: “As our business grew we liked the idea of having just one system to monitor and track parcels. Parcelhub provided their software to manage multiple portals to enable this to happen and streamline our customer services operation.”
Managing Director at Parcelhub, Mark Rosenberg, said, “It’s important to the Parcelhub team that we get under the skin of our clients and understand exactly what their requirements are. Sometimes it can be a requirement they didn’t realise, and that we can provide a solution for.
This is an ongoing part of what we offer in so much as our dedicated account management team meets regularly with Buydirect4u to discuss developments and innovations across the industry including logistics, technology, customer experience and carrier solutions.
“Andrew makes an important point when he sees Parcelhub as an extension of Buydirect4u. Having worked closely together for nearly five years, our two businesses collaborate ensuring a free flow of information in terms of technological advances, new delivery solutions, price changes and enhancements. For Buydirect4u to succeed, we have to succeed. Trust and capabilities are two vital components which contribute to that success.”
Parcelhub is a flexible and scalable eCommerce and wholesale parcel shipping solution, which distributes more than 4 million parcels annually on behalf of hundreds of start-ups, omnichannel retailers and wholesalers.
Sister company Mail Workshop is one of Europe’s leading Print and eCommerce fulfilment providers, working with brand managers, advertising agencies, publishers and printers to provide product and print matter storage, fulfilment and distribution.