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Local last-mile delivery service sees 100% uptick in service and adoption growth

According to Deloitte’s most recent Digital Commerce Acceleration reportthe growth of online shopping in South Africa is on the rise. Accompanying it, is an increasingly discerning online shopper, who chooses their online stores based on a few key features, such as low delivery costs and clear and simple return or refund policies. In fact, companies with high delivery fees and difficult to return products are more likely to have consumers heading for the hills.

According to Simon Hill, Head of Marketing at leading national courier service The Courier Guy, this presents a timely opportunity for retailers to address the current shortcomings within their current logistics supply chain, and at the same time enhance their processes and reduce the barriers to online shopping, by providing affordable, reliable and simple to use delivery options for their customers.

Enter pudo (which stands for “Pick Up, Drop Off”) – a network of smart lockers providing a solution to deliveries in the “last mile”. Since entering the South African market in 2020 under the wing of The Courier Guy, the company has experienced 100% year-on-year growth in terms of service delivery and adoption combined.

Not only are people using it in a personal capacity to deliver packages from point A to B, but the spike in online e-commerce is also seeing a rise in the number of small e-commerce businesses using pudo, as they are able to offer their customers a delivery and returns service that is value for money, convenient and ease of use.

“With pudo, people no longer have to plan their day around a delivery, as lockers are available 24/7 and located in safe, easy-to-access areas like strip malls, petrol stations and supermarkets,” says Hill. “It is also an extremely easy service to use, as the pudo app can be downloaded onto any mobile phone, funds loaded, and the desired package size selected in just a few taps.”

Making use of The Courier Guy’s team of over 2,000 drivers to affect deliveries, parcels are handled and distributed to lockers via The Courier Guy’s extensive nationwide infrastructure.

There are 1,100 pudo smart lockers located around South Africa, with locker-to-locker delivery starting at R40 for an extra small, 2kg parcel. “This makes the service affordable and within the reach of the majority,” says Hill. “Importantly, the ability to offer a multi-drop at a single location keeps prices low.”

Part of a Swiss multinational corporation, with over 70 years of experience in the logistics sector, pudo combines global expertise with a local tone and distinct South African personality, allowing it to really stand out in the marketplace. Whether you’re sending that “whatchamakalit to your boetie in Bloem”, or “that dingus to your gogo in Gugulethu”, pudo promises to be “super simple, lekker quick.”

The growth of e- commerce is exciting and has resulted in a service like pudo becoming increasingly important. Retailers can now ship cheaply, while giving their clients return and delivery flexibility and convenience,” concludes Hill.

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