Online Shopping Increases Demand for Locker Solutions
January 5, 2016
Lockers are being integrated into online shopping to further enhance its convenience and security. You might think, what could be more convenient than having your packages delivered directly to your home, simply a day or two after a few clicks on the web? It only takes the order of a couple of oversized packages, before the pitfalls of the system become apparent.
Online shopping without locker solutions
When packages are too large for the letter box and you’re not in, one of three things usually happens:
One – Your package gets left with a neighbour. That can work, but we are not all blessed to live next to reliable, friendly and trustworthy neighbours.
Two – Your package gets left outside your door. Not all of us have large porch ways with the required crevices to effectively hide a package however. And in some neighbourhoods, items left on display are likely to attract the attention of opportunistic thieves.
Three – Your package gets taken to the delivery company’s nearest collection point. At this point, your simple online order has become anything but convenient. It’s become an errand, exactly what you were trying to avoid in the first place.
Of course some nationwide retail chains offer collection at a local store, but for other online businesses, that solution is not available and is where the introduction of lockers is coming to the fore. Locker solutions provide an alternative collection method to ensure a customer’s online shop stays easy and doesn’t become a hassle.
Amazon Lockers are the most widespread example of this at the moment. Amazon allows customers to pick an Amazon Locker location for their parcel delivery, and sends a code by email, which allows the customer to safely collect the parcel at their leisure anytime in the next three days.
This solution allows customers to work it into their daily schedule – perhaps choosing a locker that is on their route home. To give you an idea of the practicality of the service, from my location in North London, there were two different locker stores within a radius of less than a mile. Outside of London the options are more limited – but shopping centres are being targeted as suitable locations by Amazon.
The service will only grow stronger with the introduction of more locations. Amazon is not the only online retailer offering this service, with other companies such as Walmart in the US offering a similar service.
Lockers for offices?
In the UK however, it is not just the online retailers themselves starting to use the locker system for packages, but also large companies with lots of employees. See, one other delivery solution for many working people is to use their work address for deliveries rather than their home. But for large companies, this can overload the front desk or the mail room.
Companies such as Royal Bank of Scotland, Aviva and British Gas have started to install delivery lockers for their employees. Employees can pick up the delivery at their leisure instead of large packages cluttering reception or being delivered to desks.
This would be an incredibly powerful solution for companies who also take advantage of biometric technology, the kind that BioStore offer. Biometric lockers add an extra level of convenience, security and flexibility to the solution.
Employees would only need to do a quick scan of their fingerprint to confirm their identity and use the delivery company’s code to get into the locker and retrieve their package. It couldn’t be easier, but is also extremely secure. No one can spoof their fingerprint and get into their locker and packages unauthorized.
A biometric solution would also make the lockers extremely easy to reassign. Not every employee would have to have their own locker at all times. But they could be activated as and when they are needed. It would be such a simple and versatile solution for packages, and simple from a user point of view. Employees would use the same finger print scan they use to enter the building, purchase food in the staff canteen, use the office printer, or any other biometric office solution that has been integrated into their work place.