Providing delivery management information to leading retailers around the world, MetaPack is a company you may not have heard of, but there’s a big chance its services have made a massive difference to your online shopping experience. And now, thanks to a little help from HERE, MetaPack’s service is likely to be even better.
Delivery management encompasses a wide range of different services, with MetaPack offering a SaaS platform that handles everything from printing delivery labels at the retailer’s warehouse, to tracking information after customers have been shopping online. It’s a huge industry, with MetaPack working with over 400 carriers, such as FedEx, DPD and Hermes, providing access to over 4,500 carrier services. By leveraging data from all of these carriers and services, MetaPack is able to present potential delivery options for retailers in real time.
Those delivery options are dynamic and are driven by a number of parameters, such as the origin address, the customer location, the size and weight of the package, and will present various delivery types including home delivery, click and collect, and pick-up and drop-off (PUDO) networks — a delivery method that’s becoming increasingly important within e-commerce.
HERE data is used by MetaPack for resolving a destination address into a set of co-ordinates, therefore enabling location-based delivery options for the retailers, with the API providing real-time dynamic delivery options for customers. It means that when you’re buying a product online, you’ll be able to see on the retailer’s website what delivery slots or delivery locations are available, making sure your package gets to you at a time that suits you most.
Chris Hoskin, head of marketing at MetaPack, explains:
“The idea is that if a retailer or merchant is able to provide a number of different delivery options, they will be able to drive a better customer experience and will therefore sell more and have more loyal customers. Delivery is very much a defining moment in that e-commerce experience.”
“If you think of a retailer’s website, when you’ve picked a particular product and gone to the checkout, you’ll often see messages saying you can have your item by a particular date or time, or offering the ability to pay to get it sooner. The delivery option gives retailers the ability to display all of the services available to their consumers depending on location.”
Location information is handled by geocoding, with MetaPack using HERE data alongside the customer’s delivery address. “We’ll also present all the pick up points that are near that address,” adds Mathieu Jurgawczynski, senior product manager at MetaPack, and then we can essentially geocode the original address and use the database to basically look up the latitude and longitude, the location it needs to be delivered to.
MetaPack picked HERE as a partner for several reasons, Chris tells us. “We were coming from Google, and we thought that HERE offered some interesting options, not least the fact it’s supported by a number of carmarkers and tech companies.”
“The coverage that HERE offers is also a big point, as we’re looking to grow into new regions around the world, and HERE’s ability to support our growth across new regions is a key point. Performance is also important to us, and HERE offers very strong performance, which is something we were able to validate through tests, and this helped to instil more confidence.”
With MetaPack’s API visible on the websites of the retailers it works with, reliability and responsiveness are absolutely critical. Retailers are chasing conversion figures that are as high as possible, and any flaws in delivery information or the purchasing process could lead to customers looking elsewhere for the goods they want to buy.
State of eCommerce Delivery – MetaPack Consumer Research Report:
“You’d be amazed at how disloyal customers are,” says Chris, “and it’s so easy to go somewhere else if the delivery experience isn’t a good one.”
That means the information presented on websites by MetaPack and HERE needs to be accurate, responsive and consistent, making the online shopping experience better and helping customers to find a delivery location they’re happy with, along with using real-time dynamic information to pick a delivery time and day that suits their needs.
With a strong partnership between MetaPack and HERE, hopefully customers looking elsewhere once they’ve already got to point of delivery options will be a thing of the past.