The following is an excerpt from a recent interview with Marcus Hoed, co-founder of Dutch Express, a NYC based courier service. To listen to the entire conversation, you can stream or download the podcast here.
The on-demand and same day delivery market, back in the eighties and nineties, was extremely large; you saw packages, especially envelopes, going back and forth from attorneys, architects, fashion industry photoshoots you name it. At that time, E-mail didn’t really exist. However, once electronic communication became widespread, the on-demand and same-day delivery market was badly damaged.
As a result of email and other electronic communications, the amount of deliveries and messengers went down throughout the 90s… until about 5 years ago when a new trend began to emerge.
So spurred that resurgence of on-demand and same day deliveries?
We’ve entered a convenience market.
The delivery market that we’re seeing now is a result of a shift to a convenience market, as opposed to the speed market we used to see. What that means is if you wanted to get something delivered previously, the mindset was that you wanted it ASAP, but it was an inconvenience – you had to call the Chinese restaurant itself, the order was placed, but the end-customer had no idea where the delivery was or when it would arrive. If, for example, the delivery was late the customer would have to call the restaurant, who would then have to contact the driver to find out what the delay is and when the order will arrive.
Now what you see that with companies like Uber and Seamless came into the market with an online solution where you could order directly through the app, and now you order through a company like Postmates; people have gotten more used to that kind of convenience.
You also have big companies like Google with Google Express, and Amazon with Amazon Prime Now that have given an additional boost in New York where you can buy something on the Amazon Prime Now app and you can get it delivered within an hour. That being said, there’s a big change in this market from the speed market to convenience market – now, with Amazon and other players, you can be given an exact time period that it will be delivered, let’s say between six and eight and it’s now ten am so you can schedule your delivery between six and eight for tonight, but means speed became less important; it’s now more about the accuracy and the convenience to get it delivered when you want it.