shipping or courier aggregators have become an essential part of the Indian eCommerce ecosystem. According to a report by RedSeer Consulting, the Indian e-commerce logistics market is projected to reach a value of $9.6 billion by 2023, driven by the growth of online retail.
Shipping aggregators play a crucial role in fulfilling this demand by providing businesses with access to multiple carriers and services at competitive rates. Moreover, they offer features such as label creation, tracking, and notifications, which streamline the shipping process and enhance the overall customer experience. With the growing competition in the eCommerce industry, shipping aggregators are becoming more necessary than ever for businesses to scale up and succeed.
Selecting the appropriate shipping aggregator that can facilitate a business's growth can be a perplexing task. It raises the question of how to identify the best aggregator, which involves evaluating various factors that are crucial to making an informed decision.
Top 10 factors to be considered when choosing a shipping aggregator
Some shipping aggregators may specialize in specific industries or types of shipments, such as e-commerce or international shipping, the right shipping aggregator for you will depend on your specific needs and priorities. Consider these factors carefully when making your decision:
1. Serviceable Pin-codes
It is essential to go with the aggregator that has coverage of all your potential customers' pin codes. Wide pin code serviceability ensures you to never miss out on any of the customers. For example, if your model business requires more intercity shipping then you should look for aggregators who have a good network of courier companies that deal in same-day and intra-city shipping like Dunzo, Smartr, Blowhorn, Borzo, Porter, etc
2. Ease of integration
Choose an aggregator that integrates well with your e-commerce platform, order management system, and other tools you use to run your business. This will help streamline your shipping process and reduce the risk of errors.
3. Number of courier partners
It is important to have access to all the major courier companies, although you might not work with every courier partner available it’s good to have access to as many couriers as possible in case of any new business need arises.
4. Fraud Order detection
Some shipping aggregators provide various AI-enabled capabilities that help you to detect risky orders and eventually reduce the cost that comes up with them. Some examples of these tools are advanced Address validation, RTO risk prediction, COD order block in the checkout, negative Facebook pixel, etc. These tools help reduce RTOs returns, saving businesses valuable time and reducing costs.
COD order verification is a tool that helps sellers double confirm the COD order before shipping the product. This confirmation is taken through WhatsApp where the shopper confirms the order and contact details for delivery. In addition to reducing the risks of COD returns, using WhatsApp for COD order verification can also provide other benefits for sellers. For example, it allows them to communicate directly with the customer and provide personalized service, which can help to build trust and loyalty.
6. Tracking and reporting
Make sure the aggregator provides detailed tracking and reporting tools so you can monitor the status of your shipments and get insights into your shipping performance. A single order tracking dashboard helps sellers to manage their orders across different stages of shipping and take necessary actions in case of any issue arises. For example, Seller can take follow up with the courier partner in case the order pickup is delayed.
NDR management is done in 3 stages that are recognizing the reason for NDR, following up with the end customer to arrange for a re-attempt based on the NDR reason if possible, Pushing the data back to Courier partners in real-time to avoid delays. Multiple features come in between these processes like IVR calls, automated touch points with the customers, changes in contact details and other several actions sellers can take to resolve non-delivery reports and convert them into successful deliveries. While evaluating aggregators it is important to ensure it has the capabilities to manage NDR efficiently.
A branded tracking page is a dedicated web page that provides customers with real-time updates on the status of their orders. This page is branded with the seller's logo and other design elements, creating a cohesive and professional appearance that reinforces the seller's brand identity. In addition to improving the visual appearance of the tracking page, a branded tracking page can also provide a range of other benefits for sellers such as running marketing campaigns, AI product recommendations, Net performance score and etc.
9. Early COD remittance
In ecommerce, cash flow is often tied to the payment and shipping process. If the seller offers Cash on Delivery (COD) as a payment option, the payment is typically collected by the shipping carrier at the time of delivery and then remitted back to the seller in 7 to 14 days. Early COD remittance refers to the process of receiving COD payments from the shipping carrier in a shorter amount of time than the standard remittance period. Aggregators equip sellers with early COD where they get COD remittance within 2-3 days.
10. Data analytics and dashboard
The dashboard helps you in managing the whole cycle of your shipping journey from order management to final delivery of the product. It is important to ensure that the dashboard has accurate reporting provisions and allows you to take necessary actions when and where required.
11. Customer support
Look for an aggregator with good customer support that is available to answer your questions and help you resolve any issues that arise. If you are going for a shipping aggregator you get access to the whole team that syncs up with couriers on your behalf saving your time and the cost of extra staffing.
Shipping or logistics aggregators have enabled thousands of ecommerce brands. Because of the ever-changing trends in the industry, it is essential to select the right shipping partner that not only helps you to ship your products but also gives you venues to grow your business. Several renowned shipping aggregators have made up their names in the industry such as Swift, Shiplyte, iThinklogistics, VamaShip, etc.
Top 7 Best Shipping Aggregators for Ecommerce in India
Ecommerce in India is one of the fastest growing and most exciting channels for entrepreneurs. In recent years eCommerce has seen a boom in India owing to an increase in smartphone and internet penetration. After a surge in digital adoption during COVID-19, the Indian e-commerce market is estimated to be worth over $55 Bn in Gross Merchandise Value in 2021.
There is a huge transition in adaptability in eCommerce transactions. Almost 100% of pin codes in India have seen eCommerce adaptation. The eCommerce trend is gaining momentum in tier 2 and tier 3 cities and contributes to almost half of the total online shoppers.
One of the major aspects of eCommerce is its logistics. With the surge in shopping trends across the nation, wide serviceability, and fulfillment have become a challenge for sellers. Since logistics are an inevitable part of the ecommerce business, therefore, business owners must select courier partners very carefully.
There are a lot of new logistics players that have emerged in the market recently but there is a gap in the availability of the features and providing a full stack shipping solution to the sellers. We have curated a detailed comparison between top logistics aggregators in India which will help sellers select the best to scale their business.
Swift is a new-age, AI-intensive shipping solution that enables D2C businesses to sell anywhere and ship everywhere by connecting every link in the e-commerce value chain in a free-flowing, plug-and-play environment. Swift has empowered more than ten thousand businesses and has processed more than $2M in GMV.
All kinds of businesses and sellers can leverage Swift’s hassle-free shipping for their businesses, small or big sellers, drop shippers, and sellers selling on their stores like Shopify, Magento, Prestashop, WooCommerce, Wix, etc, or sellers selling through marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, etc. Swift also provides access to all the major courier partners such as Bluedart, Delhivery, Ekart, Smartr, DTDC, etc.
Swift provides their customers with an order management system, and fulfillment dashboard, which streamline the whole process and eliminate the need of using multiple platforms. It also provides features like COD verification, branded tracking page, and advanced communication flows without any monthly platform charges.
2. iThink Logistics
iThink Logistics is another aggregator that has emerged in recent times. It also provides multiple integrations and has no minimum order commitment to start shipping. They provide shipping to more than 26K pin codes in India and provide international shipping to countries like USA, UK, and Australia. They have features like an RTO recommendation engine, shipping insurance, and integrations and also provide same-day delivery options.
Shipdelight is another reliable option for shipping services, offering shipping to over 26,000 pin codes in India. They provide customers with order, inventory, and warehouse management systems, along with post-shipping engagement tools like branded tracking pages, automated alerts, and notifications. They have partnerships with major courier services like Bluedart, Kerry Logistics, Delhivery, and FedEx, ensuring that customers have access to a wide range of shipping options.
Shiprocket is one of the oldest courier aggregators and provides different shipping rates based on the plan that you take. support. Shiprocket has multiple features like Debt funding, international shipping, ERP, etc which makes them stand out from other aggregators.
Shiprocket also provides their customers with a COD option, insurance cover, and early COD remittance for their shipments. They have Smart, Lite, Professional, and Enterprise plans for sellers and every plan has different rates.
Founded in 2015, Vamaship is also one of the oldest aggregators and provides shipping to more than 27000 pin codes and cross-border shipping to more than 180 countries. They have all the major courier services like FedEx, Ekart, Xpressbees, Ecom, etc.
ShipDroid may not have the same level of reach as some of its competitors, as it has fewer courier partners. Nevertheless, it has remained a preferred choice for eCommerce shipping aggregation, thanks to its efficient account management system, dashboard, and fulfillment services. These features enable retailers to analyze their sales efficiently and track orders in real time. Shipdroid does not provide post-shipping engagement tools like branded tracking page and has serviceability to around 19000 pin codes.
Shippigo is an automated shipping service and courier aggregator that serves eCommerce companies, drop shippers, and manufacturers. They have partnerships with over 16 prominent national carriers and provide prepaid COD shipping options to 24,000 pin codes.
Merchants can leverage Shippigo's platform to compare carrier rates and integrate with eCommerce marketplaces such as Myntra and Amazon with ease. Shippigo can process bulk shipping batches of up to 1000 orders at once, and they also provide pick-up and warehousing solutions for businesses to streamline their order fulfillment process.
Scaling up an eCommerce business in today's fiercely competitive market has emerged as a daunting challenge for D2C sellers. Once the monthly sales numbers soar past the 1000 mark, managing the shipping cycle becomes a vigorous task. Therefore, it is crucial for businesses to carefully choose the appropriate shipping aggregation platform that can aid in bolstering their growth plans. The aggregator's capabilities must be versatile enough to accommodate the challenges that arise during scaling up, thereby ensuring a seamless expansion. The right partner in shipping can make all the difference in propelling your eCommerce business to greater heights.