Together with DHL, Zalando and Feldsechs, Deutsche Telekom has developed a mobile solution for the acceptance for parcels in case a customer isn’t home. In 2015, it will start an experiment with PaketButler: easily foldable bags consumers can place in front of their doors whenever they are about to receive a package that day, but won’t be available to accept it themselves.
The test with PaketButler will start next year with 200 Zalando customers in Berlin. They will get a special bag, that’s easily foldable so consumers can put it away when it’s not being used. And when they are using it, they just have to put the bag in front of their door, with a handle attached behind the door, so it’s impossible to get stolen.
Only packages sent by DHL
Next a courier will come by and put the package in the bag. The bag can only made open by using a special NFC tag, couriers will carry with them. Afterwards they close the bag and a message will be sent to the customer, letting them know the package has been left behind in the PaketButler. The bag can also be used to return items. In this case customers don’t have to go to a return point anymore, they can just put their package in the bag and let DHL know there’s an item to be picked up.
The Paketbutler will cost just under 100 euros, but for this money the customer can only receive packages sent by DHL. But other courier companies may get added to the Paketbutler service.
It’s not the first time DHL tries to come up with the best delivery solution for parcels being sent to people who aren’t home. Earlier they came up with so called Paketkasten, which are parcel boxes for residential addresses. They can be rented for 1.99 euros per month or bought: the purchase price for the basic version starts from 99 euros.
‘Convencience is key to success of ecommerce’
“We asked ourselves what online shopping is missing to be a perfect experience”, Reimer Peter Hintz, whose company Feldsech manufactures the Paketbutler, says on the German website of Berliner Morgenpost. According to DHL’s CEO Thomas Ogilvie, convenience is the key to the success of ecommerce. He wants “to orchestrate the magic moment of delivering a package on the needs of the consumer”.