1. Overview of Best eCommerce Shipping or Courier or Logistics Aggregators in UAE
The United Arab Emirates is a unique market where oil riches surrounded the country, but the stark wealth gaps kept the onset of eCommerce at bay. High net worth individuals were less likely to explore online shopping options or even shop for themselves, while lower-income groups which are composed of a majority of migrants suffered from a lack of economic freedom.
In the previous decade, however, the UAE has witnessed a surge in financial inclusion. Its aim to become an oil independent economy has created business opportunities that have contributed towards bridging the economic divide. The reduction in tax rates, creation of special economic zones (SEZs), and relaxation in compliances have invited domestic and international companies to set up shop in the region, and coupled with the improved financial inclusion eCommerce is booming.
In the year 2020, the eCommerce sector in the UAE hit a record $3.9 billion in market value, on a trajectory to reach $8 billion by the end of 2025. This ever-increasing market size has trickled down to allied industries, especially logistics. While the UAE has always been a major transit hub for global shipping, the local market was less than lucrative for logistics companies until a few years ago.
The rise in the number of eCommerce businesses beginning operations in the Emirates has created a window for shipping and logistics opportunities, and along with it a field day for aggregators. While shipping aggregation remains a market in its nascent stages in the UAE it is rapidly growing and so is the demand for the service.
In this blog, we help eCommerce companies understand the importance of aggregators, list the best shipping aggregators in the middle east, and explain factors that determine a suitable partnership.
2. What is an aggregator of shipping or logistics or courier services in eCommerce?
A shipping or logistics or courier aggregator is a logistics company that establishes partnerships with multiple shipping companies to extend their eCommerce businesses through a single platform. An aggregator is an ideal solution for small and medium-sized businesses as it does not require eCommerce companies to maintain individual relationships with shipping companies.
A courier or logistics aggregator offers an assortment of shipping companies that can be used to book order shipments by comparing the partners. Such a platform can be used to decide the best possible shipping mode, route, and partner for a particular without having to reach each courier company separately.
A logistics or shipping aggregator also enables eCommerce companies to retrieve information and track the location of multiple shipments through a single platform. This enables businesses to manage their orders from a unified system saving time and other resources.
A shipping or courier aggregation service can be great for your business helping you scale easily and handle volumes, however, some may find it challenging to determine which service provider is the right one. Therefore, here is a list of the best courier or shipping, or logistics aggregators in the UAE.
3. List of top 6 best courier or shipping aggregators in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
ClickPost is a logistics intelligence company that offers end-to-end logistics management solutions to eCommerce businesses. It has partnered with more than 120 courier partners around the world and is quickly gaining traction in the Middle East. It provides a unified platform for online sellers to manage multiple courier partners through a single system.
ClickPost integrates their solution with eCommerce companies effortlessly and extends a host of capabilities that help them generate orders and waybills, manage deliveries and cancellations, track orders and handle returns across multiple shipping partners through a single software.
Carriyo is a Dubai-based logistics company that offers omnichannel shipping solutions for businesses. The platform outsources delivery operations to multiple delivery companies in the UAE to get the product to the doorstep of the end consumer.
Carriyo enables businesses to optimize shipping routes, manage carriers and labels for orders, track orders, manage returns requests, and offers integrations with storefronts such as Shopify and Magento.
OTO is a logistics solutions provider headquartered in Egypt. It has partnered with more than 90 delivery companies to offer shipping services to eCommerce businesses in the Middle East. The platform works in a four-step manner—where businesses connect with the platform, access their services, manage their orders, and customize their experience.
OTO offers integrations with online storefront platforms like Shopify, Woocommerce, and Magento as well as various online marketplaces. It also offers delivery management services to eCommerce businesses who want to manage their own fleet for delivery.
AfterShip is a Hong Kong-based logistics startup that offers shipment tracking and courier aggregation services around the world. The company has partnered with a whopping 859 courier companies globally, and major online storefronts such as Shopify and Woocommerce.
AfterShip offers an intuitive multi-carrier tracking solution that allows businesses to trace the location of their shipments and display branded tracking pages on their eCommerce website. Its platform also allows businesses to notify their customers, showcase expected delivery dates, and even develop actionable insights to gauge delivery performance.
MetaPack is a London-based delivery platform that develops delivery management solutions for eCommerce businesses. It is integrated with more than 400 carriers around the world and enables services such as quick deliveries and international shipments. It handles more than 600 million orders every year from major brands including ASOS, Sports Direct, and Marks & Spencer.
Metapack offers a multi-carrier shipping software that is integrated with all major carriers in the UAE and allows businesses to choose the most suitable service for an order as well as track the shipment through the same platform.
Wimo is a logistics solutions provider headquartered in Dubai offering cross-border eCommerce shipping aggregation. It has operations in UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, and Qatar; and enables businesses from other countries to sell their products in the region.
Wimo offers bulk pickup services from the country of the eCommerce business and brings products to local fulfillment centers in the UAE. Wimo is an affordable aggregation solution that ensures same-day COD remittance, returns management, and warehousing solutions.
4. When do eCommerce businesses need an aggregator for shipping or logistics services?
A courier or shipping aggregator is a solution that businesses use after crossing a certain threshold of order volume. When an eCommerce business is receiving multiple orders a day, it begins to require the services of multiple courier companies who specialize in different domains and regions. A shipping aggregator can help businesses keep up with the growth in demand for their products by offering multiple shipping partners over a single platform.
While most large businesses maintain independent partnerships with shipping companies, small and medium-sized businesses with modest order volumes find it a hassle to reach out to individual players. Instead, an aggregator acts as a transitory phase where a business that grows large enough automatically migrates to a larger solution such as a logistics intelligence platform.
5. What to consider when choosing a shipping or logistics aggregator for your eCommerce business?
If you are considering signing up to avail of the services of a logistics aggregator, here are some key points to consider before choosing your ideal partner.
5.1) Courier partnerships
One of the most important factors to consider before choosing a courier aggregator is the partnerships that it maintains with courier companies. Make sure that your aggregator has partnered with reliable shipping services providers, with a reliable history.
Another important point to consider is the number of partnerships that the aggregator has maintained. More courier partners would mean that you reach a wider audience and geography.
5.2) Cost of shipping
Shipping aggregators offer pre-negotiated rates from courier companies coupled with their commissions. To maintain profitable relationships, choose an aggregator that offers a feasible solution and competitive shipping rates.
Look out for additional charges that may not be explicitly disclosed at the time of signing up for the service; such hidden charges can put a serious dent into your profits margins.
5.3) Speed of delivery
Customers of the digital age have little patience. With deliveries getting faster every day, you need a partnership that can give you an edge in the highly competitive market that eCommerce is.
Selecting the right aggregators means selecting a service provider that can ensure that your customer receives the product on time. Since delivery timelines are becoming shorter, your aggregator must be able to keep up with the pace.
5.4) Coverage area or serviceable area
Expansion requires increased serviceability, and your business needs to be able to reach the farthest corners to never miss out on an opportunity. An aggregator must be able to cope with your need to serve customers in several locations and must not limit your business by geographical boundaries.
5.5) Order tracking
In order to avoid the instance of a misplaced order or delayed delivery, an aggregator must offer reliable tracking information. Order tracking capabilities are not only beneficial for the eCommerce business but also allow end consumers to receive information on the status of their deliveries, and prevent a case of WISMO requests.
5.6) Cash or card on delivery serviceability and remittance
In the event where your consumer would like to opt for an option to pay when the product is delivered, you would need an aggregator that allows such a service. Choose an aggregator that offers COD services to help attract more customers to your business.
Another important factor is COD remittance, i.e. the time taken by the aggregator to transfer the amount received upon delivery to your account. To maintain adequate cash reserves, look for a partner that offers faster remittance in the case of COD orders.
5.7) Return to Origin (RTO) rate
RTO is the instance of the product being sent back to the seller due to a failed delivery attempt. A high RTO percentage translates into a poor track record of making deliveries to the end consumer.
Opt for a logistics aggregator that has maintained a low RTO% to ensure that your delivery partner is making every effort to deliver the product to your end consumer.
5.8) Non-Delivery Receipt Management
An NDR management system can prevent a case of failed deliveries. When a delivery attempt has been reported to have failed, and NDR management system can report the issue to the seller and help reach out to the customer to resolve the issue with receiving the product.
Choose a partner that offers a high-quality NDR management solution to avoid RTOs.
6. Final conclusion
The logistics market is a complicated sector involving a myriad of processes that need to be cohesive in order to execute a delivery as required. The need of the hour is for eCommerce businesses to understand the importance of technology in shipping operations and leverage it. While shipping may seem a highly human resource-driven venture, a great number of technological tools can be used to improve the entire experience and rate of success.
The UAE is a growing market with immense potential, increasing incomes, and an increasing ex-pat population. The diversity and location of the region have made it a hotspot for high-level economic activity, which used to be limited to a more conservative section of the nation but is now becoming popular with the masses. The United Arab Emirates is witnessing a technological take over the oil economy, putting it on the map of the tech world. The region has been attracting large amounts of investments in the technology sector and is likely to keep growing at a high rate for the coming years.
Technology has penetrated deep into the lives of customers and consumers of eCommerce products are getting more used to their orders reaching them as fast as if they would get it from a brick and mortar store. To keep with the increasing demand for faster, accurate, and safer deliveries, working with an aggregator could make or break your business. It is extremely important to consider all the factors before settling for any partner.