The definitive guide to pick-up points in Europe

June 25, 2018

Order online and have your items delivered straight to your home. Great! Except that most of us are not at home during the day. Enter pick-up points. Here to save us from our missed deliveries and help us return items with ease. No wonder the pick-up point market is booming. But how do attitudes to pick-up points in Europe vary from country to country? And how do the network sizes of pick-up points differ? We have delved into the pick-up point preferences of nine European countries to bring you the numbers.

Pick-up point networks in Europe

Let’s kick off with the full picture – a breakdown of all the networks of pick-up points in Europe. Clearly leading the way is DHL, offering close to 40,000 locations, followed closely by UPS. Click table to expand.

Note: numbers derived from website or corporate communication. Whilst every effort is taken to avoid errors, we cannot guarantee full accuracy.


The Netherlands

  • 17% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 2% prefer parcel lockers
  • 9% prefer Click & Collect

The Dutch have a positive attitude towards pick-up points with 17% of respondents stating that they were their preferred delivery method. The national delivery carrier PostNL installed parcel lockers at major train stations throughout the country in 2014 and they also have a network of pick-up points in convenience stores and retailers throughout the Netherlands. The Dutch pick-up point market is also served by multiple carriers with PostNL, DHL and Bpost being the three largest networks. There is a total network of 8,680 pick-up points in the Netherlands.


 

Belgium

  • 11% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 5% prefer parcel lockers
  • 13% prefer Click & Collect

Pick-up points are the preferred delivery method of 11% of the Belgians who were surveyed.  Almost a third of respondents stated that they prefer to collect their deliveries rather than have them delivered to their homes. In Belgium the main pick-up point providers are DHL, UPS and Bpost. The largest network of pick-up points in Belgium is Bpost who have 1250 pick-up points.


France

  • 45% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 6% prefer parcel lockers
  • 6% prefer Click & Collect

France has one of the most positive attitudes towards pick-up points in Europe. Almost half of French consumers state that pick-up points are their preferred delivery method and currently 20% of parcels in France are delivered to pick-up points. The main pick-up point carrier in France is Colissimo with 17,500 pickup points.


Germany

  • 6% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 10% prefer parcel lockers
  • 8% prefer Click & Collect

Germany has the biggest network of pick-up points in Europe. According to DHL, 90% of the German population are within ten minutes of a DHL packstation. DHL and Hermes have the highest number of pick-up points in Germany with 28,000 and 15,000 respectively. UPS, DPD and GLS also have a strong presence with a combined total of almost 15,000 pick-up points. Despite the colossal numbers of pick-up points most German consumers state that home delivery is their preferred delivery method, even if they don’t always opt for it!


Italy

  • 8% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 4% prefer parcel lockers
  • 10% prefer Click & Collect

Italy’s e-commerce market was named as one of the fastest growing in Europe as it increased by ten billion euros between 2012 and 2016. The Italian pick-up point network is mainly served by the country’s 2,800 UPS Access Points. Pick-up points are preferred by 8% of those surveyed and Click & Collect is one of the most popular delivery methods among consumers with 10% stating it as their preferred choice.


Poland

  • 16% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 36% prefer parcel lockers
  • 14% prefer Click & Collect

Most Polish respondents prefer their items to be delivered to an alternative location than their home. With parcel lockers being the preferred pick-up location it seems that Polish consumers are taking advantage of the convenience of being able to collect their items 24 hours a day. Polish delivery company InPost has 8,300 customer service points throughout Poland, 1,300 of which are parcel lockers.


Spain

  • 16% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 3% prefer parcel lockers
  • 16% prefer Click & Collect

Spanish attitudes to pick-up points are positive. 36% of those surveyed stated that they preferred to collect their items rather than have them delivered to their home. 16% of respondents selected Click & Collect as their favoured delivery option, which could be because of retail giants such as  Zara and Mango offering this as an option. Two of the biggest pick-up point providers in Spain are UPS and DPD, which together have over 3,000 pick-up points.


Sweden

  • 47% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 17% prefer parcel lockers
  • 16% prefer Click & Collect

Swedish e-commerce consumers are truly embracing pick-up points, with 47% stating that they were their preferred delivery method and 80% of respondents preferring to collect their items rather than have them delivered to their home. PostNord is the most prominent delivery carrier in Sweden with 1,900 pick-up points in Sweden and 5,100 locations throughout the whole Nordic region.


United Kingdom

  • 11% name pick-up points as their preferred delivery method
  • 5% prefer parcel lockers
  • 13% prefer Click & Collect

With 45 million e-commerce users in the UK, this is one of the biggest markets in Europe. Almost a third of the Brits surveyed stated that they prefer to collect their online shopping. Online shoppers in the UK have their pick of the pick-up points with DHL, Hermes, UPS, DPD, Royal Mail and Collect+ all offering pick-up points throughout the country. There are also a number of startups in the pick-up point market based here such as Doddle who have 336 branches. Doddle are shaking up the pick-up point market by offering new initiatives for example placing changing rooms in their stores so customers can try on and return their fashion items immediately if required.

Conclusion

Attitudes towards pick-up points in Europe are mainly positive. France and Sweden are embracing the pick-up point with almost half of those surveyed in both countries stating that it is their preferred delivery method. Pick-up lockers were a particular favourite for Polish customers with over a third stating it as their preferred way to receive items ordered online. Germany and France have the largest networks of pick-up points in Europe although customers in Germany state that they prefer home delivery.

There are a number of markets that are emerging across Europe particularly Poland and Sweden who’s network sizes are yet to catch up with their positive view of pick-up points. Overall there is a strong pick-up point presence in Europe with major delivery carriers locating multiple pick-up points here… and European customers seem to love it!

If you are looking to find out more about pick-up points you may find our four factors that customers want in a pick-up point and the best and worst ways to display pick-up points online blog posts useful. You can also re-watch this month’s webinar, where we were joined by DHL to discuss the importance of pick-up points in e-commerce.

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