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UK e-fulfilment: Market Insight Report 2014

  • ID: 2778061
  • Report
  • February 2014
  • Region: United Kingdom, Great Britain
  • 30 Pages
  • Apex Insight
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This market covers the provision of fulfilment services to internet retailers in the UK. It includes both pure play on-line retailers and traditional store-based retailers which also have an online presence – increasingly this is all major retailers.

It does not include fulfilment of digital products such as software or music via electronic downloads.

We quantify the market size, historical growth rates, while reviewing key factors behind these figures.

We also carry out an in-depth analysis of the relevant drivers of industry growth – including the macroeconomic environment, e-commerce volumes – for both domestic and international orders – and e-fulfilment price and volume trends. It sets out historical trends and available forecasts.

Our forecast for industry growth is based on our market model. We have constructed this based on our analysis of trends and growth drivers and using inputs and assumptions which are drawn from market evidence and which are explained and discussed in the report.


As internet shopping continues to grow, so the fulfilment of its orders continues to be a growth market – in contrast to the maturity of many areas of the logistics industry.

Key drivers include:

- Ongoing growth in internet penetration and consumer acceptance of / enthusiasm for shopping online.
- The internationalisation of internet shopping.
- Innovations on the part of internet retailers, fulfilment providers and their transport partners – including click and collect, SMS notifications and development of chains of parcel shops and secure locker banks.


The report is intended for:

- Operators of e-fulfilment and general logistics businesses
- Retailers who sell via the internet
- Investors in these businesses
- Potential new entrants to the e-fulfilment market
- Market regulators and policymakers
- Banks, analysts, consultants and other parties with interests in the sector.


This report is based on:

- Publicly available data including company annual reports, websites, press releases and government statistics
- Interviews with senior-level contacts in the market
- In-depth analysis of the macroeconomic environment and relevant market drivers such as trends in retail sales, internet shopping, mail order and price trends.
- Our own experience of carrying out commercial and operational due diligence on behalf of many investors considering backing logistics businesses.

Information from these sources has been synthesised and presented clearly and concisely with extensive use of charts and tables to illuminate points and support conclusions.


1-5 Users licence:
Full version of the report plus a conference call with the analysts' team to discuss findings and answer any questions you may have on areas such as report methodology, definitions, inputs to our forecast model and alternative scenarios.
The report may be shared by up to five team members from within your organisation.

Enterprisewide licence:
Full version of the report plus conference call.
Report may be shared with any colleagues from within your organisation, saved on a network drive and, provided we have been notified, shared with advisors.
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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3 of 5


  • Allport Cargo Services
  • Clipper
  • DHL
  • John Lewis
  • Norbert Dentressangle
  • Spark
  • MORE
About this report
What does the report cover?
Why is this report interesting?
Who is it useful for?

Market definition and characteristics
Market issues and trends
Operators trends
Market size and growth=

About Apex Insight
Company background
Consulting services
Recent related research
Research subscriptions

e-fulfilment market overview
International comparisons
Characteristics of the market
Low entry barriers for serving small customers
Scale necessary to serve large e-retailers
At the low end, margins may be higher but business is less secure and account management is critical
Desire of start-ups to outsource
Switching barriers
Cost pressures from the consumer down the supply chain
High returns rates
High importance of IT systems
Transport management

Market trends
Increasing internationalisation of e-commerce
Trend for baskets to get smaller
Delivery innovations
Click and Collect and multichannel retailing:
Delivery: convergence of B2B and B2C parcels operations
E-fulfilment developed in-house when e-retailers have the capacity

Market size and growth
Household Disposable Income and retail sales
Internet sales
Views of other analysts
Transaction volumes
International transactions
Market size and segmentation

Competitive landscape
Major logistics groups
Larger fulfilment specialists
Marketplaces / smaller fulfilment specialists
Post offices developing e-fulfilment services

Driver forecasts
Household Disposable Income and retail sales
Mail order transactions
Average shopping basket
International transactions
Market forecast
Risks to the forecast

Appendix: List of abbreviations

List of figures (UK e-fulfilment Market Insight Report 2014)

1. Overview of e-fulfilment services
2. Internet shopping penetration for selected EU countries / % of households
3. Internet shopping returns rate by category of item / %
4. Basket values: market average and ASOS / £ per order
5. Household Disposable Income and Retail Sales / % change
6. Internet sales: value and as % of all retailing / £bn, %
7. UK Mail order and internet retail / £bn
8. Number of UK mail order transactions / millions per year
9. UK e-retailers sales, domestic and international transactions (£bn)
10. e-fulfilment market size (£m)
11. 2012 e-fulfilment specialists' revenue (£m)
12. 2012 e-fulfilment specialists' profit margin (%)
13. Household Disposable Income and Retail Sales / % change
14. Number of UK mail order transactions / millions per year
15. Average shopping basket value
16. e-fulfilment market size forecast (£m)
17. UK e-retailers sales forecast, domestic and international transactions (£bn)
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
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Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown