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Parcel lockers are the most popular form of delivery for Polish consumers

TSLParcel lockers are the most popular form of delivery for Polish consumers

Over the past two years, the market for parcel machines in Poland has undergone significant transformation. From 2021, the number of these devices has more than doubled, reaching 38,000 machines in 2023. This market growth is largely driven by customer preferences. In a study conducted by Colliers, nearly all respondents (99%) reported using these devices. There has also been a decrease in the market dominance of the pioneer in this field, InPost, indicating increased competition and diversity of providers. By 2024, the number of parcel machines in Poland is expected to reach 45,000, further facilitating the accessibility of this service to a broad audience.

Densest network

The dynamic expansion of the parcel machine offering is most visible in the Mazowieckie and Silesian provinces. The number of machines in Mazowsze amounts to 6,000, while the Silesian region stands out with the highest density of these devices – as much as 41 per 100 km². This figure is especially high when compared to the whole of southern Poland, with an average of about 19 machines per 100 km², or northern Poland, where this indicator is only about 8.

In recent years, the parcel machine market has undergone significant segmentation. As of December 2021, InPost Parcel Lockers dominated the market, accounting for 92% of all machines. However, by the end of 2023, their share fell to 57%, as new competitors such as DPD, Allegro, DHL and AliExpress, Orlen and Poczta Polska entered the market.

“The results of the study conducted by Colliers show how the expansion of parcel machines responds to changing consumer needs,” says Antoni Szwech, Senior Analyst in the Department of Advisory and Market Research, Colliers. “This solution has become the most convenient and available form of delivery in Poland, currently influencing the dynamic development of e-commerce in Poland,” he adds.

Convenience and Flexibility

The latest data from the 2023 Colliers report titled “Parcel Lockers 2.0: Development, Innovation, Future” shed new light on Polish preferences regarding parcel collection. Nearly all respondents (99%) declare using package machines, a slight increase compared to 2021 (97%).

“Interestingly, more than half of the respondents do not use courier collection points at all, and almost 70% declared that they rarely or never use courier services,” says Antoni Szwech. “Instead, a significant portion of participants (39%) stated that they prefer only to pick up parcels from parcel machines. Respondents indicated the ability to pick up the parcel at any time and the speed of delivery as the main advantages of this form of receipt,” he adds.

What and which machines do we order most often?

Respondents in 2023 indicated that among the products ordered, clothing and footwear still dominate (87% of respondents indicated this category), as well as books (80%). Interestingly, despite the emergence of new players in the market, InPost Lockers still enjoy the highest recognition among customers (99.8%). However, other companies like Allegro (83%), Orlen (75%), and DPD (68%) are also gaining popularity – most new market players have seen an increase in recognition compared to 2021.

Pro-ecological Solutions

Growing ecological awareness and the need to integrate parcel lockers into the urban landscape are shaping new directions for the development of this sector. Market leaders like InPost, Allegro, and DPD are introducing innovative solutions to meet these challenges. In 2021, InPost launched the first Parcel Locker® powered by solar energy using photovoltaic panels. Allegro went a step further, aiming for all their One Box machines to be powered by renewable energy, and additionally equipped with air quality sensors. DPD, on the other hand, installed screen-less machines powered by built-in batteries, another step towards reducing the carbon footprint. All these operators are also focusing on increasing the share of electric vehicles in their fleets. In an effort to better integrate the machines into the urban landscape, Allegro has started to cover the walls of their One-Boxes with vegetation and has stopped placing ads on them. Such actions improve not only the city’s aesthetics but also contribute to the improvement of the residents’ quality of life.

The Future of the Market in Poland

Currently, 65% of all InPost parcel machines are located in urban areas. For other operators, this figure ranges from 80% to 90%. In cities, there are almost 14 machines per 10,000 inhabitants, while in smaller urban centers and rural areas, this number is around 6 machines per 10,000 inhabitants.

“The significant expansion of parcel machines is forecast in smaller towns in 2024. Nationwide, by the end of 2024, the resources of the parcel machine market may reach 45,000 machines, which not only demonstrates the increasing popularity of this form of delivery but also reflects the adaptation of the entire industry to changing social and environmental needs,” summarizes Antoni Szwech.

About the Study

Nearly half a thousand people participated in the study conducted by Colliers – 58% women and 42% men, among whom 74% are people with higher education. 64% of the respondents are residents of the Mazowieckie province, and the same percentage of respondents live in cities with a population exceeding 500,000. This is the second edition of this study. The first edition was conducted by Colliers in December 2021 on a comparable sample of participants.

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