How Fast Can Delivery Get?

by: Shad Bookout

Many of us who are over 40 can remember a day where a delivery truck showing up at your house was few and far between. More times than not, you had to go to Service Merchandise to retrieve that nifty new item you ordered for Christmas. Other than that, most deliveries arrived after weeks of waiting through the US Postal Service. Wow, how things have changed!

It seems that we now inhabit a world where the speed of delivery is racing to unprecedented levels. In the television show, Star Trek: The Next Generation, they could instantaneously produce what they needed with a replicator. While we may not be to sci-fi levels of promptness quite yet, the speed at which our order arrives to us today would stagger the imagination of previous generations.

The rise of Amazon brought with it a new level of focus on package delivery. FedEx, UPS, and the US Postal Service were quick to jump on to the bandwagon to try and earn the partnership dollars that came with the increase in package volumes. What used to be weeks of waiting turned into days. Then, came the event that changed everything forever.

In February of 2005, Amazon launched Prime shipping, allowing more than a million items to be guaranteed delivery within 48 hours of ordering. In the 12 years since, Amazon Prime membership has grown to the tens of millions, as has the number of items that can be delivered in such a short period of time. And, not satisfied with just two days, many items can be delivered in a matter of hours (same day). Amazon can even deliver packages inside your home with the recent announcement of Amazon Key.

So, more package are being delivered than ever before, faster than ever before. The true scale of this will be shown in less than one month when shoppers take to the interwebs for Cyber Monday. Half a billion items are being predicted to be shipped during a four-day period, starting on  November 24. To top it off, most of the packages are destined to arrive to houses, apartments, and businesses within two days.

So the new question now becomes… where is it all going to be kept after it arrives?