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Shipping Carrier Sendle Launches in Canada Targeting Small Ecommerce Businesses [Interview]

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Sendle, the first shipping carrier specifically designed to serve the needs of small ecommerce businesses, has launched in Canada, promising the end of the era of expensive parcel delivery in the country.

The company says it is bringing shipping rates that are 88 per cent cheaper than Canada Post.

“After two-and-half hard years through the pandemic and now record-high inflation, small businesses in Canada are frustrated with how unfair Canadian shipping rates are and why the Canadian industry is not supporting them,” said Lauren Helstab, Sendle’s country manager for Canada. “Small businesses can’t afford to have 65 per cent of customers abandoning their shopping carts at checkout because of high shipping costs. 

“Plus, small businesses can’t compete with big retailers without fair rates. More than ever, independent businesses need more choice in their shipping options in Canada and they deserve a solution like Sendle that is built for them and offers rates that finally make sense.

Image: Sendle

“Sendle’s headquarters are in Toronto and we are effectively a digital courier built for small business in ecommerce.” 

The concept began in 2014 in Australia and expanded into the US in 2019. 

“Really what we’re doing is we are trying to solve the problem of exorbitant shipping rates in Canada,” said Helstab. 

“Small businesses need better rates. They are screaming for it . . . It’s crazy in Canada right now . . .  We’re a national shipping service. We deliver to 100 per cent of Canadian postal codes.

“One of the things we think is really important is to help small businesses thrive. Right now there’s not a lot of choice or competition in the Canadian shipping industry for national carriers so we’re really excited to bring a more affordable option.”

Image: Sendle

Right now it also picks up from the majority, about 80 per cent, of postal codes in Canada – BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Quebec with Atlantic Canada and northern Canada coming soon.

“Small businesses in Canada are long overdue for a parcel delivery option designed for them – one that helps them to serve rising customer expectations in the age of ecommerce. At a time when inflation is high and costs are rising, Sendle’s entry into the Canadian market puts an end to what’s largely been a monopoly in shipping with a solution that’s more affordable, reliable, and more flexible to suit the needs of small businesses in Canada,” said James Chin Moody, CEO and co-founder of Sendle, in a statement. 

“We have also been 100 per cent carbon neutral since the day we launched in Australia in late 2014. To date, Sendle has offset the impact of 34 billion kilometres of parcel delivery. We are not only bringing Canadians a 100 per cent carbon neutral way to ship at no extra cost, we are also putting pressure on the Canadian shipping industry to do better on this front, too.”

Sendle said it offers free pickups with no hidden fees, subscriptions, or minimums required. 

Image: Sendle

The company cited a recent Leger survey showing consumer frustration with Canadian courier services. Sendle said:

  • Ecommerce has rapidly grown and evolved in Canada, with over 27 million Canadians embracing ecommerce in 2022. Yet 71 per cent of Canadians say they are frustrated with courier services in Canada;
  • Shipping costs rank as the leading frustration (42 per cent) for Canadians, followed by lack of reliability (26 per cent), poor customer service (24 per cent), and having the parcel shipped to a different location than their door (21 per cent);  
  • 30 per cent are shopping online less this year because of the cost of shipping;
  • 64 per cent of consumers who have shopped online in the past year feel that the cost of shipping for online purchases has risen since pre-pandemic times;
  • 57 per cent are shopping less, in general, because of inflation, with 11 per cent shopping less online, specifically;
  • 66 per cent of Canadians have been shocked by the high cost of shipping once they reach the checkout page for an online purchase;
  • 65 per cent of Canadian consumers have abandoned their shopping carts because of the shipping costs;
  • 39 per cent are more likely to purchase from an online retailer that provides a “green” shipping option such as carbon neutral shipping. An even greater share of younger shoppers (45 per cent of those under 35 years old) say they’ll do the same.

Article Author

Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary, has more than 40 years experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist, and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, faith, city and breaking news, and business. He is the Senior News Editor with Retail Insider in addition to working as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training.

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