retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Wall Street Journal this morning reports that “more big trucking companies are looking to cash in on home delivery of bulky items as consumers grow more comfortable shopping online for furniture and other goods too big for conventional parcel networks.”

The reason, according to the story, is that “shoppers accustomed to getting online purchases in days, not weeks, and tracking those packages, now look for similar service when they buy big items like couches, washing machines and exercise equipment. Such objects often require installation or special handling, and may not fit in the highly automated systems that carriers like United Parcel Service Inc. and FedEx Corp. use to sort millions of packages each day. That has drawn in large trucking operators who want to use their scale to lure large retailers as customers for home-delivery services.”

Expanding into this segment, the Journal writes, gives trucking services the ability to “move into one area in the retail world that is growing rapidly as digital sales carve away business from brick-and-mortar stores.”
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