Logistics is defined as ‘the commercial activity of transporting goods to customers’. So it is safe to assume that the courier partners selected by Indian ecommerce companies as part of their logistics fleet are supposed to deliver sellers’ goods to end consumers. Simple, right?
Although, ecommerce-focussed logistics start-up Xpressbees has lost its way as far as the definition of logistics is concerned. The company’s tagline is ‘Delivering Happiness’. We don’t know about happiness, but sellers and customers have shared with Indian Online Seller (IOS) that Xpressbees is not delivering their packages.
Snapdeal seller lost 14 orders in 2 days due to Xpressbees
In times when every seller is fighting a lone battle against competitors, marketplace-owned sellers, ever-changing policies and marketplaces’ indifferent attitude, every order counts. And losing even one order could have detrimental impact on business.
Rajkot-based seller Kishan of Medex Inc. lost not one but fourteen orders in the span of just 2 days. The Snapdeal seller was informed by the etailer that customers refused to accept his 12 COD orders and 2 prepaid orders placed between 11th and 12th June 2017. The courier company that was handed over the responsibility to deliver these orders was Xpressbees.
The seller decided to check the package tracking details (IOS has reviewed the proof) and he discovered that the orders didn’t move from the courier firm’s delivery hub. He asked Snapdeal that how can customers reject a parcel that didn’t even reach their doors. The marketplace didn’t provide any satisfactory reply. The products were returned to the seller after a month but his question remains unanswered.
Kishan shared with IOS that many sellers are going through the same issue.
Xpressbees is the worst logistics company, says seller
Seller Rajshekar G has raised many tickets in the last two years to complain against ‘no pick-up attempts’ by Xpressbees. He shared proofs with IOS to validate his claim that in spite of complaining multiple times to Paytm and Snapdeal, nothing has been done to rectify the issue. Because of no pick-up, the seller has lost many orders.
“Yes, (Xpressbees is) the WORST logistics company. They don’t even come for pickups on time. I have been raising complaints on Paytm and Snapdeal for more than 2 years almost every day but nothing has changed… The hard part is, my orders get cancelled sometimes due to not picking up my orders and have to follow-up again not to get penalized,” states Rakshekar while speaking to IOS.
“Most times even when pickups were done, they do not update tracking details for at least two days. This problem exists since 2015 and NOTHING has changed until today and in fact I have to raise ticket today also.”
Another seller, TM (name withheld on request) used to sell fashion jewellery on Jabong. But he ended his association after Jabong stopped responding to his emails about providing C-Forms for all invoices issued to them.
While speaking about his experience with Xpressbees when he used to sell on Jabong, he said,
“During our business with Jabong, Xpressbees would not pickup ready-to-ship orders for up to a week. Then they would pickup but the orders would obviously get cancelled, but then they would take literally months to return the parcels. We have received returns in February for orders cancelled in September!”
Customers’ reviews validate sellers’ claim
Be it social media platforms or reviewing websites, customers have written not so positive reviews about Xpressbees service. And it is not limited to Snapdeal. Customers of Flipkart, Paytm, Firstcry, ShopCJ, NetMeds, Lenskart, Healthkart and many other ecommerce portals are unhappy with the courier company’s bad service.
A common feature in most of the complaints is – fake delivery updates. Customers have accused Xpressbees of sending ‘consignee was not available’ messages without even attempting delivery. Other complaints include late delivery, non-existent customer service and misleading customers with fake ‘out for delivery’ updates.
One customer wrote (check the image below) in his review that Xpressbees asked him to collect his order instead of delivering it. And later said that don’t worry about your money, you’ll get it back because of marketplace’s return policy!
It goes on to prove that Kishan and others are right when they say that the Xpressbees is returning products without delivering it to customers. The company is earning its revenue without worrying about sellers’ losses. Why else would they send fake tracking updates and tell customers that they shouldn’t worry because of etailers’ return policy?
Xpressbees bad service is not the main issue, marketplaces’ lack of concern is
In this year alone, IOS has published reports on Snapdeal’s logistics arm Vulcan Express and Amazon Transportation Services (ATS). Xpressbees is latest to join the list.
If you type and search Xpressbees on Twitter then you would find that 20 out of 30 tweets are about the company’s bad service. So it is not hard to discover that buyers and sellers are not happy. Yet, many ecommerce companies continue to turn a blind eye. Cheap rates could be one of the prime reasons. But is upsetting vendors and consumers worth it?
IOS requested Snapdeal to share their response to sellers’ allegations against Xpressbees. The company’s spokesperson says,
“We have a strict process to check for wrong returns to sellers. Once the 3PL marks the shipment as returned, Snapdeal reaches out to customer to check for delivery attempt. In case, we fail to connect with the customer after multiple attempts, shipment is returned back to sellers.”
“In case of high return % of 3PLs in a location, we remove the 3PL completely from that location (if possible) or reduce their load. That way we try to assign best available 3PLs for seller-customer combination.”
When IOS asked to share a statement specific to Xpressbees and complaints related to it, the marketplace chose to not answer it. Emails were sent to Paytm and Xpressbees as well but we didn’t receive their responses at the time of publication.
Paytm’s lack of response could be attributed to the fact that the Alibaba-backed company is an equity investor in Xpressbees.
Ecommerce businesses are heavily dependent on timely delivery. And sellers are dependent on online marketplaces to achieve the on-time delivery target. Big sellers can self-ship their orders but small players don’t have the means to pay for premium courier companies’ charges. More so, when ‘free delivery’ has become an inevitable part of the online shopping experience.
SMEs are often lured by marketplaces to use their warehouse and delivery service to improve their sales and seller ratings. But after reading seller experiences about courier companies like Xpressbees, it seems that neither the logistic players and nor the etailers care about providing a good service to its customers and following ethical business practices.
Sellers, is your online business affected by Xpressbees lies as well? If so, then were you able to find a solution? Let us know by leaving your comments below.