May 31, 2017
New research has found that the increase of online shopping and the increased requirement for delivery of goods is not the sole factor for thriving new van sales.
The RAC Foundation has collated data which showed that less than four percent of the approximately 3.7 million vans on the UK roads are used for delivering goods. Although mere speculation, RAC Foundation director, Steve Gooding suggested that thriving new vans sales may be attributed to small businesses purchasing new vans and using them for both work and personal use.
Gooding is quoted as saying: “The question of why there are so many more vans is still a puzzle. Could it be the product of more small businesses and sole traders investing in vans and then using them both as a work tool and for family transport?”
Last year in the UK approximately 2.7 billion packages were delivered in the UK. Approximately 1.8 billion being attributed to business to consumer (B2C) deliveries (largely online shopping), while approximately 700 million packages were attributed to business to business (B2B). The remainder is attributed to consumers sending parcels to businesses or other consumers.
A small number of vans are involved in carrying out online shopping deliveries, however the RAC Foundation believes that these vans travel a “disproportionately high number of miles.” This is around 10 percent of the total distance covered by all vans.
The analysis conducted by the RAC Foundation also suggested a somewhat surprising trend: the growth in online shopping is helping to limit traffic growth in the UK, as people are using their vehicles less to go shopping. The RAC Foundation also quoted statistics from the National Travel Survey 2015 to suggest that: Personal shopping trips made by car fell by 14 percent for the period between 2002 and 2015, while distance travelled on these trips reduced by 19 percent.
The study also looked towards the future; it was predicted that B2C parcel volumes will continue to grow over the next four years, but at a slower rate of roughly six percent a year, with the rate currently increasing at nine percent a year. The growth of click and collect options are thought to be the reason behind this prediction. Despite the continual growth of online shopping over the past few years, there are a number of reasons behind thriving new van sales, with online shopping helping to ease traffic.
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