The journey of your ezbuy parcel
When it comes to online shopping, we’re no strangers to ezbuy – our lifesaver for sourcing all sorts of cheap hunts on Taobao, from cute tops to gorgeous sofa sets. But with a gazillion orders placed each day for items from all over China, Korea, Taiwan, America, and even here in Singapore, it’s a wonder how our parcels make it safely to our hands within a fortnight or so – and sometimes in just a day.
We went behind the scenes at one of ezbuy’s two local warehouses to learn the secrets behind every ezbuy parcel’s journey – here’s how it all works:
When you place an order on ezbuy
Even Bugis can’t beat these prices
Image credit: ezbuy
Many of us are familiar with the journey’s beginning – you browse through the plethora of listings, scrutinise the reviews of the items you fancy, then add them to your cart. Once payment is done, you simply dust your hands, sit back and wait. But on the other side of the coin, there’s a whole lot more that actually happens when you click “check out”.
Step 1: Your orders are packed in a MASSIVE warehouse in China
Heavy containers of parcels no longer have to be lugged up stairs – these high-tech conveyor belts in ezbuy’s China warehouse simplify the process!
Image credit: ezbuy
The warehouse in China used to occupy only a single floor unit – this meant that it would get crazy packed during big sales like Black Friday and 11/11. And as the leading Taobao shopping agent in Singapore, it’s only natural that when major sales strike, it’s not just our wallets that’ll take a hit, but the delivery timeliness of our items as well.
ezbuy has since expanded their warehouse to 10 times their original capacity, and they’ve also replaced most of the manual sorting of parcels with automated sorting machines. Automated conveyor belts and sliding ramps are also an added convenience to aid the transportation of parcels across various levels, which helps to streamline and speed up the entire packing process.
Step 2: Home delivery parcels are separated from self collection parcels in China
Items meant for self collection, still wrapped up in the packaging after being unloaded from a container truck from China.
All items – regardless of whether marked “delivery” or “self-collection” – would be shipped to the main warehouse in Singapore. Parcels of different sizes – furniture included – would all be placed in the same area, making the search and retrieval of singular parcels quite the obstacle course for ezbuy’s delivery staff.
Instead of just 1, ezbuy’s now got another massive warehouse in town to store all our loot – and parcels are sent to each warehouse according to their respective collection method. This translates to more space in the warehouses for staff to unload, sort, and collate orders more efficiently, and earlier notifications of ready parcels!
When you arrange for collection
The message you look forward to all the time
As a consumer, receiving a text announcing the arrival of your parcel signals the start of the next step. And while your next call to action is to confirm a date, time and method of delivery, this is how the delivery process is further broken down:
Step 3: Self-collection parcels are further sorted into 3 pick-up methods
If self-collection is your go-to option of choice, you’ll know that ezbuy presents you with 3 self-collection checkpoints – MRT stations, specified neighbourhood collection points, and warehouses in industrial and business hubs if you work in the vicinity.
Packing for each day’s delivery used to be one gargantuan treasure hunt for delivery staff who had to manually sieve through mountains of parcels to name match the right ones – all thanks to a lack of an organised system.
The warehouse is organised into 3 separate segments
The minute a shipment arrives at ezbuy’s local warehouse, it is immediately unpacked and categorised according to their respective collection points – this means a speedier retrieval of items.
All incoming shipment bundles from China are labelled with stickers to indicate the kind of collection method they fall under
The categorisation is done all the way back in the China warehouse to help expedite the sorting process once it reaches our shores. Exactly the reason why you can sometimes collect your parcels just a couple of days from the date of order.
When your parcel gets dispatched for collection
Collection time? More like celebration time because your items are on their way!
D-Day arrives and you can’t be any happier – and though the only thing for you to do now is turn up, the delivery staff of ezbuy still have a few more tasks on their hands to ensure you get your goodies on time.
Step 4: Parcels are color coded to make the delivery man’s life easier
If you’re a seasoned ezbuy user, you’re probably familiar with the sight of the delivery man frantically flipping through every parcel in the truck to find yours. Now imagine trying to find a single parcel in a warehouse full of parcels identically packed in white non-descript plastic bags. You guessed right – it’s a nightmare.
Your ezbuy parcels now come in 4 different coloured poly mailers – but the improved quality and added aesthetics aside, the colours are actually there to make the sorting a lot easier.
All parcels are randomly allocated a colour, so when a delivery staff needs to quickly pull out a particular parcel, the first step is to narrow the search down based on colour.
Thanks to this way more efficient method, you can now get your order the day it arrives in Singapore if you arrange for collection early enough!
Note: The old packaging is still used for items too large to fit into the new poly mailers.
Step 5: Less time is needed to consolidate orders for different pick-up points
These are a few of the many storage racks for the storage of parcels not yet arranged for collection
When it comes to delivering the parcels to their respective self-collection checkpoints, each staff is appointed a collection “zone” they’re in charge of that covers a number of MRT and neighbourhood collection points.
It was common practice for the delivery staff to sort the parcels according to their respective pick-up spots while picking them from the storage racks. But while this sort-on-the-go plan worked, it also required them to retrace their steps multiple times a day, proving to be taxing and ineffective.
Hello, sorting stations! Wearable “ring” QR code scanners and algorithms are used to determine a parcel’s collection point in an instant, making the entire sorting process a lot less tedious.
A wearable “ring” scanner is now used to scan parcels’ QR codes during the sorting process
With futuristic QR ring scanners and computer algorithms that determine the parcel’s collection point in a snap of a finger, staff can now collect all the items from the storage racks at a go and bring them to the sorting station – no more late or wrong deliveries!
Pick to Light System: the new and improved sorting process
Step 6: You can collect your orders from mama shops underneath your block any time
One reason why we love ezbuy so much is the convenience and flexibility granted to us with over 277 collection points scattered around the island. But there’s a catch – you’re only given a 20-minute window of opportunity for you to pick up your parcel, otherwise, be prepared reschedule your collection date or wait till the weekend.
On top of their 277 collection points, ezbuy has added a new series of self-collection stations called “ezCollection” points consisting of HDB mini-marts, mama shops, or spectacle shops for you to swing by and grab them on your way out or home.
Your packages will be dropped off at ezCollection points the moment it arrives in Singapore, so you’ll be able to collect your items even on weekday evenings, so long as the stores are open.
Bonus: Packages from “local marketplace” are collected along the way of delivery too
Things like Kleenex paper towels and cartons of canned drinks are among the many things you can also score for cheap from our local sellers on ezbuy
Image adapted from: ezbuy
Recently launched in June this year, ezbuy’s “local marketplace” is where you can get great deals on your regular neighbourhood purchases who have ready stocks on hand.
You can even receive the items you’ve ordered from the ‘local marketplace’ within 1-2 days! This is because every day, after packages are dropped off at their respective collection points in the morning, ezbuy staff will collect the online purchased items from local sellers and bring them back to the warehouse for unloading before another round of deliveries are made in the evening.
Mark your calendars for every upcoming sale there is
As the leading Taobao shopping agent in Singapore, ezbuy is constantly on the lookout for ways to improve its efficiency and speed of delivery. Now that you’re familiar with the back-end process of your parcel’s delivery, you’ll know exactly when to expect your items and how to beat the wait and get them faster!
This post was brought to you by ezbuy.