13. June 2022 | Press release

BRT: e-shopper numbers in Italy are growing, with new trends in delivery and purchasing profiles

The leading italian company in express transportation relaunches its customer service, with last mile deliveries and city branches covering the national territory, starting with Bologna


In line with the new growth dynamics in the e-commerce sector, as revealed by the DPDgroup's “E-shoppers Barometer 2021” research, the company is focusing on increasingly personalized, digital and widespread delivery, collection and return services.  Among the novelties are the enhancement of customer care, maximum customization of delivery services, including Out-of-Home, and the first Smart Urban Depot in Bologna, a city branch model that will be extended to other locations in Italy within a year. An Industrial Plan stretching to 2025, making the statement "BRT-Good at Reaching Everyone in Italy and all over the World” become a reality.


The e-commerce phenomenon continues to trend in all European countries, with Italy in the lead, marking a + 8% increase in the number of e-shoppers who made a purchase for the first time in 2021. Italy ranks 7th in Europe for the number of packages received, with very high percentages of recurring purchases in 46% of regular e-shoppers, which amounts to 14.8% of all purchases made online with an average of 42 annual transactions. A characteristic of the identikit of Italian e-shoppers - identified in the 3 profiles of "Aficionado", "Epicurean" and "Eco-selective", and who mainly buy 3 categories of products, namely books, beauty and clothing - is a greater degree of loyalty than the European average and the choice of a trusted retailer based on the reputation of the platform and a more positive, user-friendly shopping experience. This aspect is particularly influenced by the ease of the return process, with which 75% of Italian e-shoppers appear to be satisfied compared to 55% Europeans. However, expectations for improvement of the delivery service remain high, with 84% preferring it to be carried out directly to their home, but with 3 key options to ensure satisfaction: choice of the day and time of delivery, knowledge of the time in advance, and real time information on delivery. The percentage of Italians who want home delivery is however decreasing, in favour of Out-of-Home solutions, a delivery model featuring flexibility in terms of time, place and convenience for recipients. BRT adopts this system through its over 5,400 BRT-fermopoint collection points. This is the overall picture of BRT, the first Italian Express Transportation Company, that emerged from the "E-shoppers Barometer 2021" research carried out by DPDgroup, the largest European operator in the sector, of which the historic Bologna-based group has been an integral part since January 2020.

In BRT’s view, having now completed the transition from a family business (the "Bartolini courier") to a global industrial enterprise within the DPDgroup / GeoPost network, e-commerce is increasingly becoming a driving force for economic growth and innovation in terms of opportunities for hybridisation of business models and access to global markets, with potential for vertical development, at least in the medium term.

Provided, however, that the end customer is truly at the centre of the system, with increasingly tailor-made services and high added value. On the business side, first and foremost this means interactively managing and controlling the shipment with a direct and increasingly real-time dialogue. On the end user side, the challenge will increasingly concentrate on providing so-called "last mile" solutions with ever greater options for delivery, collection and returns, even outside the home, with maximum flexibility in terms of time, delivery options and dropping mode.


In line with these trends, BRT has activated and implemented a wide range of ad hoc services and projects. Among the novelties is the new myBRT - recipient platform, which allows the user to manage the delivery of their shipments in complete autonomy and flexibility, with a suite of services designed to ensure maximum flexibility. There is also the enhancement of Customer Care following greater technological investments, to which can be added the advantage - always a distinctive feature of BRT - afforded by management of the service being entrusted to its own specialised internal staff, with a consequent considerable reduction in times for responding to and processing a particular request. The "Plugin-BRT-fermopoint" solution, now available on the main platforms used by Italian companies - from PrestaShop to WooCommerce - is much appreciated by e-commerce customers, and enables online buyers to collect shipments at their own leisure, if so desired, at the network of BRT-fermopoint collection points, with a display of the location on the map, as well as the opening hours and days.

The integrated system of options put in place for recipients is also moving in this direction: first of all, advanced messaging with a 2-hour delivery window, real-time notifications via text message and email, myBRT to track the shipment in real time, the option of delivery direct to your home or apartment on whatever floor for packages of any size, and the so-called “In flight option” which allows you to change the date and place of delivery after the shipment has departed, including the BRT-fermopoint network among the out-of-home delivery options.

This network was created with the intention of enacting a new delivery model that allows you to choose between news-stands, tobacconists, stationeries, bars and other small businesses as a place for collection and delivery. The service is delivered in a more convenient way and with far more flexible hours, with the customer being able to choose the BRT-fermopoints open even on weekends, late in the evening or round the clock. In addition to the advantages in terms of flexibility, process rationalization and environmental sustainability, due to a reduction in the number of handling sections in the last mile, the system has interesting repercussions on traffic to local points of sale, as a support to the local economy. The BRT-fermopoint network is growing at a very rapid pace: since the beginning of the year, about 100 new points have been added every month, for a total of 5,400 to date throughout Italy.

The widespread nature of the service, encompassing everything from large metropolis to small suburbs, has always been the strength of BRT, which the company has refined, starting from the initials of its name, into a true and proper declaration: “Bravi a Raggiungere Tutti”, Italian for “Good at Reaching Everyone”. A commitment also fulfilled by ensuring the company’s physical presence right across the country.


With this in mind, the first Smart Urban Depot came into operation in Bologna, a centre entirely dedicated to the customer where you can send and collect your packages, check the quality of the products received on site - or try them on directly, in the case of clothing, in comfortable internal spaces - and make any necessary returns. The Smart Urban Depot BRT, located in the city centre in a strategic area containing offices and companies of various types (Via Irnerio 23a), is used for low emission delivery, within the framework of the Green Strategy adopted by the company, thanks to the provision of a fully green fleet consisting of Cargo Bikes equipped with mini-containers for the transport of goods. This is the first example of a system of “city branches”, launched in Bologna and to be extended within the year to other medium-large cities across Italy.

With 200 branches, 35 parcel hubs, 13 messaging hubs, 10 logistics facilities and 5,400 BRT-fermopoint collection and delivery points, BRT closed 2021 very positively in terms of key figures and operational structure. In 2021 alone, it delivered 227 million parcels, with 22,000 people serving over 70,000 customers every day, and with a turnover of EUR 1,775 million (+ 14% over 2020).


“Our commitment is to follow each customer, taking care of every need and at every stage of the process with increasing attention and anticipating needs as much as possible,”

commented Dalmazio Manti, CEO of BRT.

“We are able to transport any type of product, weight or volume to any part of Italy and well beyond the European borders, from the smallest village to the biggest cities, with a totally personalized service offered to all major business segments. The Industrial Plan stretching to 2025 will enrich this trajectory with new assets, further enhancing the widespread nature of our network, the digitization of processes, and the improvement of our customer experience, which will mean consolidating our B2B position and growing ever more strongly in B2C e-commerce.”



About BRT

BRT is a DPDgroup company providing wide-ranging and reliable express courier services, inclusive of outsourced logistics solutions, for the management of different types of products in Italy, Europe and the world. The company employs more than 22,000 people. Our extensive presence in Italy takes the form of 200 branches, 35 parcel hubs, 13 freight hubs and 10 logistics facilities, and over 5400 BRT-fermopoint pick-up and drop-off points. In financial year 2021, BRT SpA generated a turnover of over EUR 1,775 million (1,557 million in 2020).

DPDgroup is the largest network of express courier services in Europe: a business that combines technology, innovation and knowledge of the local markets to provide its customers and recipients with a flexible and tailored service. With more than 120,000 delivery experts, and a network of more than 70,000 collection Pickup points, it delivers 8.4 million parcels every day (2.1 billion per year), with record economic results in 2021 of EUR 14.7 billion in revenues and a growth of 14% over 2020.

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