Last-Mile Trends: Sustainability, Ship-from-Store, and Technology

Last-Mile Trends: Sustainability, Ship-from-Store, and Technology

Carl Addoumieh

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Last-mile delivery refers to the journey of the goods sold and delivered, starting from the shop or warehouse to the doorstep of the customer’s address. The growing demand for fully integrated omnichannel retailing is one of the main driving factors for innovation and a shift from the traditional last-mile delivery. 

As a business, you are expected to provide a proper customer journey online and offline, and the last-mile delivery is an essential part of that journey. So, what are the trends that will help you stay on top of your market? Our team put together five current trends that Packaly can help you maintain.

Clean air zones

According to the World Economic Forums (WEF), emissions from last-mile deliveries will grow by 32% if no immediate steps are taken. Such studies have lead cities across Europe to implement clean air zones or CO2-neutral areas. Clean air zones are specific areas that the government has deemed highly polluted or a pollution threat where only a particular amount of emissions are allowed.

Clean air zones have proven a challenge in the last-mile delivery providers. Not meeting the standards set by the government could lead to strict penalties. As more zones pop up around Europe, traditional last-mile companies face the challenge of going green to maintain their market shares.

Packaly provides CO2-neutral last-mile deliveries only and complies with all environmental regulations. Sustainability is not a feature for Packaly’s last-mile but is a part of Packaly’s identity.

CO2-neutral transport modes

Accelerated by clear air zone initiatives and the apparent need for a change in the last-mile industry, companies are looking for new, CO2-neutral transport modes. No pollution and noise are the main two goals of the electric fleets and sustainable fleets last-mile companies offer.

The same WEF study has found that last-mile causes around 21% traffic congestion in the cities, leading to increased emissions and noise pollution.

At Packaly, we believe in leaving a green trace everywhere we go. We only allow bikes, focus on limiting our emissions output, and aim to eliminate any source of emissions throughout the whole last-mile process.

Smart routing

Routing is a challenge that makes or breaks the last-mile experience. Efficient routing does help not only the delivery companies but also has a direct impact on your business. With smart routing, you can:

  • Send multiple parcels at a time

  • Streamline the last-mile

  • Scale-up faster

  • Be more sustainable

As a tech-driven last-mile delivery company, we have developed our multi-drop algorithm that allows smarter, more efficient routing, cutting delivery times, and processing more parcels.

Ship from store

Accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, ship from store is an integral part of a successful omnichannel strategy. Ship from store means that you ship directly from your brick and mortar store to your customer’s door with no fulfillment center or warehouse involved. 

To ship from store, you need your brick and mortar stores to become a dark store or a micro (urban) hub, where your store itself fulfills both physical and eCommerce sales. Read our guide on how to turn your store into a dark store. Some benefits of ship from store are:

  • Reduced costs

  • Fewer markdowns

  • Less process time

  • Faster delivery

  • Online growth with existing physical infrastructure

  • Work with your local community

Try our ship from store calculator

Local support

Local support is not a new trend. However, the accelerated growth of ship from store and local community support during the COVID-19 pandemic has made this an irreversible fact. 71% of shoppers say they prefer to shop at businesses near their living address, whether international, local, big, or small.

As local support becomes more evident, alternative inner-city shipping is replacing the traditional inter-city posts, with models such as ship from store are becoming more popular. 

Read our case study on how LUSH boosted its eCommerce sales by reaching local customers.


It is evident that sustainability is on top of all trends as we discover the major role of last-mile in our cities’ pollution. From the sustainable drive and the apparent need for an alternative from the traditional shipping methods and with the support of new and innovative technologies, Packaly proves to be the last-mile partner your business and customers need.

Packaly only ships sustainably using a fleet of electric bikes to help you reach your local customers through shipping from store to door. Sign up to Packaly’s Delivery Dashboard in 4 easy steps and start shipping sustainably.