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Post and parcel specialists are no doubt well aware of the likely increase B2C volumes for Christmas 2013, but will they be able to manage the pressures placed upon them by online retailers who are looking to drive even more sales this year?A Global Freight Solutions (GFS) report has highlighted that online retailers will this year be trying to generate more sales. With the likes of HMV and Jessops both going into administration earlier this year, it is clear that some areas of the high street are struggling as more people choose to buy their goods online.

Most carriers claimed that last year’s peak was a success and the increase in volumes was well managed, but how are online retailers going to ensure that consumer demands are met and parcels are delivered to customer expectations?

GFS has said that online retailers need to offer consumers more delivery options with prompter fulfillment, including options for returning items. It recommended retailers offer delivery methods including locker boxes and parcel shops as an example, but it also said that retailers should have “a portfolio” of carriers offering different services to provide a flexible service. But just how many of these different options are available to retailers?

There are now more delivery options than ever for online retailers to offer this new era of more demanding internet shoppers. With operators such as Hermes and CollectPlus offering parcel drop-off and collection in shops, ByBox offering locker box delivery and DPD offering a delivery window which can be changed to a more convenient time by the consumer, there are plenty of options available. The Hub believes that these both help with operators' capacity fears as well as give consumers the service they want.

Will operators be able to cope with the biggest peak ever in 2013? The Hub thinks that they are well-set to deal with retailers’ demands.