A question we often get asked is: what’s so different about Gophr when compared to every other on-demand delivery service out there?

Well, most other on-demand delivery tech companies out there are B2C delivery solutions, usually focused on delivering food. This requires a totally different approach to the market sector we are focused on; traditional B2B courier services.

In B2C, you generally deal with food deliveries. For obvious reasons, food needs to be delivered immediately. The courier will go to the restaurant, pick up the food while it’s still hot and go straight to the delivery point before it has a chance to get cold. Although perfect for this sector, it does lead to an inefficiency problem which is the #1 nightmare of traditional courier company; ‘dead miles’.

Dead miles problem

Difference between food delivery and traditional courier services

“Dead miles” are miles travelled that have not been paid for by a customer. A dispatcher’s (a.k.a. controller’s) job at courier company is to drive efficiency by linking up jobs going in similar directions to cut as many dead miles as possible. All whilst still hitting their customers required pick up and delivery deadlines.

On top of these service requirements you need to be able to track how much a courier is carrying, versus what he has capacity for.

There are more variables to this, but for simplicity’s sake let’s just stick with those four core principles: distance, direction of travel, deadlines, and volumetric capacity.

We built the Gophr platform to be a B2B delivery solution from the ground up, with these core principles driving the entire system in real-time.

Gophr’s platform takes into account all of the current couriers working on the system, their direction of travel, pick up and delivery deadlines, as well as current and future consignment loads versus their stated capacity. It uses the totality of this information to then choose the most optimal courier for any job at the time it’s required. The system doesn’t just do this at the point before it sends the notification to the most optimal courier, but also during the entire life cycle of any given job.

This opens up a whole world of opportunities, particularly at scale. Both in driving efficiencies in real-time, and greater flexibility in how any item can be delivered.

This is where we see Gophr making a real difference going forward. Not just to couriers and customers, but any business that has a fleet that could do with be optimised for greater efficiency.

We’ve not done one of these in a while. Mainly because we’ve been hard at work behind the scenes building awesome stuff and getting ready for what’s coming. More on that in the coming weeks/months.

For now, suffice to say we’ve just released a major new update to our desktop booking app that gives you more access to info around your job and your courier than ever before, so you know exactly what your courier is doing and when.

We were told that this was a very bad idea, and would only result in more complaints and customer service issues. So we only released it to a handful of you, then 10% a week later all the way up to 50% last week. Given we’ve had only positive feedback we’ve decided to put it on general release …at least until the point that everyone starts kicking off as initially predicted, but we’re feeling pretty good about this not happening. If you need to get a hold of us just hit us up on Live Chat anyway.

So why is this update any good?

Well, everything looks a bit smarter for starters, but here are more details:

  • Total oversight on courier jobs: more info and context on what is happening with your courier, and their pick ups and deliveries. You also get a snazzy animation to show you their route and direction of travel.
  • ETA’s are back!: Now that we are giving you full oversight over your couriers pick ups and deliveries, we can now bring back ETA’s as it you now have context as to why ETA’s can jump up or down all of a sudden.
  • Improved menu drawer: so it’s a bit more obvious what section you are in. It also takes up less space so you can look at more of the map as well as our brand new…
  • Courier info drawer: we should probably have a sexier name for this feature but it is what it is. Snazzy new drawer on the right hand side which houses info on average acceptance times for vehicles on that day once you book, and then once your courier accepts you get all their contact details, as well as info on when your job was accepted, picked up and delivered. If you cancel a job we ask you why in here too. Helps improve the service and that.
  • More couriers everywhere!: We now display our couriers at all times. We’ve also improved the courier icons so they now no longer look like grey nipples. They look more like tyres …mainly because all our vehicles have them.

As ever, if you have any feedback do let us know. You can always hit us up on live chat. We love hearing from you.

Check out our new desktop app here

Okay. Let’s get straight to it. Shiny new website
  • ‘Get a Quote’ now pull through to booking so if you get a quote on the homepage you don’t have to enter it again on booking
  • new dedicated Business section in which we talk about our Commercial API and integration capabilities (sexy, we know)
  • the sexy video background with the drone shots that we used to get lots of compliments on is no more (booo!) It was a little heavy on data so we got rid
  • dedicated courier section
  New, improved booking site
  • The feature almost everyone has been asking us since day one: ‘Favourites’ is now live! Every time you book you can save an address, contact name or business as a favourite for later use direct on the booking screen
  • Minor improvements to the ‘Book a job’ flow. We’ve moved stuff around to make it more useful. We also added a label specifically for ‘floors’ within buildings as entering the floor number ahead of the address would make Google Maps freak out a bit.
  • Improved ‘Team’ section to bring it into line with ‘Favourites’ so it all feels nice and tidy and makes sense as a unified whole
  • Improved ‘Active jobs’ section so you can tab between active jobs and draft jobs
  • Improvements to ‘Job History’ section so you can get access to your invoices and reports more easily
  • Minor changes to the ‘Profile’ section that were annoying Seb so had to go – ‘Payment details’ section is now a lot tidier, particularly if you have lots of teams and lots of payment methods. No longer looks like a really long list of random letters and numbers
  How to use the new Favourites feature When you hit the ‘favourite’ star we’ll prompt you to define which category you want to save your favourite under. Next time you book simply type in the address you are looking for and your favourites will come in up in your list of options ahead of Google Maps search results. Your five most recently used favourites will also sit under the search bar for your use. That’s it! Dead easy. Let us know what you think by getting in touch at yo@gophr.com or by hitting the chat button on the site. We have more announcements coming over the next few weeks.

It’s been an exciting year at Gophr. We’ve raised money from our investors Yonder and Beyond, we’ve built the best business courier service booking system in the world (we think!) and we’ve assembled an incredibly capable and diverse team. Together with you, our couriers have performed thousands of deliveries. We’re now getting ready to carve a name out for ourselves in the industry.

We recently became the UK’s first and only Living Wage accredited courier company, which we’re incredibly proud of. The courier industry has been torn by wage and treatment disputes for years, cumulating in recent protests at some very large companies. We’re proud to put a marker down and say the industry deserves better. In fact, we’ve insisted on it since Gophr was first formed.

Until now, our deliveries have been carried entirely by pushbikes and cargo bikes. This has kept our delivery area relatively small. Our cargo bikes can take 70Kg of weight no problem, but we know this has restricted what we can carry tremendously.

Today, we’re announcing the introduction of our van couriers and motorcycle couriers! Since our launch in March, we’ve had daily requests to help you move bigger and bigger items and we’re pleased to say we can do this starting today.

Vans and Motorbikes

We’ll be introducing various sizes of vehicles including scooters, motorcycles and both small and large vans. We’re confident we’ll be able to take just about every item you might want to send by courier and for anything else, let us know and we’ll see what vehicles we can introduce to serve you in the future (speedboat on the Thames maybe?).

Going forward, you’ll be able to book vans and motorcycles through the same familiar interface you currently book push-bikes through. This time however, you’ll be able to select the most relevant vehicle to your package and we’ll adjust your quote and ETAs automatically. As you’ve come to expect, we’ll also made some small changes to our size/weight guidelines in our UI to help you gauge your package size and weight for the new vehicles too.

With the Christmas period coming up, we hope we’ll be your first choice for delivery. Got special requirements over the festive season? Drop us a line on our live chat button, or at yo@gophr.com and we’ll be happy to work with you as best we can to make sure your plans go smoothly. You can reach us via the above methods for any issues at all.

The Gophr Team

 
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