Study on the needs of postal service consumers

ANACOM has released the study "Needs of consumers of postal services", performed by the IMR - Instituto de Marketing Research (Institute of Marketing Research), which was awarded the work following a public tender.

The study identifies and assesses the needs of residential end-users in the postal sector in Portugal, in particular as regards any shortcomings in the provision of postal services which are useful to consumers and identifying components of the postal service which consumers may no longer value.

The study highlights the following:

a) The technological evolution brought by digital solutions is generating a strong contraction in postal correspondence traffic; this is not being offset by increases in postal parcel traffic resulting from greater take-up of electronic shopping. This scenario poses new challenges for postal operators, especially: stagnation of the competitive profile, reduction in operator profitability and a need to search for new solutions which optimise operational efficiency.

b) While 30.7% of the customers sent mail in the last 12 months, posting an average of 6 letters, the short-term trend shows signs of a decline.

c) Most citizens are users of postal services - in the last 12 months, 82.3% of respondents received a letter; these were sent mainly by companies (85.8%) and public bodies (81.1%).

d) On average, each user of the service receives 5.5 parcels. 60.6% show a tendency towards maintaining quantities. 25.2% increased quantities, mainly due to the increase in electronic purchases. 14.2% decreased quantities, mainly due to the effect of shipment costs and a reduction in electronic purchases.

e) Postal correspondence and parcel shipments are mainly processed through CTT - Correios de Portugal, although the range of operators used is greater in the case of parcels.

f) Consumers might accept solutions which do not entail a loss of advantages, but reject the implementation which result in a reduction in functionality.

This study, including its respective premises and conclusions, is the sole responsibility of its authors, and, in no way, commits or binds ANACOM to any position.