If you are selling physical products online, one of the most important decisions you can make is choosing the right courier service.
Your courier service company will provide the last touch between you and your customer. So no matter how well you have served your customer on your website, if your courier service does a bad job of completing the order, your customers may never return to buy from you again.
So the first thing you need to consider when you pick a courier service is: how reliable is it?
Will your customers get their products within the promised time frame?
If not, they may start to think of you as an unreliable seller and not buy from you again. Worse, they may even tell their friends not to buy from you too!
Though reliability is very important, another important thing you need to consider is cost. If your courier service company is highly reliable but expensive, you may not be able to make enough money from each sale to sustain your business.
So, even if you make your customers happy, you will have to shut your doors soon enough because you won’t be able to sustain it.
The key here is to pick a courier company that is reliable and affordable. Of course, the most reliable companies won’t be the most affordable and vice versa.
So as an online business owner, you will have to make your decision based on a compromise between cost and reliability.
But out of all the courier services available in Malaysia, which can offer you affordable shipping fees and reasonable reliability for delivery within Malaysia?
In this post, we will look at three of the biggest courier service companies in Malaysia – Poslaju, GDex and Skynet. We will compare them with one another to help you pick the best one for your business.
First, why are international courier services not considered?
Before we dive in, I’d like to address why I have not covered international courier services in this post.
I am excluding non-local courier services in this comparison guide because most non-local courier services’ rates for delivery are too expensive for small domestic deliveries within Malaysia.
Our goal here is to find the most reliable courier service at an affordable price. This is more practical for most online business owners.
Unless your products need special care and attention, most products can be delivered safely using local courier services.
With that out of the way, let’s have a look at what Poslaju has to offer:
For small shipments, Poslaju is the cheapest courier company in Malaysia. Unlike many other courier service companies, Poslaju uses flat rates when shipping between zones:
You can even opt for pre-paid shipping which can be both affordable and convenient.
The cost of Poslaju’s shipping is affordable for most small businesses.
Poslaju’s reliability depends on where you ship. If you are shipping within Klang, you can even get same day delivery:
But when you go outside of Klang in Peninsular Malaysia, at best your option would be next day delivery.
However, if you are shipping from Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah/Sarawak and vice versa, you can’t get same day or next day delivery. Although on the website it says 2-3 days delivery between Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah/Sarawak, from personal experience it normally takes 3-5 days.
While your customers in Peninsular Malaysia will be well served using Poslaju, your customers in Sabah/Sarawak will have to wait a little while longer.
The good thing is that with Poslaju, tracking is normally accurate and delays don’t last more than a few days. Poslaju’s delivery is generally reliable throughout Malaysia.
For the price you are paying though, this could be a reasonable compromise.
With over 1,000 pick up and drop off points all over Malaysia, Poslaju has the widest coverage in Malaysia. This means that no matter where you send your parcel, there is a high chance that there is a Poslaju nearby to help you deliver your orders.
Unlike Poslaju, GDex does not use a flat rate for shipments across Malaysia. In some cases, GDex’s shipping fees can be more than two times of Poslaju’s.
Reliability with GDex depends on the location. In some cases, delivery is fast and on time, but in some other cases, delivery can be delayed for weeks.
So before selecting GDex as your courier service, you need to check if the service in that particular area is up to standards. If not, your customers can get angry with you.
Compared to Poslaju, GDex’s coverage is smaller.
Like GDex, SkyNet also does not use a flat rate for shipments across Malaysia. In some cases, SkyNet’s shipping fees can also be more than two times of Poslaju’s.
The biggest benefit of using SkyNet is that it offers the fastest delivery between Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah/Sarawak.
While it may take Poslaju 3-5 days to deliver a parcel from Peninsular Malaysia to Sabah/Sarawak, it takes Skynet only 1-2 days to get the job done.
If you are delivering between Peninsular and Sabah/Sarawak, SkyNet can help you get your products delivered faster.
The downside is that like GDex, SkyNet’s reliability can also be location dependent.
The worst experience I had with SkyNet was when I delivered one parcel and SkyNet returned the shipment to me after saying they could not find my customer’s address.
This caused my customer a lot of frustration. Needless to say, that customer won’t be buying from me again 🙂
If the speed of delivery between Peninsular and Sabah/Sarawak is important to you, SkyNet can give you an advantage. But you would need to tolerate mishaps like the one I experienced above from time to time.
SkyNet’s coverage is also less compared to Poslaju.
Verdict: Which Should You Pick?
Picking a courier company for your online business is never easy.
In my opinion, you should not stick to just one courier service company. Here is what I do:
For shipping between Peninsular to Peninsular or Sabah/Sarawak to Sabah/Sarawak, I would choose Poslaju because it is cheaper and faster.
For shipping between Peninsular to Sabah/Sarawak, I would choose SkyNet for its speed.
Still Can’t Decide? Consider Using EasyParcel to Compare
If you still can’t decide on the courier service to use, you can consider using a consolidator website like EasyParcel to compare rates before shipping.
This way you will know exactly what you need to pay before you ship.
For example, if I wanted to ship a 0.5kg parcel from Selangor to Kuching, I would be able to check the rates across a few shipping companies:
As you can see, the member rate shipping fee varies from RM8.80 using Poslaju to RM25.20 using Airpak.
Other than being able to compare shipping fees across a few courier service companies in Malaysia, here are the other benefits of using EasyParcel:
You can enjoy pick-up services without being tied down to one company
Having a pick-up service can add a lot of convenience to your business. You do not need to go out to the nearest drop off location to deliver your parcels.
Unfortunately, if you want to enjoy this service, you would need to sign up as a contract customer with the courier service company.
For Poslaju, this means you need to pay an upfront deposit of RM1,000. If you want to use more than one courier service company, you would need to invest more than this to enjoy their pick-up services.
With EasyParcel however, you get to enjoy pick-up service from all their partner courier service companies without having to become a contract customer for each of them.
Every time you send a parcel with EasyParcel, your parcel will be picked up from you.
You don’t have to pay monthly fees
With EasyParcel, you do not need to maintain your account by paying on a monthly basis. All you have to do is buy credits and pay for your shipping from the credit.
EasyParcel offers many credit package options for you to choose from:
You can drop off at convenient Pgeon points
Pgeon points are appointed retail stores where you can drop off or pick up parcels. This can be something convenient if you or your customers are not located near a courier service pick-up or drop off office.
You can learn more about how Pgeon Pick Up points work by clicking here.
Note: At the moment, Pgeon pick up points are only available in Peninsular Malaysia.
You can generate consignment notes easily
With EasyParcel, it is easy to generate consignment notes for your shipping.
As long as your customer is already in your database, you can simply select them in the address book and prepare their consignment note in a few seconds.
Now that we have looked at the advantages of using EasyParcel, let’s look at some of the cons:
You can’t pick from all courier companies in Malaysia
EasyParcel does not include all courier companies in Malaysia.
At the moment, EasyParcel shipping partners are limited to Poslaju, Airpak Express, Skynet, Nationwide Express, SnT and DeliverLAH.
So say you want to ship using a courier service company that is not listed in EasyParcel, you would be out of luck. Non-local shipping companies such as FedEx and DHL are not on your list of choices when you use EasyParcel.
Your credits will expire after 1 year
One of the biggest disadvantages of using EasyParcel is that your credits will expire after one year. If you did not manage to use up all your credits, you will not be issued any refunds for your remaining credits:
Though so, you can still re-active your expired credits by buying top up credit:
Want to give EasyParcel a Try?
Click here to check out EasyParcel
(Free RM25 for shipping when you sign up)
Picking the right courier service company can make or break your business. The best courier service for your business is one which you can afford and delivers on time.
The best courier company for your business is one which can deliver to your customers on time at a cost that keeps your business sustainable.
If you are going for a moderate level of reliability at an affordable cost, Poslaju would be the best option for you. On the other hand,
If you can’t make up your mind on the courier service for your business, you can always use a consolidator service like EasyParcel to compare before sending your orders.
EasyParcel can offer you some benefits of being a contract customer with a courier service company but without the commitments.
In the end, what matters most is keeping your customers happy and making sure your bottom line makes sense.
Over to you: which courier company do you use for your online business? What do you love and hate about it? Share your experience in the comments below.
you have not yet comment about ninja van or mail boxes?
I have written a post about Ninja Van but not yet covered the mail boxes. Please check this article:
I believe your Poslaju/Skynet/GDex ranking order is rather unfair to GDex. I will share my first-hand experience from being a year-long Lazada seller with your readers here.
For a start, comparing the relative numbers of local branches can be misleading, as size can be a double-edges sword. With poor efficiency, it will end-up overwhelm daily operations instead.
That seems to be exactly what happened to Poslaju in 2017/8. The tell-tell signs are all over the place:
1. All local office phone-lines are almost never attended.
2. Pick-up “hotline” is a joke (if you wonder why it seems to be the only Poslaju number that is relatively easy to finally get hold of a human staff).
3. ALL deliveries that failed to reach the receivers will simply vanish, instead of returning to senders automatically. Trying to recover these parcels, you will be showered with all kind of red tapes, like showing this and that documents and filing this and that forms.
4. This one may just be a local phenomenon: their local Cheras branch looks like a riot scene during rush hours, an incredibly long queue can be found where receivers have to self-collect their parcels. It happens everyday.
Apart from these, there are the more commonly known issues:
A. KL to Alor Star can take 3-7 days
B. KL to KL almost never makes it in 1 working days.
For Skynet, the problem is a really nasty one, a VERY high rate of shipments disappeared into the thin air without a trace. Many many times higher compared to even Poslaju. Enough said for this courier,
GDex, although not perfect, is the overall best performer. Daily pickup service can be arranged online (takes less than 1 min). Sharp on time, never missed. And guess what, even come and collect on Saturday (must be the most well kept secret in the online trading scene).
KL to most part of the Peninsular (except the very rural area in Kelantan etc) takes 1 working day, 90% of the time. A record that beats Poslaju by miles.
Much lower rate of Failed Delivery. Effected parcels always returned to me automatically. Failed Deliveries usually happened with remote addresses. But in such cases, it cost me the sender nothing, as Lazada will bear the shipping cost, and I always get my parcels back.
So the reward of picking the right courier? Just take a look at my customer reviews here: lazada.com.my/shop/silicone100
Notice an exceptionally high proportion of “very fast delivery” comments?
Thanks for your comments. I would not say that it is unfair but mainly based on the criteria that I have set here. I believe ‘best’ is subjective to what your needs are like. I have selected Poslaju as my choice based on my personal experience, as you had based on yours. This is my sincere review and I am until now using Poslaju as my main courier after trying out both SkyNet and GDex. I have been a seller for almost 2 years.
GDex personally was the worst for me because I had a lot of items returned to me for failed delivery. I have lost a lot of customers thanks to GDex failed or highly delayed deliveries. There were even buyers who forced me to change couriers because of how bad it was. This caused me to have a very bad impression and stopped using it.
Nonetheless, as I mentioned in the article, the best courier would really depend on where you are based and where you are shipping to. Unfortunately for me, in Malaysia, there are no clear winners. Some branches of some couriers are better than others. There is no SOP as it appears. As sellers, we really do need to test and pick based on our own situation.
For your point on number of branches being misleading:
The number of branches is important for me because at one point, I had to drop off my parcels daily. Having a lot of branches or drop off points means that it is possible for people to be close to a Poslaju drop off point. Worse, what if the seller lives in an area where the nearest courier branch is 1 hour away and they can’t get pick up?
This, of course, doesn’t matter if you can get the pickup service, but I wouldn’t go as far to say that it is misleading. I never said Poslaju was the best because it had many branches. But objectively speaking, Poslaju, being our national courier, really does have a lot more branches than any other courier in the country. This may be important to some people, but not so important to others, like yourself.
On your points about Poslaju:
1. This is true and I never said that they had the best customer service compared to the GDex and SkyNet. At this point, I didn’t even bring it up because all the couriers I have tried to call do not pick up their phone. Neither Poslaju, SkyNet or GDex branches around my area ever pick up their phone. So fairly, this was not a point I brought up for comparison. In Malaysia, in general, I believe customer service is pretty dismal.
3. Personally I never had this problem with Poslaju or any other couriers. Failed deliveries are usually returned to me and the ones that have gone missing have been refunded with money. Of course, again, this may be branch dependent.
4. There are many ways to look at this. For me, this speaks more about the demand for Poslaju than anything else. As we both know, they already have so many branches and yet, they are all full. To me, this is mainly because e-commerce has expanded beyond what Poslaju had intended for their operations. Though they may need to grow their branches, I really don’t see this as being a poor efficiency, but instead a lack of capacity. Smaller couriers like Skynet and GDex may not face this problem merely due to their low demand. Their infrastructures have not yet been put to the test.
I have not had a good experience as a seller, but as a buyer, I agree with you that the service is quite good.
Also, as I mentioned in the article, the main thing that dissuades people about using GDex is its price.
It is costlier than Poslaju. For sellers with low margins, they may not be able to afford its services, no matter how great they are. For a cheaper rate, I think a lot of lower margin sellers would be happy to bear with some imperfections with Poslaju.
On fast delivery with GDex, I have the same experience with Poslaju. Shipping from EM to WM sometimes takes just 1 day and my customers are highly satisfied. I would say that since switching from SkyNet to GDex I’ve had an 80% increase in ‘Fast Delivery’ and ‘Customer Satisfied’ comments than before.
I wouldn’t say that this review is misleading or GDex should be placed on top and I have not been comprehensive.
I have because I have tested all three couriers personally and delivered at least 30 parcels each before switching.
But in the end, this is just my personal opinion. I don’t disagree with you and I do not advocate the use of Poslaju for all situations. For me personally, Poslaju is my choice 90% of the time.
For my readers, I always encourage them to read and then test for themselves. I think all reviews are personal opinions and people can make judgments for themselves through their own experiences. I also encourage people to sign up for consolidated courier services like EasyParcel for them to take advantage of pickup services while testing out different couriers to find the best one.
Hope this clarifies.
– Lu Wee
wow, glad to read the detailed & helpful reviews from both of you! TQ 🙂
Welcome 🙂 Glad it was helpful.
– Lu Wee
I’ve a bad experience with SKYNET lately on their staff handling my parcel, they broke the items and reject the claims! I’ve try to appeal the claim and they failed to accept it’s their negligence and try to push all the losses to the client. What a irresponsible COURIER SERVICES, HOW CAN CLIENT continue to trust your services??
Have you tried Delyva for cheaper courier services or MatDespatch for same day delivery?
The coverage was not extensive the last I checked. This is why I didn’t use these services.
Your research is well done. It's a pity that the research is not updated to reflect the current situation. Now is the right timing for such articles as these because lots of business is looking to explore this avenue to extend their business and lots of searches are into these topics.
Do give a sound off once you have updated your article.
Gdex been the worst.
my item take 3 day from china to hk to KL and clear custom, but GDEX take 7 day and still can’t deliver to my house.
they blame on weekend, this and that, now after full complaint they told me dunno where is my parcel.
I had tried Gdex, DHL, ABX and Citylink
My experience on Gdex.
Our company last time was appointed Gdex for courier service, but I had to said, they are really bad in the deliver the parcel especially deliver to the factory. As factory’s address most likely is Lot / PT. They are not willing to drive to the LOT but called us and said they can’t find the place or other excuse. At last, customer was mad and almost lost a customer. So disappointed on GDEX.
My Experience on DHL.
DHL at the moment still ok. But during RMCO, they misplace a parcel and did not deliver to our company. We had launch few time of complain to DHL via call and email as the item is not cheap. After few days, received their call and they had found the parcel. Then, the manager send the parcel individually to our company and apologize on the mistake. It is a good attitude but not a good image to me.
My experience on Citylink
So far I using citylink and no problem happened at the moment. The parcel and documents are deliver on next business day. Morning call for pickup, evening before off work, they come to pickup the item or documents already. I can say it quite efficient at the moment. Now they are upgrading their system which the customer able to arrange pickup via online.
Just my experience. There is no good or bad. But if the courier service company need to do well, I think services and attitude is very important