How Do Courier Services Track Packages?

May 16, 2020

A few years ago the number of parcels delivered reached over 87 billion. And that number has just continued to increase every year.


  • GPS tracking of your packages
  • Bar code scanning for true chain of custody
  • Electronic signature capture
  • Live time email notifications
  • Online portal to place and track deliveries
  • Automated integration with your applications
  • PHOTO verifications for packages

Shipping is such an important part of our daily lives, especially for businesses.

Having a dependable and helpful courier service is vital to the success of a company. Whether that is delivering legal contracts, crucial pieces of equipment, or samples for lab testing. Businesses rely on these services to get their jobs done.

One of the most helpful aspects of courier services is being able to track the packages you send. But how exactly is that done?

We’ve broken down the systems companies use to monitor their deliveries and make sure everything gets where it needs to go on time.

Client Web Based Order Entry & Online Tracking System

Tracking a package really starts at the very beginning in the online portal. This is where the item is ordered or the delivery is scheduled.

When this is done the digital footprints of the package begins.

From there the package’s whereabouts are always known to all parties involved; sending, receiving, and delivering. Everyone should have access to the tracking information after the online order has been created.

As a part of our delivery management process, we systematically track performance for:

  • On time pickup & delivery
  • Order accuracy

We also focus on tracking costs to stay within your budget. Our regular account management reviews sharing our performance and your costs set us apart from other delivery companies.

Every companies online ordering process will look a little different. But generally they all do the same thing in terms of monitoring progress.

Entering the Barcode System 

The most important thing that happens during the online setup in terms of tracking is the creation of a barcode.

A barcode is a series of parallel bars in different widths. This grouping is a unique identifier that can present the item’s information onto a computer when scanned. These scanning systems are used all over our daily life to produce and move information.

Once a package has a barcode, it has a unique identity within the tracking system. This holds all of its important information; where it came from, delivery address, contents, etc.

The barcode will be scanned at each location along its route to delivery. This ensures that the package indeed made it to each place, not just that it was supposed to.

Our enterprise delivery systems offer you:

  • GPS tracking of your packages
  • Bar code scanning for true chain of custody
  • Electronic signature capture
  • Email notifications of status of delivery
  • Online portal to place and track deliveries
  • Automated integration with your business applications
  • Picture verifications for packages

Barcode tracking keeps an eye on each parcel so that nothing gets lost. Through the scans the entire route can be seen.

Often each individual carrier will have their own unique scanning identity as well. So when the delivery person scans the barcode, the system knows who physically has the package. This gives another added layer of security.

This barcode tracking is also important for very sensitive materials that are being shipped. If the package needs to have a proven chain of custody log, barcode scanning can show who has had it, what times, if it stopped anywhere, and if it changed hands.

The barcode is really the essential piece to tracking a package.

Real Time GPS Monitoring

A unique tracking feature offered by a few companies is real-time GPS monitoring.

Once the specific delivery person scans the package’s barcode, its tracking information is linked the the carrier’s location. The sender or recipient can track where that carrier is and how close they are to delivering.

In traditional tracking through a barcode, the recipient will get an out for delivery notification. But that doesn’t give very exact information on when it will actually be delivered. This GPS tracking can give a much better estimate.

Confirmed Delivery

Another very important element of tracking packages through a courier service is confirming the delivery.

If you are sending the package, it can be a huge relief to know that what you sent made it for sure. This can be achieved in a few different ways.

Many customers opt for an electronic signature to be required at deliver. When the recipient signs for the package they are confirming that they did in fact receive the package.

These kind of electronic signatures are also required to keep the chain of custody log, which may be required for extra sensitive materials. The signature shows that they courier is no longer responsible for the package.

It’s not always possible for the recipient to be present at the time of delivery. So courier services may add a picture of the delivered package to their scanned data.

This allows the sender to have visual confirmation of the package’s location and an understanding of its location.

Lost or stolen delivered packages can be a huge problem for businesses, so having this extra confirmation step available is a big bonus.

High-Quality Courier Services

There are countless ways to send a package these days. But they aren’t all created equally. And choosing the right company to handle your shipping needs can make a huge difference.

Courier services allow you to control the quality of care that your packages receive on their way to their destination.

If you choose the right company, you can trust that the people handling your packages are responsible and professional. Those handling these deliveries have been fully trained in correct industry standards, whether that be HIPPA compliance or OSHA certified.

Running a business and handling major transactions is stressful enough. The logistics of sending packages just adds another layer to that overwhelm. But working with a courier service can ensure that things are being handled in the most efficient manner.

Have Confidence Through Tracking

It’s always a little stressful to drop something important in the mail. You just have to cross your fingers and hope it makes it where it needs to go in one piece.

This is generally why many businesses decide to use courier services to deliver their parcel packages.

Courier services take that guesswork out and give you confidence that you can depend on. Packages sent through these companies are handled more personally and can therefore have more detailed tracking.

If you are interested in getting started with a courier service, contact us today!

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