Delivery Attempted: What Does It Mean?

by | May 23, 2022 | Blog, Industry Insights

Delivery Attempted: What Does It Mean?

One of the questions that most consumers grapple with is this: what does ‘delivery attempted’ mean? And rightly so.

After all, a whopping 8% of all domestic first-time package deliveries fail. And sometimes, couriers deliver items only to find the recipient absent. When that happens, they leave an attempted delivery notice or place packages on the doorstep. Sadly, that often leads to stolen deliveries and packages, an issue that 35% of Americans have experienced.

We’d like to discuss attempted deliveries. If you’ve encountered this term and wonder what it means and why it happens, you’re in the right place. This article is for delivery managers and consumers. If you belong to either category, read on and pay attention.

Let’s get started.

What Does Attempted Delivery Mean?

Delivery attempted means a courier has attempted to deliver a package or mail to the intended recipient but, for some reason, was unable to complete the delivery. There could be various reasons the delivery failed to go through, such as an unavailable recipient and an incorrect or incomplete address.

Sometimes, a courier may leave a notice indicating they attempted to deliver the package. An attempted delivery notice may provide a phone number that the recipient can call to arrange a different delivery time, or it may instruct the recipient to go to a local post office or courier facility to retrieve the package.

Generally, when a delivery attempt is unsuccessful, the courier may return the package to the sender or take it to a local center. The staff will hold it until the recipient can pick it up. In other cases, the delivery company may charge a fee for an additional delivery attempt or for holding the package at a facility.

What Should a Recipient Do After Getting an Attempted Delivery Notice?

After getting an attempted delivery note, recipients need to do several things. These include: 

Find More Details in the Issued Notice

A delivery attempted notice should include information about why the delivery was not successful and what the recipient needs to do next. For example, the notice may indicate that the delivery person could not reach the consumer at your home or in the office.

Customers should thoroughly scrutinize their attempted delivery notices to understand their position and the solution to their issue.

Call or Email the Sender or the Delivery Company

Consumers should contact the sender or the delivery company if the attempted delivery notice doesn’t provide enough information. The same applies when recipients have any questions or concerns. That is advisable because either of the mentioned parties is better positioned to provide more information and the best solution for the issue at hand.

Try to Reschedule the Delivery

Depending on the reason for the failed delivery, a customer may be able to reschedule the delivery to suit their needs and preferences. For example, if the delivery person cannot reach a recipient at home, the latter may be able to arrange for the package to be delivered to a different address, such as their workplace or a friend’s house.

Collect the Package

If the attempted delivery notice indicates that the recipient needs to pick up their package, they should follow the instructions provided. That may involve going to a designated location, such as a post office or a delivery company’s office, and presenting identification.

Check for Additional Fees

In most cases, recipients that need to pick up their package after an attempted delivery and those who need to reschedule the delivery incur additional fees. With that in mind, consumers should check the delivery attempted notice or contact the sender or delivery company to find out if there are any additional fees they need to pay.

Leave Specific Instructions

If consumers are away from home to receive their package, they should consider leaving delivery instructions for the courier service provider. Their message can include instructions to leave the package with a neighbor, behind a bush, etc.

By following these steps, a consumer should be able to receive their package even after an attempted delivery. Most importantly, a recipient should contact the sender or the delivery company if they have concerns or need assistance.

What Can Lead to a Failed Delivery Attempt?

The most common causes of failed delivery attempts include the following:

  • Incorrect or Incomplete Address: An incorrect or incomplete address is one of the most common reasons for a failed delivery attempt. That could include mistakes in the street name or number, the city or state, or the zip code. If the delivery person is unable to find the correct address, they will not be able to deliver the package.
  • No One was Home to Receive the Package: If a consumer is not home to receive their package, the courier may leave a notice indicating that a delivery attempt was made. Most don’t leave the package due to the risks of theft and tampering.
  • The Package was Too Large for the Delivery Location: If the package is too large to fit through a recipient’s mailbox or in their front door, the delivery person may not be able to deliver it. In this case, the consumer may need to arrange for the package to be picked up at a designated location or delivered to a different address.
  • Signature Required: Packages like pharmaceuticals, firearms, and hazardous materials may require a signature upon delivery. The courier can’t leave the item if no one is available to sign for it. In this case, the consumer needs to follow the instructions provided in the attempted delivery notice to arrange for the package to be delivered or picked up later. 
  • Bad Weather or Natural Disaster: In some cases, adverse weather conditions or natural disasters may prevent delivery from being successful. For example, if there is a snowstorm or a hurricane, the courier may be unable to deliver packages safely. When that happens, the consumer may have to wait for the weather to improve to get their deliveries.

By understanding the common causes of failed delivery attempts, consumers and couriers can take steps to prevent them from occurring. That is why the factors we’ve outlined above are indispensable.

DMS: Can You Use It to Avoid Attempted Deliveries?

Yes. You can use delivery management software (DMS) to keep attempted deliveries at bay. Simply put, DMS is a digital tool that enables organizations to effectively plan, manage, optimize, and carry out deliveries.

Delivery management software alleviates attempted deliveries by ensuring that courier drivers and consumers receive timely notifications on the status of the packages. That way, customers make arrangements beforehand, and drivers do their jobs with little to no hiccups.

Besides reducing attempted delivery instances, these systems also:

Improve Efficiency

Delivery management software can help streamline and automate various tasks, such as routing and scheduling deliveries, tracking vehicles and packages, and generating reports. In addition automation is key to reducing human-related errors and improving the overall efficiency of the delivery process.

Plus, quality DMS systems facilitate real-time data transfers. And that helps the couriers rectify many delivery issues on-site, consequently reducing redeliveries.

Enhanced Customer Service

With delivery management software, companies can easily provide real-time tracking information to customers and keep them updated on the status of their orders. That can help improve customer satisfaction, more so because 90% of consumers actively track their orders.

What’s more, DMS allows courier drivers to communicate with consumers. That feature significantly boosts the rapport between customers and your brand.

Better Resource Utilization

By using delivery management software, businesses can optimize routes and schedules, thereby ensuring that vehicles and staff are put to good use. That facilitates the reduction of fuel costs and increases productivity.

Remember, route optimization alone can cut fuel consumption by approximately 20%. Delivery managers can also use this element to set goals, measure performance, and, ultimately, boost driver accountability and productivity.

Enhanced Security

Delivery management software can help couriers deliver packages to the right address. That is particularly important for businesses that handle sensitive or valuable items. Moreover, some systems allow users to set automatic alerts that remind consumers of their packages. That ensures no item stays out for too long, which attracts unwanted attention.

In summary, delivery management software can help businesses improve efficiency, improve customer satisfaction, and effectively utilize resources. These and many other benefits lead to immense cost savings, increased productivity, and happier consumers.

Delivery Scams: What are They and How Consumers Can Prevent Them?

Unfortunately, the woes associated with deliveries don’t start and stop at failed attempts. Sometimes, scammers try to dupe consumers into releasing priceless information or believing they missed their packages using fake delivery attempts and scams.

Luckily, there are several ways that consumers can protect themselves from fake delivery attempts and ensure that they are only receiving legitimate packages. These include:

Boost Security Measures

One of the most effective tactics consumers can use to avoid fake delivery attempts involves choosing a delivery option that requires a signature or additional identification.

For example, as a customer, you can ask the delivery company to hold your package at a local pickup station and only release it after you’ve signed. That is highly likely to deter unauthorized personnel from receiving your package.

Checking the Sender’s Information

Before accepting a package or delivery, consumers should check the sender’s information and verify that it is legitimate. Suppose you, a package recipient, don’t recognize the company at your doorstep.  In that case, do a quick online search to learn more about them. Also, contact the original sender and ask all pertinent questions.

Using Tracking Information

Most delivery companies let consumers track their packages. The good news is that it can be a useful tool for verifying the authenticity of a delivery.

When customers have tracking information for a package, they can regularly refer to it to ensure that the courier delivers their package to the correct address. Moreover, they can use the information to zero in on discrepancies and contact the delivery company for clarification.

By following these simple steps, consumers are better positioned to protect themselves from fake delivery attempts and ensure they receive nothing but legitimate packages.

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Tell-Tale Signs of Fake Delivery Notifications

Let’s sign off with common signs of fake delivery notifications.

  • Incorrect or Unfamiliar Sender: One of the obvious signs of a fake delivery notification involves an unfamiliar sender’s email address or a phone number that doesn’t match the official contact info provided by a company.
  • Typos and Grammatical Errors: Reputable companies rely on professional marketing and customer service departments. That means their teams proofread all emails and other communications. So, if a delivery notification contains typos or grammatical errors, it’s likely from a malicious entity with little experience.
  • Request for Personal or Financial Information: Every consumer should note this. Delivery notifications should not ask for invaluable personal or financial information, such as a customer’s credit card details or social security number. If a notification includes a request for such data, chances are high that it’s a scam.
  • Urgent or Threatening Language: Most scammers use urgent or threatening language to pressure their victims into acting quickly without second thoughts. For example, a fake delivery notification might claim a package will be destroyed unless the recipient acts immediately. Consumers should keep an eye out for such unscrupulous tactics.

Consumers should be cautious when they receive any unexpected communication, especially if it revolves around submitting personal data. If, as a recipient, you’re not sure whether a delivery notification is legitimate, use the contact information provided on the sender’s official website to confirm the status of your delivery.

Also, keep track of your online orders and use the information to compare any notifications you receive with your records.

We Can Help You Avoid Attempted Deliveries

Attempted deliveries can tarnish the relationship that a brand has with its customers. Moreover, they lead to issues like fuel wastage and chargebacks, negatively impacting a business’s bottom line.

Fortunately, Elite EXTRA can help you avoid attempted deliveries and associated problems. Our platform offers the best delivery management software with features designed to automate numerous processes and optimize delivery routes. Visit our website today to learn more about delivery management systems, or contact us for more information.


Ben Halverson

Ben Halverson


Ben is the Marketing Director at Elite EXTRA. Over the past 15 years, Ben has experienced an array of business jobs, tasks and experience. One of his guilty passions is buying and selling businesses. In his free time, Ben enjoys spending time on the lake, in a hockey arena or gym and playing golf.

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