The basics of how shipment tracking works

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Written by Ecoparcel February 11, 2021

Many shipping companies allow their customers to track their parcels after they've been picked up by the courier, all the way until they arrive at the final destination. As advanced as these systems are, however, sometimes errors can still occur.

In case of a fault, not only may the sender be confused, but frustrated as well if the shipment takes far longer than it should have to be delivered.

In this article, we'll discuss the basics of how shipping tracking works for parcel companies and its common hurdles, as well as discuss our tracking process.

What is the purpose of a tracking system?

The main and most obvious goal of a parcel tracking system is to inform the sender with details about their shipment from the moment it's been picked up by the courier, till it reaches the destination point. This includes estimated delivery date and time, status and so on.

The whole system functions with the purpose of having an estimate of when delivery might occur by constantly monitoring the movement of the package from one place to another. All of this is of course, to ensure maximum comfort for clients for when they choose a particular courier firm.

How does tracking of parcels work?

Generating a barcode

The moment you order a shipment of your parcel, the company's website will generate a barcode for your parcel, which you will need to attach to it. This will be used to scan and report on your parcel as it travels between waypoints.

Scanning of the barcode

As the shipment travels between different delivery points, the couriers will scan the barcode each time. After each scan, the information updates itself on the courier's website and the customer will be able to see it.

Storage of data

Like we said, after each scan, the info is updated at the database. As such, the customer may then see updates statuses of their package.

As soon as the barcode is scanned, all the information related to the courier is stored in the tracking system, like, the time it left the courier agency (at seller's location) for delivery, where it came from, where it is destined to, etc.

Delivery of the product

As the parcel travels from one storage point to another,  each there will be an update in the database. The final updates will inform the user that the parcel has arrived successfully to the destination country.

How does parcel checking with Ecoparcel work?

At ecoparcel, we offer a delivery system that works in an identical way. After you've requested a quote, and choose one of our shipping partners' offers, you will get a generated ID number which you will then be able to use to track your shipment.

It should be noted, that even after a courier has picked up your shipment, no new info might appear in the first 24 hours, as most of our partners scan every package by hand. Afterwards, however, you will get regular updates until the package reaches its final destination.

To sum it up

Shipping tracking is a very common service that most couriers nowadays offer. It's based on a very simple principle of barcode scanning and automatic database updates and allows people to track their delivery all the way up to the final destination


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