Delivery Startup Doorman Adds Support For E-Commerce Returns

Doorman can be a useful service for people who hate missing deliveries. Now it can help you get those products in the mail again, too.

Rather than coming home from work to find a “missed delivery” slip, Doorman customers can set a delivery time between 6pm and midnight that’s convenient for them (packages get delivered to Doorman first, and then to the consumer). The new return service works in a similar way — you just schedule a pickup in that same time window.

CEO Zander Adell said this was a much-requested feature, particularly for customers who both shop and return regularly with online stores, leaving them with “all of these returns sitting in [their] house” until they found the time to schlep all the boxes to the UPS store. So Doorman started experimenting with making returns available to its $29 per month Gold Plan members last year, then rolled it out to all customers in the latest app update.

Adell noted that technically, Doorman customers can use the service for other types of shipping, not just returns — but returns are the most obvious fit for now, since you have to handle the packing and labeling yourself.

He also said the company has raised an additional $1.5 million in funding from Matrix Partners, Structure Capital, VGO Ventures and others, doubling the size of the $1.5 million seed round that we wrote about in June.

“This is a pretty capital-intensive business,” Adell said. “It’s not ‘hook a computer up to the internet and make money’ SaaS model. We really have to prove [to investors] that we can do this efficiently, and we have done that over and over again.”

Beyond allowing Doorman to expand geographically (it started in San Francisco, then recently launched in Chicago and New York City), the funding will also help it pursue more retail partnerships — Adell said it’s already working with mattress startup Casper to handle same-day deliveries in San Francisco.