Couriers are as in demand as ever as consumers demand speedy delivery.

As we note in our recent report “Retail Rebooted,” speedier delivery is coming to online ordering, and the pressure is on to deliver goods within hours. This means a new demand for couriers, some of whom will do both the shopping and the delivering. “Valets” for eBay Now track down and drop off items in the markets where the service is available; Fast Company recently tagged along with a Manhattan deliveryman. And last year a TechCrunch writer spent a few hours as a courier for Postmates, which delivers lunch, groceries or office supplies. PocketShop is a similar, London-based startup focused on groceries; its Pocket Shoppers “go through rigorous tests to discover who knows their Galas from their Golden Delicious, their Minstrels from Maltesers.” And in Chicago, the startup WeDeliver trains “delivery specialists” to work with local merchants.

Image credit: Postmates