It’s October – if you’re not already thinking about Christmas, you’re late to the party because your customers definitely are.
And with 52% of shoppers expected to go online this year, compared to 30% in 2016, the opportunity for online retailers to cash-in on the holiday season has never been greater.
But this rise in Christmas eCommerce, brings with it an increase in customer expectations, particularly when it comes to delivery options.
According to research, 95% of holiday shoppers are basing their online purchasing decisions on delivery options alone. So, just to clarify; not price, or product selection, or how pretty your VM looks, but purely on whether you provide the delivery options they desire.
So the stakes are high for e-tailers who can’t deliver this Christmas literally.
So what, exactly, do your customer’s delivery expectations look like? We’re glad you asked:
- To encounter the right delivery options for their specific needs
- Not to pay over the odds for the services they expect
- To have the choice to reroute delivery, while in transit
- Delivery a convenient address, next day delivery, click and collect, or pick up from a convenient location
- Same day delivery options
- Simple and seamless options for both delivery and returns
- Multiple interactions to inform of delivery and returns progress
- The opportunity to reschedule delivery as they wish
Not the kind of Christmas wishlist we’re used to, but giving the people what they want needn’t be difficult – time to invest in the best delivery capabilities and your shipping ship-shape.
And lucky we know just the people for the job…
Here are three simple ways to make your delivery process shine (and how Shippit has you covered):
- Analyse customer metrics. What are your customers saying about your current delivery and returns process? This will give you key insights into how to make their experience better. As Shippit enables customers to rate their experience, leave a comment and pick a reason (Uber-style) and you can use this data-gold get it right every time
- Compare and contrast carriers. All carriers are not created equal. Different specialities include shipping speed, bulkier items, higher value items, or providing specific insurance policies. Savvy retailers work with a number of carriers and Shippit’s dashboard allows you to compare performance, customer satisfaction and speed, so you can pick the one that suits, on an order-by-order basis by letting our allocation engine do the thinking for you.
- Managing carrier relationships. Just like any business, your carrier depends on repeat business. As such, they need to be held accountable for poor performance and provide competitive rates. Shippit have established solid relationships, that can manage these aspects, taking that burden off you.
- Enable Same-day delivery. Stats from Amazon show that just by offering same-day delivery ( even if the customer doesn’t use it) makes that customer 20-30% more likely to purchase at checkout. So if you’re not offering same-day delivery right now, you might want to jot it down on the to-do list, because it’s fast (pun intended) becoming not just a nice to have, but a need to have.
Sounds simple enough, but why the urgency? Well, here’s a quick stat-fest to show why nailing your shipping process before the Christmas rush is imperative if you want to avoid the January blues.
According to Walker Sands’ 2017 report, 80% of shoppers put free shipping and 54% put fast shipping, as their top incentive to purchase more online.
So shipping can be directly affected basket size.
This study found 38% of participants are likely to never shop with a retailer again, because of unsatisfactory or unavailable delivery options
So shipping can directly affect repeat business.
UPS discovered that 46% would abandon carts if the shipping time was too long, or not provided.
So shipping can directly affect cart abandonment.
In fact, Foresters sum it nicely with this truth-bomb; “the cost, speed and convenience of delivery have a direct impact on repeat purchase, basket size, conversion rates and customer lifetime value”. Well said.
Delivery is not a set and forgets deal, expectations are evolving and you need to keep pace; today’s express delivery option will be tomorrow’s standard expectation.
For today’s ‘I want it all’ online customer, delivery and returns have become the defining moment of their online shopping experience – make it magical and you’ll stay ahead of the game. For now.