Giving consumers diverse, delivery options instils confidence in your brand resulting in greater sales, retention, and customer satisfaction. Whether your offering includes a free-and-easy returns policy, or same and next-day delivery, expectations around online shopping have skyrocketed, to the extent that if you’re not offering a particular delivery option, your sales will suffer. You might even relate to this yourself when making an online purchase; if what you need isn’t being offered, it’s dead easy to abandon ship and shop elsewhere, isn’t it? In short, delivery in 2018 is “make or break” for customers, so make sure you’re giving them options.

The Benefits of Having Multiple Delivery Options

  1. A decrease in shopping-cart abandonment

The case for offering multiple delivery options has never been stronger. In a Metapack survey, half of the shoppers questioned admitted to abandoning online shopping carts because the delivery choices on offer were unsatisfactory or did not meet their needs. You can probably guess what happened next. As high as 60% of these consumers opted to buy from another retailer that did offer delivery in line with their needs.

  1. An increase in conversion/sales

Fact: More shipping options means higher sales. A recent study found that of the 800 retailers asked, 86% said that they’ve seen an increase in sales as a result of adding more shipping options at checkout. It stands to reason that consumers view checkout choices as a necessity if they’re going to purchase with you.

Let’s face it, we live in the age of “I want it now” meaning convenience is key. You may have already lost shoppers due to a lack of options at checkout. To keep your customers happy (and likely to return), assorted shipping options might include, weekend delivery, 3-hour shipping, or even click-and-collect, which allows buyers to pick up an order in store. Without implementing these, traditional retailers will quickly fall behind more competitive customer-centric sellers.

  1. Delivery choice builds brand differentiation and loyalty

As we outlined in a previous post, delivery now defines who people shop with. Almost two-thirds of consumers say they buy – and with greater frequency – from eCommerce sites that offer a delivery experience that is: faster, easier, fault-free and totally transparent. These sellers will be the ones to inspire brand differentiation and loyalty.
It pays to stay abreast of what the customer wants, and monitor this as it evolves. Indeed, 95% say they will potentially go elsewhere if a retailer fails to offer their desired delivery option, according to research.

How to Do It Right

Now that you know why offering multiple delivery options is crucial in remaining competitive in today’s retail space, here are our key points in how to do it right.

What’s the point in having attractive options when they’re not highly visible to customers?  A Metapack study reveals that 77% of shoppers expect delivery options to be displayed on the product page, so they know upfront what they’re options are.

For customers who want home delivery, allow them to select a day and at a time that suits their schedule. Whether this is after hours, weekends, or within a certain delivery window, this forms the key to making delivery work within their busy lifestyle.

And your just job doesn’t end when the parcel ships. There is also a keen demand for having options for where it gets delivered to and when, whilst the parcel is still in transit. According to this survey, 29% of eCommerce buyers had changed the delivery date or location of their order post after it had been sent; a further 50% said if this option had been available to them, they would have used it.

In Australia, the value of flexible delivery is growing as 62% of consumers consider the ability to change delivery in-transit to be a key factor (redirecting to a new address or change in speed).

Rest assured your returns policy is getting a read before a customer completes their order. It’s not just about delivery options, having return shipping options is also key and can include posting via a post box, pick-up via courier or in-store return, meaning for retailers with a bricks-and-mortar store, customers might wish to return an item in person at any location.

Key takeaways

  1. As behaviours in eCommerce markets evolve, convenience and personalisation are top of mind for consumers.
  2. By providing up-to-date, available delivery options at the point of purchase or even the product page, retailers can build brand differentiation and loyalty using personalised delivery options – including home delivery, click and collect and pick-up networks.
  3. Choice and convenience of shipping empower price and time-sensitive customers to find the most attractive delivery for them, while retailers enjoy the best delivery experience with managed and optimised shipping costs.

Shippit.com is the shipping engine for modern retail. Learn more about our how our software can save you time, money and keep your customers coming back.

Author April Smallwood

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