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Online & Digital

Shopper satisfaction with online delivery falls

New research has suggested that there has been a “notable decline” in shopper satisfaction with online delivery, after several years of it remaining stable.

The findings come from the IMRG Consumer Delivery Review 2018, an annual survey asking 2,000 UK shoppers 50 questions to understand their perceptions of online delivery. The 10th edition of the series was supported by GFS with the survey undertaken by maru/EDR.

Between 2011 and 2017, overall satisfaction with online delivery was steady, but this year’s survey revealed that it fell from 85% to 78% between 2017 and 2018.

The number of respondents saying delivery concerns sometimes prevented them from shopping online also rose from 41% to 48% between 2017 and 2018. IMRG said delivery had got better over recent years as retailers focused on it more but as that’s happened, shopper expectations have gone up.

When asked why delivery concerns prevent them from shopping online, the most common responses were:
* Risk of failed delivery – 54%
* Additional cost of home delivery – 39%
* Delivery too slow – 37%
* Timeslots too vague – 32%
* The risk that goods may not arrive on time – 32%

Neil Cotty, CEO of Global Freight Solutions, said: “There is a major misconception in the retail space that consumers want fast-and-free delivery, when in reality they want convenience and transparency. The data proves that over half of respondents abandoned an online purchase at check-out stage because of delivery related reasons last year.

“And with the uncertainty around trade tariffs as a result of Brexit, retailers are bound for even more delivery complications. They’ll need to seriously consider how it will impact their overall e-commerce strategies, in order to give customers a seamless experience, choice, and transparency they expect at the checkout.”

Another factor that may be negatively influencing shopper views of online delivery is the perceived environmental impact. When asked whether they think it is more environmentally-friendly to shop online or on the high street, there appeared to be a shift in opinion over the last decade.

Andy Mulcahy, strategy and insight director, IMRG, said while online was once regarded a “cleaner alternative to shopping on the high street” the perceived advantage of it had hit a 10-year low.

He added: “This is likely being influenced by the focus put on this area by media and government following the Blue Planet II series, with excess packaging being a prime target for negative headlines. This may be dragging down overall satisfaction with online delivery and, if not addressed by retailers, may lead to customers shunning their brands for greener competitors.”

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