AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Convey, the active delivery management platform, today announced the results of its annual survey of delivery expectations for the holidays, with 40 percent of consumers reporting delivery is the single most decisive factor of the shopping experience.
“Despite the best efforts of retailers to fulfill customer delivery demands, shoppers still perceive the delivery experience to be mediocre at best”
The survey of 1,500 shoppers identified the importance of date commitments to the delivery experience, the need for retailers to provide proactive shipment updates, and the expectation that retailers will resolve shipping issues (as opposed to carriers) and provide more convenient customer self-service options, as top priorities.
“Despite the best efforts of retailers to fulfill customer delivery demands, shoppers still perceive the delivery experience to be mediocre at best,” said Rob Taylor, CEO at Convey, Inc. “In our recent survey, shoppers were clear: while free and fast shipping are still table stakes, promise-by dates and the way a retailer handles on-going issues are equally important. With half of all shoppers experiencing at least one issue per year, retailers must take an active role to control the outcome of deliveries during the busy holiday season.”
When asked to choose the most important delivery factor during the holiday season, 29% of respondents prefer a specific promise dates, and 23% select a delivery date range, bested only by cost at 33%.
In addition, shoppers expect retailers to make a commitment and keep it.
Over 95% of shoppers expect retailers to proactively respond if a carrier’s estimated delivery date changes while a shipment is in transit, and more than 90% expect some form of action or compensation for missed promise-by dates.
Preferred responses to a missed promise date include: refund of shipping costs (50%), discount for a future purchase (19%), expedited shipping for a replacement product (10%), and expedited shipping for a future purchase (10%).
Expected compensation for other delays include: refund of shipping costs (32%), discount for a future purchase (25%), expedited shipping for a replacement product (16%), and item return and refund* (16%).
Communication is Key
Shoppers were also loud and clear about how and when they want to communicate with retailers, with 93% expecting to receive proactive shipment updates.
When a delivery exception occurs, 41% of shoppers want to be notified immediately, preferring e-mail notifications (50%) to SMS (21%), phone calls (12%), tracking page updates (8%), and Facebook notifications (1%). Only 7 percent prefer no contact at all.
Of the 94% of shoppers interested in providing delivery feedback, there was strong affinity for using the same communication channels as those used by retailers.
Shoppers Want (More) Control
Regardless of the issue, 97.5% of shoppers want to self-serve or interact with a retailer directly to resolve delivery issues, with those aged 18-34 being 35% more likely to prefer options such as pick-up lockers and holding a shipment at a terminal.
Unfortunately today many retailers, including those acutely focused on customer service, do not have the tools or processes in place to meet this need – often responding reactively to inbound calls and in many cases sending shoppers to a carrier’s 1-800 number.
For detailed survey data, download the report: The Modern Customer Delivery Imperative.
*Consumers who planned to do the majority of their shopping after December 18th were 26% more likely to prefer a return and refund if their order was delayed during the holidays.
Convey enables businesses worldwide to take control of shipping and delivery. Our cloud-based platform connects disparate data and processes, giving shippers the insight to make smart decisions, and the tools to take action. From parcel to freight, and first to final mile, Convey helps the world’s largest brands create better delivery outcomes while reducing costs, improving visibility and transforming transportation into their next competitive advantage. Founded in 2013, Convey is based in Austin, Texas. Learn more at: www.getconvey.com.