How customer demands are reshaping retail delivery

Choice and convenience

The expectations of customers have dramatically changed in the last decade; the days of choices on the shelves of stores have become the convenience of same-day delivery from a seamless e-commerce experience. For retailers, that means continually having to face the challenge of providing choice and convenience to their customers, while maintaining healthy margins for their business.

To take a step back, the shift to greater convenience and choice started in 2005 when Amazon reset customer expectations with the launch of Prime and 2 day shipping. Fast forward to today, and almost every retailer offers at least a 2 day delivery option—and that’s not quite meeting expectations like it use to either.

Amazon has once again reset customer expectations with the launch of their Prime Now service, offering same day delivery in over 50 markets. With the country’s leading online retailer widely offering same day delivery, nearly 80% of shoppers have come to expect same-day shipping. In fact, for many big box retailers the delivery options have become just as important as the product itself—especially for substitute products that consumers can buy from numerous places.

When it comes to offering dynamic fulfillment and delivery options, retailers have been keeping a number of factors in mind:

Speed

A decade ago, same-day or even next-day delivery seemed like a luxury reserved for urgent business couriers. Today, companies like Amazon are offering free 2-hour deliveries for certain products in cities across the country.

Other e-commerce players, like Farfetch, Foodkick, and BloomThat, are differentiating themselves with delivery, offering scheduled, same day delivery from their store to the customer’s door. These savvy companies are taking advantage of the fact that only 56% of retailers are offering same-day shipping.

Deliv’s dynamic, same day delivery platform is able to carpool orders and orchestrate their delivery logistics in order to offer the convenience of same day delivery at an affordable price point.

Choice

A report done by Business Insider found that 25% of shoppers would abandon their cart if same-day delivery was unavailable. These sort of stringent expectations for retailers come from the vast pool of options that shoppers have online. They can expect choices because, if they’re not available, they can go someplace else.

A wide range of delivery alternatives is one of the most decisive factors for an e-commerce operation to succeed. Convenience and flexibility are at the heart of what makes online shopping more appealing to many customers compared to visiting a store. Imperial College’s Consumer Shopping Survey shows that 74% of UK online shoppers think delivery convenience is the most important factor in deciding where to purchase. What’s more, 47% of respondents said they’re willing to spend more with a retailer that offers them the flexibility they need when it comes to delivery, pick up, or return alternatives. Surprisingly, only half of retailers offer express delivery option.

Visibility

Today, whether an order is sitting at the store counter, in the car exiting the parking lot, or rounding the corner to the final delivery location, companies and customers have come to expect real-time visibility into where their package is and when it will arrive.

Deliv’s real-time tracking tool gives retailers, whether big or small, the ability to provide their customers with full insight into where their purchases are when they’re en route. Sign up for Deliv to begin offering same day delivery today.

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