Aggregation of Marginal Gains - Volume #2

Digital Delivery: A Guide To The Best eCommerce Shipping Solutions

Shipping plays a pivotal role in eCommerce success, so investing in effective eCommerce Shipping Solutions is one of the most important things you can do to grow your business online. Online eCommerce revolves around the merchant working to facilitate personalised and convenient customer demands, with delivery being no exception.

With help from the State of Shipping in Commerce report produced by Temando, we’ll walk you through the absolute must-haves and must-knows to help you find solid eCommerce shipping solutions.

What Do Modern-Day Consumers Expect?

Before you find the right eCommerce shipping solutions that work for your business, you need to know what customers want. Delivery has evolved so much over recent years. Waiting at home all day for the courier to deliver your items is an out-dated, archaic approach and is quickly becoming a thing of the past. The future of delivery for all online merchants is that of personalised delivery, greater choice and emphasis on customer convenience. But don’t just take out word for it.

eCommerce Shipping Solutions | iWeb

Here are the top 3 delivery factors that encourage shoppers to complete check out, according to data collected by the State of Shipping in Commerce report. Let’s check them out:

Free Shipping

Nothing annoys a customer more than unexpected delivery charges at the checkout level. If you’re still doing this as an online merchant, it could explain your low conversion and high basket abandonment rates.

Take a look at what ASOS do for a great example. They offer free shipping, next-day options and require no minimum order value. With their profits having increased by 145% in the last quarter of 2017, they’ve got the right Commerce shipping solutions in place.

Free & Easy Returns

Missguided has a delivery ethos that encompasses both customer choice and convenience. They offer the traditional free pick-up parcels from a home or business address. However, they also offer returns by local bricks-and-mortar locations such as Asda or Collect+ pick-ups.

This makes doing returns an everyday convenience for customers, something that can be completed whilst doing your weekly grocery shop.

Next Day Delivery

In our fast-paced world, consumers want to see something online and to have it in their possession the very next day. Merchants must keep up with these digital demands and try to offer speedy next-day delivery options on top of standard delivery.

Which Shipping Trends Are On The Rise?

Who doesn’t love a good #Trend? However, more often than not trends quickly become a standard business practice that all customer eventually come to expect over time, so it’s worth knowing what’s hot and what’s not when it comes to the latest delivery options. Technology has changed all our online shopping habits, but how far have we come? Let’s look:

Showrooming

This is the practice of visiting a shop or multiple shops in order to examine a product before buying it online at a lower price. It’s thought that around 53% of customers will engage in showrooming, that’s a huge number and a driving force behind why online sales are increasing year on year.

Whilst non-store retailing may be experiencing a slowdown in growth it is still by far the largest contributor to the proportion of spending online, accounting for 79.4% of all money spent on internet sales – ONS

In the world of showrooming your physical store creates the lead, meaning your digital store has to do all the hard work: converting customers. Showrooming works in the favour of online retailers as it’s generally easier to get your customer to buy even more than they intended because it’s easier to up-sell, cross-sell and generally show your customers a wider range of items online. Make sure your site is taking advantage of this dual shopping phenomenon.

Click&Collect

We all know about click&collect, it’s been a standard feature of delivery for quite some time. However, data collected from the  State of Shipping in Commerce report suggest this might not be as straight-forward as first though.

eCommerce Shipping Solutions | NewLook | iWeb

According to the report, the main driving force behind the large majority of customers using the click&collect option at checkout isn’t due to its convenience but simply because it’s the cheapest option.

Sometimes a ‘trend’ is just so for all the wrong reasons. If you run an eCommerce business and you see that click&collect is your most popular order choice, check it’s not just the best of a bad bunch of delivery options on your site.

Tip: Gather feedback on your delivery options in an email survey or use Google Analytics to gain more insight. 

Order Tracking

19% of both men and women asked in the Temando report said they’d shop online more if sites offered tracking capabilities. Tracking is an excellent way of giving the power back to the customer but also taking the onus off you. A tracking service is just one of the major benefits offered by using big couriers like Hermes, Royal Mail or Parcel Force to help take care of your delivery needs. eCommerce Shipping Solutions | Hermes | iWeb

However, shoppers are wanting a more varied range of options from tracking. Some of the most popular ways in the UK are:

Using Shipping As a Marketing Ploy

For some brands, they’ve found shouting about shipping can be a major business USP for them. Here are the most popular types of free shipping tactics used by 3 different business types:

Retail & Multichannel

Pureplay:

You know what they say. If you got it, flaunt it.

Delivery Mistakes

We know delivery isn’t exactly glamorous, but for every customer, their online shopping experience definitely should be. However, for many online users, the most exciting and the most memorable part of shopping is the checkout process. As a retailer, you want a customer’s last memory to be the best!

Putting a damper on the checkout hype is ill-advised. Sneaky checkout features or inflexible shipping options will only dent your customer’s happiness and affect your business in the long-run. Merchants should be curating an enjoyable online UX for all customers and this absolutely includes how your site deals with delivery. Here’s what to avoid when you start thinking about your own eCommerce shipping solutions:

Delivery Charges Revealed Too Late In The Process

26% of customer who online shop do so because they think it’s cheaper than buying on the high-street, and it often is. Merchants should be rewarding customers for shopping with them whether it’s online or instore and not slapping them with pesky delivery fee’s deep into the check process.

58% will not shop with the retailer again if they had a bad shipping experience – State of Shipping in Commerce 

Operating your business without the proper transparency all customers desire, especially when it comes to checkout and delivery is likely going to cause low conversions, high basket abandonment rates and poor customer loyalty. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. Customers are like sharks, they can smell the dishonesty a mile away. 🦈

Limited Shipping Options

Gone are the days of delivery being a sparse and uninspiring offering. Today’s customers want eCommerce shipping solutions that fit in with their busy lifestyles. Fundamentally the consumer comes first, not the merchant. Your business can literally be made or broken on slim-picking delivery options, take a look at this sobering statistic if you don’t believe us:

54% of shoppers in the UK would buy from an online competitor when the delivery service they seek isn’t provided –  State of Shipping in Commerce

Don’t miss out on amazing opportunities with potential customers all because of inadequate delivery.

eCommerce Shipping Solutions That’ll Help You Succeed Online

eCommerce Shipping Solutions | iWeb

For us, the overall theme coming from the State of Shipping in Commerce report is how segmentation can be used to help influence delivery choices. As a merchant, you need to ask questions. Who is your audience? What are their spending habits like? What age bracket do they populate? Here are a few key ways segmentation can help with picking the best delivery options for your business:

Spending Frequency & Amount

It’s important that you know your audience so you know the right things to offer them. Looking at the quality of your items, the price of your products, as well as average order spend can help when establishing your delivery fees and options.

High spenders seem more loyal while low spenders tend to react with negative consequences for the retailer – The State of Shipping in Commerce

Let’s look at this piece of data in a real-life example with two successful online retailers:

Missguided

Harrods

Gender Matters

In most areas of life, men and women want and need different things. This same principle applies to delivery options. Using data presented in the State of Shipping in Commerce report, we now understand more that different delivery preferences differ depending on the gender of your audience.

Although free shipping is generally preferred, shoppers (especially men) are willing to pay for alternative options that conveniently suit their needs at the time of purchase such as Same day or Next day delivery. – The State of Shipping in Commerce

Look at this graph taken from the report, it showcases the different delivery options that both men and women prefer, while there are some clear cross-overs, they don’t always agree. Understanding even the smallest of nuances demanded by your audience helps to create a truly personalised user experience and some bespoke eCommerce shipping solutions. eCommerce Shipping Solutions | iWeb

Age is More Than A Number

The age of your audience can have a huge impact on what and how you run your business. This report looks at the varying demands placed upon merchants by both Generation Z and the Baby Boomers generation. When it comes to eCommerce shipping solutions, there are some clear age differences.

Generation Z

This is a group born after the Millenials, born between the mid-1990’s & early 2000’s.

Baby Boomers

This golden-age group include those lucky individuals born in the years following WW2, 1945 onwards.

We know, this seems like a tremendous amount of information to take it. However, there’s no need to feel overwhelmed when it comes to digital delivery. The best advice we can give is to work on at least delivering the top 3 customer expectations in our list. Make sure what you’re offering is manageable and most importantly listen to what your customers want and do all you can to offer it to them.

Need help making sense of your own delivery options, we can help. Drop us a line, we’re happy to help.


Subscribe via email

Sign up to get notifications of new posts by email.

Share this article

Posted in eCommerce

Tagged

Other posts you might like

Magento have been named a B2B leader in commerce by the ”The Forrester WaveTM: B2B Commerce Suites for Midsize Companies…

We’re really proud of the hard work and whole-team dedication that went into pulling off our first ever client day…

Nobody likes to be bamboozled with jargon do they? Working in an office that lives and breathes eCommerce on a…

Call us on 01785 279920

Our friendly Magento experts are happy to answer your questions.

Follow us!

Get the latest eCommerce news, reviews and expert advice in your inbox.

To find out more about how we use your data, read our Privacy Policy