Nearly one in five (19%) European shoppers have experienced problems with online home deliveries according to research from JDA. The survey of 8,177 consumers revealed that of those who had experienced problems, nearly half of Swedish shoppers (47%) had suffered from late deliveries compared to 38% in France, 35% in the UK and 30% in Germany. When it came to missed deliveries it was UK that was the leader, with over a quarter (28%) stating they had missed deliveries despite being at home; this compares to 23% in France, 19% in Germany and 14% in Sweden.
The research highlighted an increasing number of consumers are turning towards click & collect or drive services as an alternative to home delivery. The UK was the most popular market for this trend with nearly half of consumers (48%) saying they had used such services in the last 12 months. In contrast, only 31% of consumers in France had done so followed by Sweden (28%) and Germany (19%). Of those shoppers who had used click & collect or driveservices, their cost followed by their convenience were by far their biggest reasons for doing so. The research did reveal that overall, online shopping (including home delivery and/or click & collect), will continue to grow in popularity; just over two-thirds (67%) of European consumers stated it will be their predominant method of shopping in five years’ time.
“The UK remains the bellwether country for online retail; however the likes of Germany, France and Sweden will see significant growth in the coming years. As online retailing continues to grow in popularity, further pressures will be placed on retailers’ fulfilment capabilities as they scramble to scale their operations to meet record levels of demand. As these figures show, retailers risk damaging their brand if they are unable to meet their customers’ expectations when it comes to home deliveries,” said Lee Gill, vice president, retail strategy, EMEA at JDA.
“In order to reduce fulfillment costs, improve service and offer greater convenience many retailers are now turning towards click & collect or drive services. The challenge retailers’ face is having the supply chains capability to successfully support this changing business model.”
Over a third of shoppers prepared to pay for convenience of same-day delivery
On average, more than a third (37%) of European shoppers said they would pay a premium for the immediacy and convenience of a same day (i.e. within a couple of hours) delivery:
- Shoppers in both Germany (42%) and Sweden (40%) were most prepared to pay a premium
- When asked the type of goods consumers were willing to pay a premium for, grocery products was the clear leader in Germany (63%), Sweden (48%) and the UK (40%)
- In France, Electricals and Entertainment (33%) was the product category that shoppers were willing to pay a premium for
Online returns continue to be a source of consumer discontent
When asked what was their biggest frustration when it came to returning online purchases, more than half of consumers (53%) cited having to pay for postage and packaging to return an item. The research found that shoppers in Germany (62%) and Sweden (62%) in particular were averse towards paying this charge. The next biggest frustrations were the hassle of returning items by post or waiting for a courier (35%) and an inability to return goods to a store (21%).
“Across mainland Europe, the online retail market is still developing and is not yet as sophisticated as that found in the UK. This presents those retailers with a great opportunity to implement best-practice into their own operations by learning from the experience of UK retailers,” said Gill. “What is clear, is that consumer and competitive pressures are forcing a contraction in both store collection and order delivery windows from days to hours and even minutes. Fulfillment excellence will be paramount – with those retailers who successfully balance customer service with profitability being the winners in this new retail battleground.”