Younger cosmetics and beauty shoppers demand same-day delivery, study shows

According to research unveiled today, more than half of millennial and Gen-Z online shoppers (60% of 25-34-year-olds and 55% of those aged 16-24) say they would buy more often from a beauty product brand or retailer if same-day delivery was available. Half (49%) of older millennials aged 35-44 feel the same way.

Younger consumers also increasingly see same-day deliveries as a given: 46% of 16-24-year-olds, 51% of 25-34-year-olds and 48% of 35-44-year-olds all now expect to see same-day delivery as an option when shopping on the internet for beauty and cosmetics. The survey of 2,000 UK consumers was carried out by delivery business Gophr.

Gophr also analysed the market more broadly and discovered that beauty and cosmetics brands in the US have made great strides in meeting this demand. Sephora, Ulta Beauty, multiple brands within the Estée Lauder and Coty portfolios, as well as The Body Shop US, Anastasia Beverly Hills, and Hourglass all offer same-day delivery. 

However, Gophr’s analysis also uncovered that in this country the story is very different. Only six out of the UK’s 100 top beauty brands offer guaranteed same-day delivery (Burberry, Byredo, Chanel, Diptyque, Jo Malone and SpaceNK), with 58 offering next-day as standard.

When it comes to costs, Gophr’s bespoke consumer research found that two-thirds (68%) of online shoppers in the UK were prepared to pay extra for same-day delivery on beauty products. 

Almost a third (29%) of all female shoppers are prepared to pay between £3 and £5. Across the younger age groups in the 16-24 and 25-34 range, this rises slightly, with 30% and 32% respectively prepared to pay up to £5 for same-day delivery on their orders. 

However, only 11% of all consumers are willing to pay between £5 and £10 extra for super-fast delivery. Again, it is slightly higher – 16 and 19% respectively – for 16-to-24 and 25-to-34-year-olds, but it is still indicative that £3 to £5 is the sweet spot.

That said, Gophr’s analysis of the top 100 beauty brands in the UK revealed that same-day delivery, on average, costs more than £12. However, its consumer research highlighted that only 4% of shoppers would look to spend £10-£15 on same-day delivery of cosmetics and only 2% are willing to pay more than £15 per order.

Patrick Eve, CCO of Gophr, said: “The beauty industry is innovating at an incredible pace, giving consumers more and better ways to access products. Social media influencers, augmented reality try-ons and online tutorials with clickable product links to create looks at home are creating a new set of expectations. 

“Consumers see it and want it there and then, with products delivered directly to them in real time. However, most brands have yet to catch up with the immediate demand that their technology and marketing strategies are designed to trigger.”

Gophr’s analysis further revealed that multi-brand sellers are increasingly using same-day delivery to gain market share as they ramp up their online cosmetics and beauty businesses. Of the top 12 UK multi-brand retailers in this space, 50% offer same-day delivery as their earliest possible delivery option and a further 25% offer guaranteed next-day.

It highlighted that Asos, Cult Beauty, LookFantastic, Net-A-Porter, Selfridges and Superdrug all now offer same-day delivery on cosmetics and beauty purchases, while Beauty Bay, FeelUnique and Glossier all offer guaranteed next-day. 

Patrick Eve adds: “Many shoppers looking for a quick fix or an instant gift will head to multi-brand sites to buy, drawn by the super-fast delivery option. Cosmetics and beauty goods may be bought as an add-on to an outfit or other items, especially if it bumps the basket value over the limit to earn free or reduced cost for same-day delivery.

“Beauty brands need to up their game to match. It isn’t a huge step from offering guaranteed next-day delivery to offering same-day.”