Doddle: There’s certainly room for Australian retailers to improve their delivery offerings

Doddle: There’s certainly room for Australian retailers to improve their delivery offerings

Australian shoppers are nervous about delivery delays in the lead up to Christmas and are exploring alternative solutions to manage the risk, according to Doddle.

In the lead up to the biggest e-commerce Christmas to date, research released by Doddle reveals that 64 % of Australians are concerned about delivery delays of online orders this festive season. As retailers expand fulfilment options to meet increased demand, shoppers have already started putting their own strategies in place to beat the rush; with 57 % saying they plan to shop earlier, while 21 % say they plan to utilise alternative delivery methods, and 9 % are prepared to pay more for express delivery.

The research reveals Australia’s year of COVID-19 lockdown fundamentally changed consumer behaviour with 60 percent shopping online more as a result of COVID-19 and 87 percent saying they will continue to shop online more post-COVID.

Just over 39 % of shoppers said the convenience of alternate delivery options like pick-up points and lockers was what motivated them to choose these options. A finding underpinned by the increasing availability of these services for evening and weekend collection of parcels.

The convenience of alternate delivery options was shown to outweigh the relative importance of the availability of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) options to consumers when choosing an online retailer to shop with. With 30 % of shoppers citing availability of pick-up points and click & collect as important compared with just 17 percent citing BNPL as important, it was a finding that was sustained across all respondent age groups.

An increase in online shopping has naturally increased delivery volumes, putting noticeable strain on deliveries to homes. While home delivery has traditionally been the default option, the research found there is growing demand for delivery alternatives, with 57 % of consumers saying that, if available, they would use alternative delivery options such as click & collect and pick-up points to receive online orders this festive season. Those aged 35-44 are leading this trend, with 70 % saying they would use alternative delivery methods if available, followed by 25-34 year olds (69 %) and 18-24 year olds (67 %).

“COVID has caused immense shifts in the way consumers shop and interact with brands and, as a result, we’re anticipating this festive season to be the most digitised yet,” commented Justin Dery, APAC CEO, Doddle. “It’s not enough for retailers to simply stick to what they have always done and expect the same success. With Australian e-commerce ballooning in 2020, it’s vital that they prepare themselves early – from stock and discounts, to delivery options and cut-off dates – to ensure customer expectations are met, orders are delivered on time and shoppers’ nerves are settled.”

Despite delivery to a home address being the preferred option for 83 % of shoppers, strong demand for out-of-home fulfilment options has persisted throughout lockdown, with 14 percent of consumers saying they have used alternative delivery options more since COVID, while 9 percent will opt for click & collect as a preference.

“There’s certainly room for Australian retailers to improve their delivery offerings,” added Mr Dery. “This latest research has found that evolved consumer behaviour as a result of COVID isn’t temporary. Even with a small or no physical store network, retailers can meet customer expectations by offering services such as Australia Post Collect, to ensure they offer the best possible experiences that keep customers coming back.”

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