The first commandment for all companies is to respond to the needs of their customers. But knowing your wishes is something that is becoming more difficult every day, due to the constant change that society and business are going through. And if there is any paradigmatic example of dizzying changes and evolution, that is electronic commerce.
In order to respond to what ecommerce customers want, the eCommerce Observatory and Tipsa (our parcel distribution network) have surveyed the 20,000 Observatory subscribers to find out their opinion. Its objective: “to obtain a wide sample that allows obtaining results that reflect the current reality of logistics and its relationship with the evaluation of the purchase by the final consumer”.
The desires of ecommerce
The importance of home delivery
E-commerce is increasingly aware of the importance that logistics has for them. The process from the moment the purchase is made until it is delivered is part of the product itself and, therefore, of the image of the e-commerce that has made the sale. A bad experience with the delivery process can ruin the user experience, regardless of the quality of the ecommerce product.
According to the study, 69% of those surveyed give the highest importance (five out of five) to home delivery, to which is added 22% who rate it four. At the other extreme, only 1% consider its importance as very low (one in five).
A sector in continuous growth
One of the reasons why e-commerce is on everyone’s lips is because, even during the years of crisis, it has experienced a bonanza that seems to have no end. Every year the volume of its sales grows and optimism does not abandon its protagonists. The Observatory has also asked about growth expectations, and the answers reflect the good future that seems to await electronic commerce.
More than a fifth (21%) estimate that it will grow by more than 20% during 2017, to which is added 28% who estimate its evolution between 10% and 20%. In other words, practically half of those surveyed (49%) consider that their turnover will increase by double digits throughout this year.
Convenience point delivery hasn’t quite taken off
One of the solutions that logistics has developed to improve the percentage of successful deliveries in the last mile is the implementation of convenience points (smart lockers, shops, etc.), where the carrier leaves the merchandise waiting for the recipient to remove it. However, this option has not yet achieved in Spain the success it has experienced in other countries.
When asked “What weight does convenience point collection have in your online sales?”, 69% of those surveyed gave it the lowest possible rating (one out of five). An amount that contrasts with the 6% that gives it a score of five.
Variety in traceability
Ecommerce companies know that their customers need to have constant information about the status of their shipments. For this reason, there are several tools that they often make available to their clients so that they can follow this traceability at all times. The vast majority (80%) give the possibility of monitoring through the website of their logistics providers. Something that 38% also allow to do on their own website. Regarding the use of mobile applications, 11% use that of the logistics provider and 5% their own.
Various ways to reach the destination
Traceability is not the only field in which ecommerce needs to have several options for its customers. The way to deliver the merchandise, which we have already seen is a critical factor for e-commerce, also shows the growing range of options that consumers have before them.
The star option continues to be home delivery, available in 95% of online businesses. This is followed by delegation collection, with 37%, and then by convenience point collection (16%).
77% of e-commerce offers the possibility of collecting the merchandise at the customer’s home
The advance notice of delivery gains strength
Among the difficulties faced by e-commerce logistics, one of the biggest is finding people at their homes when making deliveries. Failure to achieve this has a negative impact on everyone: the customer does not receive their purchase and the logistics provider incurs costs that translate into losses.
To increase the success of these trips to homes, delivery notices seem to be easily permeating both users and e-commerce. And it is that 69% of those surveyed have asked their transport companies to make advance notices of delivery.
Reverse logistics also requires
Another of the hot spots of ecommerce is the return shipping policy, which is essential for its success. This is where reverse logistics comes into play, essential for the entire process to function easily and comfortably, for a customer who highly values having the best possible returns system.
Once again, it is once again the variety of options available that focuses the Observatory’s attention. According to the responses collected, 77% of e-commerce offers the possibility of collecting the merchandise at the customer’s home. The following most used systems (19%) are the delivery by the client in the logistics provider’s delegation and in the transport company’s delegation. Finally, with 11%, delivery is located at a point of convenience.
The observatory seems to outline a defined vision of what e-commerce is demanding from its logistics: the need to have several options to choose from, whether it is when delivering, knowing the status of shipments or returning merchandise. Although some of the tools are not as developed among the public as in other countries, the evolution of ecommerce invites us to think that they will gain weight in the near future. These needs also draw a new customer profile, more demanding throughout the entire process.