The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift to ecommerce and transformed consumer behavior and purchasing habits that require retailers to adapt, according to the results of a new study released by LaserShip, the largest regional ecommerce parcel carrier in the U.S. and leader in last-mile delivery.
Consumers still overwhelmingly prefer home delivery over buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) and other forms of click and collect, and are increasingly choosing retailers that can provide faster delivery. LaserShip commissioned the study from Hanover Research to survey over 3,000 consumers to understand how their shopping behaviors and preferences have evolved since the start of the pandemic. The research, including takeaways and recommendations for ecommerce retailers, is outlined in LaserShip’s whitepaper.
Key insights from the study include:
Consumers still prefer home delivery, despite the growth of BOPIS and click and collect:
Eighty-nine percent of consumers prefer home delivery over BOPIS, up nearly 10 percent from 2020.
Slow delivery is costing retailers business:
Seventy-three percent of consumers view fast delivery as critical online shopping criteria, a 16 percent increase from 2020, and they are choosing brands that can deliver their items more quickly. In 2021 alone, slow delivery caused 64 percent of consumers to not try a new retailer and 54 percent to switch merchants.
Consumers want their items to arrive faster and are willing to pay for it:
Nearly 60 percent of shoppers surveyed paid for faster delivery, with 69 percent of those having paid more for next-day delivery. These findings are particularly compelling and reflect the extent of the pandemic’s impact on shopping behaviors, as 62 percent of consumers surveyed in June 2020 had never paid for expedited delivery.
Consumers will switch retailers to get free shipping:
High shipping cost is the leading cause of cart abandonment, driving nearly half of consumers to abandon their carts in 2021. Moreover, 81 percent of consumers switched brands because shipping was too expensive.
“The pandemic has only increased shoppers’ preferences for free and fast home delivery,” Josh Dinneen, Chief Commercial Officer of LaserShip, said. “This study provides retailers with key insights and strategies to help them build flexible, resilient supply chains that meet consumers’ expectations and respond to evolving shopping behaviors to acquire customers and increase brand loyalty.”