Online shoppers don’t want next day delivery. Bring it later!

LM125I regularly shop online. CD’s, sneakers and electronics are among my favorite items. I don’t know about you, but when I buy something online the little kid inside me wakes up and I want to play with my newly ordered toy NOW! The feeling is not so strong that I select same day delivery at check out, but I do prefer next day delivery. Apparently this is not the case for the majority of online shoppers, according to research recently done by Dutch mail and parcel company PostNL. They have based this research on data they collected with an app they have developed called MijnPakket (MyPackage).

Order before 10pm today and get your order delivered tomorrow! A lot of e-Commerce sites offer delivery terms like this, and some even same day delivery. Only 14% of online shoppers (me included) say delivery as soon as possible is most important. 86% of online shoppers prefer delivery 3 days after they order, with Friday and Saturday being the most popular days. 35% even prefers collecting their package at the local post office according to PostNL.

One of the main findings of the research is that today’s online shopper wants to be in control. They want to be able to determine where a package will be delivered and at what time. There is nothing more annoying than a missed delivery. This goes for the consumer who has to wait for something that he could already have had, and for the parcel carrier,who needs to make a second delivery attempt. And let’s not forget the web shop that comes off as having a bad service as well. Everybody loses.

The fact that the majority of the people in this research will be happy with delivery in 3 days could be great news for web shops. As a lot of the online shopping is done in the weekend, Monday is the busiest day, as all the weekend orders need to be processed. If the delivery time can be postponed with a few days, this means the workload can be spread over several days for both the online store (or it’s logistics provider) and the parcel carrier.

PostNL has based their findings on data they collected with an app they have developed called MijnPakket (MyPackage). The app works closely together with software that web shops can easily incorporate. Customers can track shipments, and re-schedule missed deliveries, increasing both the hit rate for the parcel carrier and customer satisfaction levels for the web shops. 

I must make a side note: only data gathered with the MijnPakket app has been included in the research, which means there is room for bias. A broader research including online shoppers that use other delivery modes and companies would obviously be better.

The source of the data in this article was a blog post on the PostNL corporate blog (it’s in Dutch).

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