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6 ways delivery options impact your e-commerce sales

Customer with credit card

Would you be interested in some little-known e-commerce research that could have a massive impact on your website’s conversion rates?

There are lots of companies that can tell you all about how important your site’s user interface is, or the psychology involved with product pages, images and colours – but it turns out that all the design tweaks in the world could be for nothing if you’re dropping the ball with one thing:


Now, you could be forgiven for being cynical about a courier company telling you how important delivery is! But in fact, this research has been done by an industry leading research body with extensive knowledge of how courier companies and businesses work together.

The research monitored the internet shopping habits of thousands of consumers – with their online behaviours recorded and analysed. Don’t worry though, we’ve read it all – and can distill it down to exactly how e-commerce delivery options influence your customer’s online buying decisions…

1. Your customers like options

A hefty 60% of consumers buy goods from one particular retailer because they know that their delivery options suit them and their lives.

Now, given that every customer is slightly different – there’s no saying which particular set of delivery options suits, so the key here would be for you to offer as many options as possible and monitor which selections seem to be ticking the boxes for your audience.

2. Customers like to see delivery options on product pages

77% of people want to see delivery options displayed on the particular product page they’re browsing.

It would seem part of this is a result of previous bad experiences – a substantial number of customers describe selecting a well-priced product only to find that the figure is significantly bumped up when a delivery option is added.

An experience like this can leave a bad taste in a customer’s mouth – so absolute transparency is key.

3.People hold a grudge

A significant 39% of people will never shop with an online retailer again if their delivery experience is a negative one.

The message here is that customers really do have a tendency to vote with their feet – and what’s more, there’s no defining what a ‘negative experience’ is – so choosing a courier company you know isn’t likely to drop the ball on any front is absolutely vital.

4. People love free deliveries

If ever there were an incentive to offer free delivery - it’s this one!

Now, unfortunately for you, your courier company is still going to need to be paid – but if your business is willing to stand the cost of delivery, the study shows that a huge 73% of customers will spend more with you - if that additional spend takes them over the figure that qualifies them for free delivery.

The level you set free delivery to will depend on your average order value – but setting it slightly higher is likely to see people clicking to add that extra item they’d have otherwise left on the shelf…

5. Customers like to change details post purchase

The next statistic is doubled barreled – proving that flexible delivery options are desired and used…

29% of people had changed the delivery date or the delivery location after they had placed their order. On top of this, another 50% of customers said they would have used this option had it been available to them.

So, all in all that’s 79% of customers who are swayed by having some flexibility beyond clicking that all important ‘place order’ button.

6. Most people say delivery options decide which retailer they’ll use

Finally, 54% of people say that delivery options and experiences define who they shop with online.

A statistic like that is worth repeating – 54% of people represents the majority of your customers – all of which say that delivery, whether that’s the options or the experience, influences whether or not they’re going to buy from you.

The bigger picture

You don’t have to rewind the clock very far to go back to a time when customers were delighted to receive their online shopping parcels whenever they arrived – with 7-10 day deliveries commonplace.

Now though, such timescales would represent an enormous barrier for people using your site – especially since companies like Amazon set a lightning pace with their next day ‘Prime’ orders – often with order cut off times well into the evening or night time. In fact, 76% of the people taking part in the research had made a purchase with Amazon in the prior 6 months – based overwhelmingly on speed of delivery.

What are people's delivery priorities?

Topping customer’s delivery priority lists was, probably somewhat unsurprisingly, free delivery – and speed of delivery was a close second place.

However, the smart online retailers are beginning to realise that there’s no one delivery option or delivery factor that creates the perfect service for their customers – instead, making deliveries as personal as possible really is the recipe for success.

In short, the more control you can give to your customers relating to delivery of their goods – the more likely they are to shop with you – and keep coming back.

Next day deliveries are always going to appeal to online shoppers pressed for time. Life is getting busier and customers are expecting more flexibility, in fact, a growing number of people are opting to shop with companies who offer same-day services.

Don’t panic though, same-day services tend to only be an expectation of people in major city centre locations, so there’s no need for you to be offering such short timescales for people in the Highlands just yet!

A final thought

The overwhelming message from customers is clear – people shopping with you expect more from your delivery options now than they ever have before – meaning you’re left with the task of making your deliveries as clear as possible, faster, easier to organise, more convenient and error free.

Simple right?!

It seems there’s never been a better time to have a good courier service your side...

AtoZ Couriers

If you’d like to expand the delivery options you can offer your customers, click here or call us. Our Bromley office (covering Kent postcodes) can be contacted on 01689 873 771 – and our Croydon office (covering London and Surrey postcodes) can be contacted on 0208 667 1234. We’re always delighted to discuss how AtoZ could support your business.

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