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New report shows businesses losing £68k per year due to faults in fulfilment

Wincanton uses Flexipod to streamline home delivery operation

From browsing to basket, the world of the modern shopper has changed, as have their expectations for delivery, according to today’s 2021 Fixing Failed Deliveries report from GBG, the global specialist in identity data intelligence.

As shoppers were forced online to shop throughout the pandemic, retailers rushed to offer and optimise the customer journey online, which saw the spotlight fall on the defective delivery experience.

The report reveals that 24 per cent of businesses saw more than one in ten orders fail to be delivered at the first attempt and 76 per cent of the consumers surveyed reported at least one late delivery in the past year. Poor address data was central to this issue.

The report surveyed 300 retailers and more than 3,000 consumers to unveil the real impact of delivery in the new world of online retail. It revealed that seven in ten (69 per cent) businesses have seen an increase in their average online order value, since the pandemic hit. Despite this surge in revenue, almost as many businesses (68 per cent) said that failed or late delivery is a “significant cost” to their operation.

Research shows the surge in digital retail sales over the past 12 months is set to continue as consumers opt to shop online rather than head back to the high street. The report unearths the changing consumer journey and the need to deliver the optimal online engagement from browsing to checkout, through to final delivery. Key areas of improvement across the digital shopping experience include:

  • The importance of mobile apps: There’s been a 46 per cent increase in consumers shopping via their smartphones over the past year alone, and retailers aren’t always accounting for this. Nearly 4 in 10 (38 per cent) people complained that ordering via their device is harder than shopping via computer, particularly when entering payment details (23 per cent), entering their order (20 per cent), navigating the checkout process (17 per cent), and entering their address details (13 per cent)
  • A good user experience is key: Four in ten people (41 per cent) will abandon an order if it isn’t easy to enter their personal information. Furthermore, 70 per cent claimed they’d be more likely to shop online with vendors that had a clean, streamlined checkout process and 42 per cent said they have more trust in retailers who offer address autocomplete options over those that don’t
  • Addresses aren’t always properly verified: One-third of study respondents either don’t verify address data or leave it up to the courier. When addresses are inaccurate or incomplete, 41 per cent of deliveries are delayed, and 39 per cent simply fail. Some businesses utilise internal address verification systems, which may be a cheaper option but don’t provide the accuracy and reliability of third-party address verification software.

Of the research, Matthew Furneaux – eCommerce expert and Director, Location Intelligence at GBG, said: “While the high street is set to reopen, there is no doubt that online shopping is here to stay as consumers opt for the convenience of staying home and shopping online. At the same time users are demanding a seamless experience from logging on, to checking out, through to receiving their final delivery, and retailers are missing out by only focusing on the online experience while neglecting the final mile. Brand loyalty is increasingly tied to these touchpoints, as consumers are excited by both their order and its arrival. Businesses need to make sure they’re optimising every stage in the digital journey or run the risk of losing trust, customers, and revenue.”

“As the digital high street becomes increasingly crowded, it will only become more important that retailers have the best data, tech, and people on hand to prevent fulfilment failure and make sure they’re delivering the ultimate online experience to meet demand. By implementing smart technologies like auto-complete and data verification, check out processes are simple and fast, and delivery details are confirmed and accurate to ensure retailers reach every customer, everywhere, the first time around,” concluded Furneaux.

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