Even as online sales have surged during the lockdown, there is to be no letting up as we head into the holiday season. In this exclusive blogpost following LinnAcademy, Amazon Shipping shares its insights on how to ensure online shoppers buy from your business and how you can deliver outstanding customer experience even when you’re most busy.
Online retailing has experienced an unprecedented surge following the lockdown in March. The Office of National Statistics estimates that in April and May, there was 60% year-on-year revenue growth generated online by retailers. 43% of UK shoppers spent more online during the lockdown than usual, many for the first time.
Research indicate this peak will continue in the run up to Black Friday and Christmas as new stringent COVID measures come into effect. According to studies, YoY growth in monthly sales is still over 50% of pre-COVID levels and as many as 61% of those shoppers plan to keep spending more online.
What online shoppers want. And what your business needs.
Without doubt, consumer behaviour has changed. Plenty of new online customers provide unique opportunities for retailers to grow sales further during the coming peak. Analysis from the global consulting firm, Accenture suggests companies can retain as much as 50% of the lockdown surge volumes online. To achieve this, your business must invest in the customer experience from first click through to the ‘last mile’ delivery
When shoppers were asked about their key considerations when shopping online, they said - lower prices, product availability and range, cost and speed of delivery, and convenient delivery options were most important. This Retail Economics and WBD study illustrates how important delivery has become to the full customer journey.
Customers have chosen your business. Now can you deliver?
Influencing a shopper to consider and choose your online business to buy from, complete the order, receive the product, right through to then ensuring they shop again demands outstanding customer experience. A very large part of this comes down to the available delivery options. Consumers often pay more for speed, reliability and convenience. And a positive experience almost always results in them shopping more with that retailer.
Not surprisingly, online retailers are choosing delivery partners that can provide this level of service. Our experience at Amazon Shipping has shown that collections seven days a week without extra charges, the kind of speed and reliability that provides the retailer and the end customer greater certainty, and a variety of convenient delivery options will satisfy the most demanding customer. And we know that our most satisfied customers are more likely to buy from our businesses again.
Here are six pro tips to prepare for success during peak periods
We have seen how the right delivery partner plays a critical role in your customer’s overall satisfaction. Here are six further ways to deliver an outstanding customer experience even when you are most busy.
Review your forecast weekly and share it with your delivery partner early. Open lines of communication will help them plan their capacity to meet your needs.
Spread out your collections. Weekend and morning collections will help you spread your pickups throughout the day, especially on busy Mondays.
Meet the specific requirements for labels and packaging. Parcels that don’t meet these often require manual intervention which can slow things down. This may affect timely delivery.
Increase the frequency of print runs. Capture all orders coming through by frequent print runs through the morning so you can process as many orders before the collection window. Always prioritise orders by date of dispatch.
Plan for temporary staff over the peak. This can address any worker shortages before they occur - temporary staff are available over the holiday season but the best workers are taken early.
Talk to your customers, and your delivery partner, ‘early and often’. Customers feel more confident buying from your business when you provide regular updates throughout the shipping process. Relaying seasonal requirements (and how these are changing) to your delivery partner will also help them gear up optimally.
The question now is, are you ready for the holiday season?
You’ve got the pro tips. But do you have the right delivery partner?
You don’t have to be on the Amazon marketplace to benefit from Amazon Shipping. We have established strong working relationships with small and mid-sized businesses who use their own websites – and offer them the same level of service and frictionless delivery as we do Amazon sellers.
Amazon Shipping has built a delivery service that provides:
Speed and quality - you wouldn’t expect any less from Amazon Shipping and we have developed a delivery service to satisfy even the most demanding customer.
Competitive rates - simple, easy rates with no surprises, no extra fees.
Innovation built-in - we invest in technology so that we’re constantly raising the bar on your customer’s online shopping journey.
Outstanding customer experience - our years of experience serving a large customer base ensures your customer receives the very best delivery experience.
Start preparing for 2021 early
Amazon Shipping already works closely with sellers satisfy their customers by delivering an outstanding last mile experience. If you request a rate quote now, you will be eligible to send parcels with Amazon Shipping in 2021.