It’s a perpetual battle for online retailers to keep their margins and customer satisfaction levels high as they compete with the Amazon effect. Amazon has set consumer expectations for free (and oftentimes, fast) shipping; customers also expect a delightful and streamlined experience when they purchase something online.
To help businesses better understand where to invest their time and efforts, we surveyed small and medium-sized online retailers in the United States to find out how they are responding to a new set of expectations around “fast and free” shipping.
Here are some of the key findings of the survey:
- Twenty-nine percent of online retailers do not offer any form of free shipping — a significant drop from 40 percent in 2016
- We found that just 17 percent of online retailers offer free return shipping. Learn more on how to optimize your returns process.
- Only 33 percent of online retailers are providing an expected delivery date on their product pages, leaving plenty of room to improve the customer experience by more accurately communicating expectations.
- Sixty-eight percent of those surveyed identified shipping costs as their biggest operational challenge. Using data to inform your shipping strategy can offset these costs
Shippo is a multi-carrier API and web app that helps retailers, marketplaces and platforms connect to a global network of carriers. Businesses use Shippo to get real-time rates, print labels, automate international paperwork, track packages and facilitate returns. Shippo provides the tools to help businesses succeed through shipping.