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All Things Shipping | November 15, 2019

Survey: Slower Delivery Times Decline as 2-3 Day Shipping Becomes the Norm for Retailers and Consumers

By Shippo

In its fourth annual survey, Shippo looks at how shipping policies have changed in recent years and whether retailers are meeting, not meeting, or exceeding consumers’ delivery expectations. The report offers opportunities for e-commerce businesses to better understand and address the fulfillment needs of their consumers. 

Once commonplace in e-commerce, slower delivery times are now increasingly obsolete. Amazon is the likely culprit, shifting consumer expectations as it speeds up its delivery options, and most recently announcing its expansion of one-day delivery with Amazon Prime.

In 2017, for example, 44 percent of retailers said that their customers select 4-7 day delivery. Today, that number has dropped to 22 percent of consumers. 

This year, the most popular delivery time is 2-3 days, with 54 percent of consumers and 50 percent of businesses preferring it.

A notable difference between e-commerce offerings and consumer expectations is enthusiasm for same or next-day delivery. While 17 percent of consumers say they want same or next-day delivery, less than one percent of retailers think it’s important to their customers. 

Key Takeaways From the 2019 State of Shipping Report

  • Slow delivery times are a thing of the past. In 2017, 44 percent of retailers said their customers choose 4-7 day delivery. In 2019, that number decreased to 22 percent of retailers. 
  • Consumers and retailers agree: 2-3 day shipping is most popular (selected by 54 percent of consumers and 50 percent of online retailers). 
  • While 17 percent of shoppers want same or next-day delivery, just 0.2 percent of online retailers consider it a priority. 
  • Free shipping is no longer perpetual. The percentage of SMBs that say “we always offer free shipping” has decreased from 40 percent in 2016 to 21 percent in 2019.
  • Almost half of consumers prefer stores that offer free shipping, stating they will only purchase online with free shipping (27 percent) or will swap stores for free shipping (20 percent). 

[Download the Report] 

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