Most SMBs Offer Free Shipping, But Few Offer Fast
In its third annual survey, Shippo looks at how consumer expectations are changing around shipping in the age of Amazon—and whether retailers are meeting, not meeting, or exceeding these expectations. The report offers opportunities to better align the SMBs who ship with the customers they sell to.
While smaller players in online retail are increasingly well positioned to compete with Amazon on free shipping, challenges such as shipping costs and gaps in customer communications still remain. Additionally, just 1 percent of small and mid-sized e-commerce businesses offer same or next-day delivery.
This has set off a race in the shipping industry: established shipping carriers are creating new services for small retailers, while shipping startups aiming to address the same market are growing in numbers.
Key takeaways from the 2018 State of Shipping report
- Free shipping: Two-thirds of small and medium-sized retailers offer some type of free shipping.
- Returns: The percentage of online retailers that offer free returns increased by 10 percent over the previous year.
- Same and next-day delivery: While 15 percent of shoppers want same or next-day delivery, according to the survey, just one percent of online retailers we surveyed are offering it.
- Shipping costs: More than 75 percent of retailers say shipping costs are their biggest challenge for their business, a 7 percent increase from the year before.