Consumers want instant gratification
As a consumer I have come to expect instant gratification at little to no cost. I have come to expect free shipping and for my online purchases to be on my doorstep within two days of placing my order. This expectation has been driven by companies such as Amazon and Zappos – two companies who deliver purchases to my doorstep seemingly minutes after I place an order and who offer free shipping (I am an Amazon Prime member). According to the 2014 UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper Study I am not alone in my expectations.
The study found that free shipping is the most preferred option (81%) when checking out online; however, other options such as learning the estimated delivery date and shipping costs early in the process are also important (63%) to consumers.
When it comes to free shipping, 93% of consumers take action in order to obtain free shipping. Actions include: purchasing additional items so as to qualify for free shipping; choosing a slower transit time; and searching online for a promo code.
Leaving items behind
Consumers identified several reasons for abandoning items in their online shopping cart. The majority of the reasons provided were related to shipping costs and delivery time.
Free and now
The study also looked at the number of days consumers are willing to wait for products to be delivered, and the role of free shipping on the delivery date. The long and short of it is that consumers want their products now; however, they are willing to wait a little bit if they are able to get free shipping.
What are your expectations when it comes to shipping?