eCommerce delivery unpacked: what converts buyers at checkout?

3 minute read

There’s absolutely no doubt that eCommerce delivery experience at checkout is a huge influence on purchasing decisions. Just how significant depends on what you read, what you see as an online retailer, and what your customers tell you. It’s a cliche to say it, but things really are changing fast. 


Multiplying as they are, the current mix of economic and trading challenges aren’t helpingRetailers must keep pace with rapidly evolving consumer behaviours, attitudes, and preferences. 


Getting to the truth can be difficult, as there’s lots of data out there, which really needs to be unpacked. The following is supplied by Shopify – Future of eCommerce Trend Report, and research conducted by Nielsen, and Opinium


So let’s consider the evidence. 

Free shipping

Delivery is never free in any sense. The potential benefit of better conversion rates must be balanced against the cost of providing free shipping. The data below suggest that free shipping is a clincher for many. 


Free shipping has a significant influence on purchasing for 75% of global shoppers. 


58% of people expect free next-day delivery.


68% of people are happy to add another item to their cart to reach a free shipping threshold.


In the following section on delivery times, we see that delivery that is quick, accurate, and predictable is also important. Of those surveyed, expedited shipping, and knowing when deliveries will arrive, are also strong conversion factors. 


That’s why it essential to consider the full delivery mix, not only from a choice perspective, but to encourage and incentivise other forms of delivery that are not free. Providing more options allows you to service the demand for free delivery and offer more personalised, flexible choices. 


The more efficient your overall delivery process is, the easier it becomes to offer free delivery, and absorb the cost. 


Related: Differentiate your offering and scale with enhanced delivery control

Shipping costs

With so many keen to save money when shopping online, the amount you charge for delivery is a decisive factor for customers. The data suggests they also place a high value on transparency.  


69% of online shoppers say that excessively high shipping costs are the biggest reason for cart abandonment.


When searching for and buying products online, consumers find upfront shipping costs (74%), free returns (68%) and estimated arrival time (68%) most valuable.


Your delivery price shown at checkout reflects a number of factors. It varies by the basket features and dimensions, the customer’s location, the delivery option chosen, even when the order is made. A whole series of factors come into play, but at the heart of it are your carrier costs and the availability of the service.


While carrier fees are a significant outlay for any business doing larger volumes, there are still real efficiencies to be found. Building delivery cost control into your process has never been more important


That’s why automating carrier selections with rules and triggers to choose the optimal service helps reduce carrier costs. Being able to add new services and switch between them quickly, gives you a better bargaining position to negotiate better rates. 


But don’t take our word for it: 

“With parcels going out on the right carrier service, and by not unnecessarily paying more, it saves around 10% of the overall shipping cost.’’


Read the full case study here

eCommerce delivery times

It seems that waiting too long for a delivery is something buyers are unwilling to do anymore. At checkout they are swung by quicker options, clear estimates of delivery times, and the ability to self select. The sense of control is something buyers are actively seeking from the eCommerce delivery experience. 


42% of UK consumers say they’d ditch their cart if the package delivery is too slow. 


45% of shoppers are looking for businesses who clearly show anticipated delivery times. 


71% of UK shoppers aren’t happy if there isn’t the opportunity to self-select a delivery time frame.


The delivery options you provide customers are critical in encouraging them to completing a purchase. Many buyers simply abandon a purchase if shipping costs are too high, or delivery is too slow. Ideally, your offering  should be tailored to ensure that customers are given the most relevant options to choose from.


Relevant and accurate delivery options convert more buyers and improve post-purchase experience. They can also increase first time delivery success. They should be optimised to reflect; 


customer location and address 

• day and time the purchase is made 

value and dimensions of each basket

• information like loyalty scheme membership

carrier service available


To create a better delivery experience, you should be able to adjust delivery options at checkout, and quickly add or remove carrier services based on their availability. 

With Scurri, you can do things you never thought possible. Previously unviable service offers become simple and automated with our fully configurable and uniquely sophisticated no-code rules engine. 


You can directly create new, customised checkout options and add premium services simply and swiftly, whatever your scale, enhancing customer experience, removing barriers to sale and improving margins.

Take control of your delivery management

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