What your customers really want from delivery


The Top 10 ways to supercharge your eCommerce delivery.

When it comes to your eCommerce delivery strategy it’s essential to know the facts and figures about what’s truly important to your customers. 


We’ve collected the most up to date research here and put together the Top 10 things you should consider to bring your customers’ delivery experience to the next level.


Update: For eCommerce delivery Tips to help navigate Covid-19, click here.

1. Build Trust.

82% of online shoppers cited delivery as a key factor that would mean they would be likely to shop with a particular retailer. 


  • 70% of shoppers use online marketplaces, 65% of which say delivery ratings are a big influential factor in choosing a retailer to purchase from. 
  • 77% of negative online reviews are about bad post-purchase service, e.g. late or failed deliveries,  a lack of Tracking updates. (Brightpearl).


Exceptional delivery services build trust and brand reputation and attract new shoppers through ratings. So let’s see what factors lead to a positive delivery experience to build that trust.

2. Free Delivery is expected.

Royal Mail found that nearly half of UK shoppers expect delivery to always be free, at 47%. A UPS report found that 55% would choose a slower delivery option if it meant it would be free. 


The majority of people surveyed, however, wouldn’t necessarily switch to an alternative retailer if free delivery isn’t an option, only 1 in 4 said they would do so.


The key with delivery options is to offer your customers with real choice.


  • 83% of consumers expect to be provided with a range of delivery speeds.

3. How fast do they really want their Delivery? 

When asked which delivery services customers used, the results show that Standard delivery is selected significantly more than Same day and Next day. See the chart below for services used by shoppers versus services they plan to use.


The majority of people still choose standard but next day and same day options are still a must for those ‘need it right now’ purchases. Again, offering genuine options is key.

4. Reliability over speed.

Customers consider reliability to be just as important as speed, if not more so when it comes to delivery. Shoppers prefer their orders to arrive when they expect them, rather than be promised a same day or next day delivery that never appears.


Customers expect Delivery time windows from their order, the size/time of the window varies across shoppers.


  • 47% expect an estimated day or time of day delivery
  • 32% expect a delivery time window of 1-2 hours
  • 21% expect a delivery time window of 3-4 hours
  • 17% expect an estimated morning/afternoon/evening delivery


Customers expect the highest level of service and a late or failed delivery is not acceptable, this is where delivery can generate negative online reviews.

5. Communicate, communicate, communicate!

Shoppers want to be kept informed on the status of their delivery. 42% of shoppers want to be informed the day before with a 2 hour delivery time slot and 43% wish to receive information on the morning of delivery.


79% consider it important to receive information regarding the progress of their deliveries, 23% wish to receive push notifications.


Relevant and meaningful communication to the customer about their delivery is essential, and with expectations about the level of this communication, its essential that brands pay close attention to getting the details right. 

6. The importance of Tracking.

Tracking is of significant importance to UK shoppers with 63% saying they would track every item if there was an option to do so.


Customers want to be able to check the status and receive updates on the whereabouts of their order. 65% want to be able to track an item with more than half wishing to track the progress throughout the whole delivery journey.


This means that tracking is also a key issue for retailers and their customer service teams, a Scurri survey showed that 20% of all orders generate a tracking support call or contact.


The majority of retailers, 86% of rely on customers using courier websites to track parcels but it is possible to offer your own branded tracking pages. (For instance, using Scurri).


62% of retailers surveyed in this report want to implement advanced communication methods in their delivery processes. Offering sophisticated tracking is an excellent way of providing a frictionless delivery experience to your customer.

7. Alternative Delivery Locations.

82% of older shoppers (55+) prefer home delivery as opposed to 50% of younger shoppers (18-34s). 2 out of 3 people cite ‘home’ as their preferred delivery location, however 26% want the ability to change the delivery location after their order has been dispatched. 


Customers also trust a number of alternatives to delivery at home. Preferences for alternate locations go as follows:


  • 71% Post office
  • 67% Delivery to a friend
  • 64% Royal Mail customer service point
  • 60% Delivery to a neighbour


Retailers providing alternative locations is expected by today’s consumer. 

8. Sustainability

When it comes to sustainability, eCommerce delivery has a huge role to play. Global shipping volumes are set to reach 200 Billion parcels by 2025, (Pitney Bowes) and this has a huge impact on carbon emissions. 


Shoppers are becoming more conscious about their choices and demanding retailers address issues such as packaging waste, single-use plastic, empty space in boxes etc. There are many aspects that retailers can improve from sustainable materials in delivery to eco-friendly transport, using zero-emissions vehicles and carriers. 

9. Click & Collect

An increasingly popular alternative to next day delivery. Customers can pick up their item the day after ordering at a time of their convenience. More than half of shoppers say they have used this service. What were the reasons that shoppers love click and collect?


  • 56% say because it’s free
  • 43% say convenience
  • 31% say because it’s cheaper
  • 21% because it gave them control


If you have a bricks & mortar, it’s a no brainer to introduce this service if you haven’t already. This can also lead to convenient returns as shoppers can return any unwanted items on the spot.

10. What shoppers expect from Returns.

3 in 5 shoppers say they wouldn’t shop with a retailer after a difficult returns experience. 


What shoppers expect from returns:


  • 88% say free returns
  • 84% say convenient opening hours to make a return
  • 88% say proof of return
  • 83% say a returns location close to their home


Returns need to be factored into any online order, 19% of UK shoppers will abandon a shopping cart if free returns are not offered.

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