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Same day demand surges as expectations rise

The proportion of consumers thinking same day delivery is important has increased from a third (33%) in 2020 to more than half (56%) in 2022, according to new data from ParcelHero. Demand for next day delivery has also surged.

The change in demand follows the increase of online shoppers during the pandemic, with online sales accounting for 19% of the overall retail market in February 2020 compared to an average 30% now.

ParcelHero’s head of consumer research, David Jinks, said the pandemic’s focus on delivery has led to increased consumer expectations today. “We’re now starting to see the full impact of Covid-19 on our shopping habits,” he said. “Increasing knowledge of delivery options transformed consumers’ expectations of what services their favourite brands should be offering.”

He said consumers now expect retailers to match the likes of Amazon Prime in terms of the delivery options they offer. “Online shoppers have dramatically changed their expectations. Significantly, 56% now think same-day delivery options are important (up from 33% in 2020), 62% expect next-day delivery options (up from 44% in 2020) and 55% want specific, 2-hour time slots (up from 44% in 2020).”

“Prior to the pandemic, most online purchases were for non-essential items such as entertainment products and electronics. Over the last two years, online buyers have become wary of the high street and out-of-town shopping malls. Many have switched to ordering household essentials such as groceries online, with same-day delivery options increasingly popular. Consumers now want to have all their shopping – luxury items as well as household essentials – delivered on the same day.”

But of course this comes at a cost, and although 64% of shoppers said they are willing to pay more for same-day deliveries, Jinks warned it’s unlikely this would cover the upfront cost of the huge changes in supply chains and distribution centres needed and also warned that consumers were less willing than two years ago to wait for greener deliveries.

“This newfound need for speed could come at a heavy price for the environment as well as retailers. In 2020, 74% of us said we were happy to wait longer for purchases if it meant the delivery method was more sustainable. In our latest survey, only 61% of purchasers were willing to wait longer for greener deliveries.”

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