The “Logistics for eCommerce Report 2017”, authored by Consorzio Netcomm and published last June, states that Italy has 21,6 million online shoppers. 17 million of them don’t have a doorman at their home address. Among the 63,3% that daily commute to office space only 35,3% are entitled to receive their parcels at work. You do some math and it turns out that 76,4% of Italian online shoppers receive their purchases at home. 22,9% without having received the slightest post-purchase communication about the delivery.
eCommerce is the future and general Retail is trying to adapt to this reality. But you don’t just open an online store: you have to keep pace with Amazon and Ebay by beating them where they feel the weight of their own gigantism.
A memorable user experience, going right to the delivery of the item, is the key for survival. “The next revolution will be about the last mile”: said Netcomm’s Mario Bagliani at the last Forum, held in Milan in May.
Right after him Accenture presented the results of another study: 87% of the women and 84% of the men they interviewed consider delivery options essential for a good eCommerce experience.
Nexive’s Valentina Pavan went further, theorizing a shift from customer satisfaction to customer well being. Shoppers don’t need to be “only” satisfied: they have to be at the center of everything, receive more than what they expect, be cuddled.
Marketplaces are able to deliver really fast over-Country and in some selected cities they even sport same-day or two-hour deliveries. But what happens if you’re not home at the moment of delivery? You have to personally get in touch with the courier and try to get a second run at a better time of day. If you don’t you’ll have to go at the courier’s warehouse and retrieve your parcel. This is tolerated because huge marketplaces offer incredible inventories, unbeatable prices and free shipping. When it happens to a smaller eCommerce it’s safe to say that the customer is lost: shops pay for couriers’ sins.
That’s why delivery options will soon become more important than sheer velocity. Not everybody is in a rush but everybody likes to be in control. Milkman, who does same-day too, is betting hard on a time-window model for home deliveries in which the shopper is entitled to decide day and hour of delivery.
It’s a worldwide trend: in the U.K. 44% of Retailers say that time windows have a high priority, and 25% admit that, in the immediate future, they will become essential. (Source: eDelivery & InternetRetailing: “Are you delivering what your customers want?”).
It’s all about freedom: you choose the day (Saturdays included, in which delivery is desired by 26% of shoppers) and the hour, immediately knowing how much you’ll pay. You’re then followed step by step until delivery, with the chance to reschedule or cancel up to the last minute, receive updates (91,8%) and follow the van on a real-time map (25%).
There’s no eCommerce without logistics and in the future there will be no logistics if you’re unwilling to be part of the eCommerce experience: an added value built around the shopper.