Three quarters of consumers experience delivery errors with online orders

delivery errors

No less than 77 per cent of consumers in the Netherlands and Belgium who made an online purchase in the past three months experienced delivery errors. This is the conclusion of research conducted by Descartes Systems Group into consumer confidence in home delivery in e-commerce. The study provides retailers and logistics organisations with important insights into consumer preferences and concerns about purchases and delivery.

In recent years e-commerce has received an enormous boost. Descartes’ research, which surveyed 1019 consumers in the Netherlands and Belgium, shows that 59 per cent have increased their online purchases since the corona pandemic. The most important reason for continuing to buy online is convenience (54%), followed by the fact that the online ordering process is becoming easier (49%). Those who do not shop online indicate, as their main reason, that they prefer to see a product first (48%).

Most consumers satisfied with delivery services

Most Dutch and Belgian consumers are satisfied with the delivery and return services. In fact, 77 per cent are completely satisfied with these services. Nevertheless, only half of those questioned (54%) experienced no problems when using online return services at home. And although three out of four consumers report having experienced delivery errors in the past three months, this does not hold them back from making more online purchases in the future.

“E-commerce and home delivery present opportunities and challenges for retailers and logistics organisations,” said Chris Jones, EVP industry and services at Descartes. “Poor delivery performance can be catastrophic for retailers: 25 per cent lost confidence in that delivery company, while 20 per cent chose not to order from that retailer again.”

Problems are time-related

The most common delivery problems are all time related, either with the time of arrival or the length of the delivery. According to Descartes, this is also not currently being addressed by courier companies; only a small percentage offer options for delivery date and time window.

Descartes’ research further analyses consumer buying behaviour in e-commerce, the type of goods purchased, the frequency of purchase and which goods are delivered. It also provides insight into delivery services, costs and performance. Furthermore, the research analyses the importance consumers attach to delivery performance and the impact of delivery failures on future purchases.