The coronavirus has changed the way we shop. Many stores have been forced to close their doors and many more have been driven into bankruptcy. Even where they have re-opened, additional sanitary measures prohibit the usual in-store experience, and foot traffic has ultimately remained sparse. Meanwhile, online orders have soared to astronomical heights. 

The lockdown-driven shift online has added further noise to an already crowded digital marketplace. Retailers are under pressure to differentiate their offering through convenience and personalization. In particular, brands are scrutinizing their experience “beyond the buy button”, which has long been overlooked and is ripe for improvement. 

Shoppers want just as much ease and convenience through tracking, delivery, and even returns, as they do at checkout. Our analysis shows that 57% would be more likely to shop with a retailer offering an easy returns policy, and 69% say tracking is one of their top three buying considerations. 

These are the measures the best brands are taking now to ensure their post-purchase experience stands out.  

Offer dynamic delivery options 

Online shoppers want to receive their parcel in a way that suits them, whether that’s next-day delivery to their door, pick up in-store, or at a PUDO point on their way to work. Customers want delivery options to match their priorities – whether it’s speed, cost, or even environmental impact. 

The brands that succeed in the All-Delivery Era will be those with a breadth of options that span all these needs, as well as the ability to serve shoppers the specific modes that suit them best. 

Provide clearly specified delivery timeframes  

Despite the many advantages of online shopping, one factor that continues to deter consumers is the anxious wait between purchase and delivery. Customers are hugely reassured by specific and accurate delivery timeframes, conveyed on the product page. Not only does this communicate a clear promise to shoppers, it also helps them weigh up their other options against considerations like cost and environmental impact. 

Ensure convenient returns options  

Retailers may have historically preferred to bury their heads in the sand when it comes to online returns, but the fact remains – consumers won’t buy from you unless they know they can easily return items that don’t suit. 

Customers want to choose the way they return their items, in much the same way they want to choose how they receive them. Some prefer to return in-store, where they can easily try another size. Others would prefer to drop the item off at a PUDO point, or even pay extra for a courier to arrive at their door. The most successful retailers will have the infrastructure to allow customers to return items in the way that’s most convenient for them. 

The All-Delivery Era has arrived. The only question that remains is how you will adapt your own business to make the most of it? The most successful brands will be those that can differentiate their online offering through a convenient, personalized and reliable experience from the buy button and beyond. 

Find out more about the All-Delivery Era, and how you can reinvent your ecommerce experience. Download the Metapack eCommerce Delivery Benchmark Report.