Online retailers in Germany should better inform their customers about the status of their orders. One in four ecommerce companies only sends a single email after checkout, a study about Ecommerce shipping in Germany shows.
This is one of the conclusions after the shipping services of 100 of the largest online stores in Germany were analyzed. ParcelLab, which released the ‘E-Commerce Shipping Study 2020’, says these numbers are especially problematic in current times of uncertainty.
Still room for improvement
The researchers placed test orders with major German ecommerce companies for the second time (the first test was in 2018). This year’s edition shows that retailers are now focusing more on shipping communication, but still, there’s room for improvement at most major German online retailers.
Many retailers don’t communicate after the purchase
Compared to 2018, there are now nine (instead of eleven) retailers who don’t communicate with the customers at all after they have placed an order. But a quarter of the online retailers still stop communicating post-purchase after just one email. And there’s a very big chance this is just the order confirmation email.
9 retailers didn’t communicate with customers post-purchase.
Customers are waiting in vain
So, these customers are waiting in vain for any information about their order. They don’t know the current status of the order, where their parcel is, when it will be delivered or from which neighbor they can pick it up.
ParcelLab rightly remarks that this kind of information is even more important now there’s a pandemic going on. Ever since the coronavirus Covid-19 broke out, delivery times are much longer. “Delivery times are going from three to four days to several weeks in some cases. And this is an even bigger issue when the product pages are not displaying these delays.”
‘Tracking link should lead back to their own shop’
The company thinks it’s important that online retailers in Germany inform their customers in real-time if the order status changes. “Ideally, the tracking link for parcel tracking would not lead back to the logistics provider’s site, but instead back to the retailer’s own shop. This is where retailers can explain to their customers in their own words, and in an understandable way, the current status of their order.” The analysis shows that only 30 retailers took advantage of this opportunity.
Only 30 retailers showed parcel tracking in their own online shop.
1 in 5 let customers choose between logistics providers
And when it comes to the parcel delivery itself, there is also room for improvement. The survey shows that only about one-fifth of the largest online shops let their customers choose between different logistics providers.
A third didn’t share a specific delivery date
The study also shows that almost a third of retailers didn’t share a specific delivery date. The rest of the ecommerce companies gave an average delivery time of 3.26 working days. Mind you: this was before the coronavirus pandemic. In comparison with 2018, a lot fewer companies are offering express delivery: 40 in 2018 and just 25 now. With same-day delivery, the number of online retailers offering this dropped from eleven to three.