Treat Online Shoppers Well or Risk Damage to Brand

Treat Online Shoppers Well or Risk Damage to Brand

A new study shows 64% of online shoppers have received a damaged good and 75% will share this with others. This doesn't bode well for a brand since 80% of a company's future revenue will come from just 20% of its existing customers, and word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20%-50% of all purchasing decisions.

A majority of shoppers, 64%, have received a damaged goods, and this doesn’t bode well for a company’s brand. A new study from OSM Worldwide says that these unhappy customers are sharing their frustrations. In fact 75% of online shoppers report that they are very likely or likely to share their frustrations over a damaged package with friends and family.

This is a troubling statistic since experts predict 80% of a company's future revenue will come from just 20% of its existing customers, and word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20%-50% of all purchasing decisions.

According to the study, a third of consumers would contact customer service if a non-urgent package arrived just one day late. Even after contacting a retailer, two-thirds of consumers will still express frustrations to friends and family members.

Beyond word of mouth, 18% say they will share frustrations on social media.

“We’ve found that not only do today’s customers have much higher shipping demands, they’re also more likely to complain when their demands aren’t met,” said Gaston Curk, CEO of OSM Worldwide.

“We want to help retailers and other shippers understand that at a time when shipping is such a prominent part of the customer journey, it’s increasingly important to put customers first. When customers aren’t happy, retailers risk revenue and brand reputations.”

OSM also found that customers have clear preferences for shipping carriers as well as how often and on what medium they receive status updates. If their preferences aren’t matched by retailers, the study shows that customers may shop elsewhere. Other noteworthy findings include:

  • More than 36% of consumers prefer one shipping service provider over another when given the choice at checkout, and 31% of them would choose not to shop with a retailer because of its choice of shipping service provider.
  • To monitor order status, 76% of those with a preferred carrier use an email tracking number, 42% use email notifications and 31% use a mobile app.
  • Over half of online shoppers expect order status updates to be as current as every few hours or even more recent.
  • Forty percent of online shoppers check an item’s order status at least once per day.

“It’s not surprising to us that customers want to watch their packages so closely,” said Curk. “The expectation today is always quick and cost-effective shipping. When the shopper can’t confirm the status of their order, they in turn lose trust in the brand. Seeing how often customers check on packages makes that risk tangible for brands and they would be wise to improve their shipping experience in response.”

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