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Delivery delays affect online shopping

30 December 2018 - 12:02 by Graham Miller

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The massive influx of orders placed via safe shopping online in the weeks leading up to Christmas still managed to prove a little too much for retailers to handle, even with months to prepare for this traditional peak period of sales.

A study published last week by Accenture found that one-third of the biggest e-commerce outlets in the country are taking longer to ship packages to customers than advertised, according to the Telegraph.

The festive shopping season in 2018 saw deliveries typically being delayed by up to 48 hours when compared with 2017, which is in part due to the sheer number of orders that were placed and the fact that even relatively small snarl-ups in the logistics infrastructure can lead to major issues for customers.

Another problem pinpointed in the study is that consumers are now having to face up to higher minimum basket values if they want to take advantage of free shipping as part of their order. This has increased by five per cent in the past 12 months, meaning that it is harder to get a low-cost bargain without having to splash out on a delivery charge.

It is unsurprising that there has also been a spike in the number of complaints made to retailers during December, based on statistics issued by Resolver. Customers have raised issues in three times the volume this year than in the last Christmas shopping period, causing concerns about just how poorly-prepared some retailers were for the number of packages they would need to ship in 2018.

Thankfully, the weather has not hampered festive deliveries, meaning that it is easier to identify the problems as being caused by the infrastructure. Hopefully, lessons will be learned this year and more deliveries will be on time in 2019.