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Shopping sites see spike in bad reviews as Christmas approaches

17 October 2017 - 09:42 by Graham Miller

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A study from Trustpilot has revealed that consumers tend to leave negative reviews in greater numbers during the last two months of the year, with delivery disappointments blamed for this problematic trend.

Millions of people carry out safe shopping online in preparation for the festive season, so it is no surprise that complications can arise as the entire e-commerce infrastructure gets busier. But analysts found that there are a few specific causes of complaints which retailers need to do more to address during the Christmas rush.

The lowest scoring reviews tend to include mentions of poor customer service and sluggish delivery times during November and December. Shipping-related complaints reach their peak in the final few weeks before Christmas as shoppers become less tolerant of delays and other niggles.

The most interesting and understandable statistic thrown up by this report is that December 20th is the day of the year on which the most negative reviews are posted, trumping every other 24 hour period as consumers clamour for retailers to get their orders to them on time before it is too late.

A number of other phrases commonly found in one and two star reviews of sites which offer safe shopping online relate to next day delivery promises not being fulfilled and the need to wait for a response from a retailer if something goes wrong.

Online sales are expected to be stronger than ever this Christmas, but if deliveries continue to prove to be a disappointment then shoppers will probably end up choosing click and collect as an option more regularly. This is good news for high street outlets with an online presence, as it will lead to greater levels of footfall in-store while also helping with e-commerce sales as well.