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Nearly one in three (31 per cent) of British online shoppers may have experienced problems with their orders this Christmas, says research conducted of behalf of JDA between 29-30 December. Its sample of 2398 adults seems to

bear out the backlash from consumers as supermarkets cancelled home deliveries, large retailers like M&S amended their delivery promises, and carriers halted making collections from retailers. Not a good way to start the Christmas shopping season. Te JDA research found that 49 per cent of its sample suffered missed deliveries, with 45 per cent experiencing late deliveries or not receiving their goods at all. Our personal experience here bore this out causing us to turn to the premium next day services from Citylink to ensure that important Supplier of the Year Awards trophies were delivered on time, which they were luckily, given the news that broke on Christmas Day, but that’s another story. Poor service is not the kind of news

to start a New Year with as, inevitably, a single disappointing experience during the often stressful run-up to Christmas can result in the loss of very good customers even when the actual problem was caused by the carrier rather than the retailer. As widely reported Click & Collect grew in

popularity largely to counter reliance on home delivery but here too there were problems with stores and collection points unable to cope with the demand and experiencing problems with delayed deliveries themselves. Long waiting times for service, disorganised or inexperienced staff, lack of dedicated areas for Click & Collect pick ups, and “lost” parcels were very common complaints. Tis flies in the face of the reasons why Click & Collect was chosen - 61 per cent of those surveyed opted for Click & Collect to avoid paying for delivery, with 53 per cent choosing it for convenience. Some customers (outside of this survey group) have since cottoned on, and complained in the wider media, that whilst Click & Collect delivery may be marketed as being “free”, the reality is that it can be very costly for the customer and very inconvenient indeed if requiring several trips to be made to eventually be able to be handed a parcel.


Shorrock, retail strategy director at JDA said “With growing numbers of consumers opting to shop with retailers that offer the option of “Click & Collect”, those that can ensure fulfilment excellence will be the ultimate winners. Indeed our research shows that nearly one in five online shoppers surveyed used an alternative retailer this Christmas as a result of their preferred one not having items available

“In hindsight, there remains massive room for improvement particularly if retailers decide to leverage shopping “events” like Black Friday...”

Issue Number 223 Jan/Feb 2015

or having delivery times that met their requirements.” In hindsight, there remains massive

room for improvement particularly if retailers decide to leverage shopping “events” like Black Friday which resulted in pure chaos in operations centres up and down the country, meltdown for some of the carriers, and disappointed customers. All whilst retailers bore the true cost of lower margins and reduced demand once these sale days were over. Most multichannel retailers are now reporting increased demand over November and December, as they would and should, but as the old saying goes “turnover is vanity, profit is sanity” and it will be a while before the financial implications of Christmas 2014 are shared.

New event for Operations & Fulfilment professionals

Te DCA is staging a new conference for its members called Operations & Fulfilment Excellence . Te full day programme will provide much needed focus on all aspects of operations, including delivery and customer service strategies. Te date: 14th May 2015 at Leicester Tigers. More details including an earlybird registration offer can be found on page 9.

Plus lots more inside! Inside: Supplier of the Year Awards Winners

ECMOD Direct Commerce Awards Entry Details

ISSN 2049-8993

Official Magazine for Members


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