E-Commerce Fulfillment Solutions: Free vs. Speed

E-Commerce Fulfillment Solutions: Free vs. Speed

During the iconic scene from Back to the Future where Marty McFly performs a head banging, amp-kicking guitar solo that caught the 1955 teenagers off guard, it was quite clear that he didn’t understand what his audience wanted.  There is a lesson to be learned here 61 years later in the world of e-commerce.  One of the biggest challenges for e-commerce retailers is meeting the fulfillment and delivery demands of their consumers while staying competitive. 

A recent trend, while largely spurred by retailers like Amazon, is same-day delivery.  In fact TechCrunch reported earlier this week that Amazon has expanded this service into 11 new markets.  The fact that this option exists and is growing, has put some potentially undue pressure on other e-commerce entities as well as brick and mortar outlets and their online channels. 

Statista released a study in 2015 that showed a trend of consumers opting less often for quicker delivery.  Only 15% of U.S. consumers chose 2-day delivery, while 67% opted for the 3-5 day option.  The truth is customers are more focused on saving money than speedy delivery.  Another recent survey from eFulfillment Service showed nearly 70% of respondents reported they preferred the least expensive option over an expedited delivery. 

This same study showed that 74% of the respondents felt that the best way to improve the customer experience would be to have a free shipping option.  So while many companies are finding themselves prioritizing strategies to meet faster delivery demands, these efforts might be misplaced.  However streamlining fulfillment and transportation operations to expedite orders can have some collateral benefits like: increased efficiency, cost savings and improved customer service.

For over 75 years Barrett Distribution Centers has met the fulfillment, warehousing and transportation needs of its customers that span a variety of industries.  Barrett has experience with e-commerce and offers a focus on technology, visibility and the creation of customized supply chain plans.

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