With exceptionally high volumes of post this year, due to increasing numbers of consumers choosing to shop online more than ever, a new report released today by fulfilment provider Huboo reveals the majority of consumers think retailers are not up to the job.
Almost all (85%) of consumers have bought Christmas presents online this year, citing speed of delivery and the appeal of doing shopping in their own time as the two key reasons; good news for eCommerce retailers.
However, more than half of consumers (54%) have had a bad delivery experience with parcels arriving late or even damaged. The maximum most people are willing to wait for a product is four days, with 14% expecting it within 48 hours. As a direct result, nearly a third (28%) of consumers have decided to not buy from that company again regardless of the fact of the bad delivery was their fault or the couriers.
Huboo, which helps over 750 eCommerce retailers of all sizes access a complete end-to-end fulfilment operation, has recently tripled the size of the warehouse space in order to cope with demand and process orders quickly and efficiently.
Martin Bysh, co-Founder of Huboo, says: “This year has fuelled online shopping staggeringly fast. With high street retailers forced to shut their physical shops online orders naturally spiked, and with little warning. Thousands of retailers – from the big brands down to the independents and start-ups – simply don’t have the infrastructure in place to fulfil the volume of orders they are receiving, quickly. Consumers were willing to be patient during the first months of the pandemic, but that goodwill is wearing thin.”
In fact, half (52%) of consumers think that high street retailers were not doing enough to compete with online pre the pandemic, and the same number (52%) think that retailers need to do more in terms of dealing with delivery workarounds during the pandemic and it shouldn’t be impacting consumers. A further 54% would spend more with smaller, independent retailers and businesses if they were more convenient and offered quicker delivery.
Jasmine Birtles, consumer champion and founder of moneymagpie.com, says: “Consumers have become accustomed to the quick turnaround of products that many dedicated eCommerce retailers have perfected. Sadly quite a lot of smaller, independent retailers aren’t living up to this consumer expectation. They need to get to grips with a solution – and get to grips quickly – in order to keep customers happy and coming back for more.”
Historically SMBs have been woefully underserved by ecommerce fulfilment providers and forced to go it alone or select fulfilment options designed for much larger retailers. By creating an offering that is accessible to all retailers, including independent businesses, small eCommerce providers and even startup D2C brands, Huboo has defined a new category within UK fulfilment estimated to be worth approximately £1bn annually. Within this category, Huboo is now second only to Amazon.
Bysh continues: “The growth of online shopping has led to a boom in demand for third party logistics solutions. They’re the quickest and cheapest solution for eCommerce and high street retailers looking to grow or diversify with both large scale requirements or even to extend a specific range or channel, as well as move to target direct-to-consumer.”
Huboo uses unique ‘micro hub’ technology to enable online retailers of all sizes to access a complete end-to-end fulfilment operation within minutes. While many businesses find it hard to access efficient, cost-effective fulfilment to support their e-Commerce businesses, Huboo utilises software to drive a smarter, more productive and human-centric warehouse.
Each ‘hub’ replicates the inputs, processes and outputs of a complete warehouse within a few hundred square feet, with Huboo’s management software keeping tabs on every item throughout the fulfilment process, with a dedicated Hub Manager running each one.
The company’s software provides everything from transaction management and quality control, stock control, order tracking and billing information to integration with popular sales channels and marketplaces, such as Amazon, eBay and Shopify, enabling the company to directly receive and process retailers’ orders in real-time.
Huboo has reported extraordinary growth recently. In just 18 months, the business has grown from two employees, 60 clients and £20,000 in monthly recurring revenues (MRR) to 210 employees, over 750 clients and over £1m MRR – a growth rate of 50x. To cope with the increasing demand for eCommerce orders Huboo has expanded into two more warehouses in the last two months, adding to its existing two and doubling the overall warehouse space.