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Retailers could be losing out on £1.2bn in Christmas sales opportunities

New research has revealed that one in six of the UK’s top retailers are failing to take advantage of £1.2billion in last-minute Christmas sales because they don’t offer premium delivery options.

The research, carried out by ecommerce and digital agency, Visualsoft, found that 17 per cent of the UK’s top 240 retailers did not offer premium delivery, despite it being expected by the majority of shoppers.

Conservative estimates show online sales on 22–23 December – the last two days on which shoppers can receive goods via a premium or next-day service – totalled over 1.2billion in 2016.

Offering only limited shipping options will, therefore, cost many retailers dearly.

Despite 32 per cent of people expecting click and collect to be an option, the service was only offered by 62 per cent of retailers evaluated in the report.

Additionally, only 19 cent of retailers offered incentivised free delivery, for instance for large orders or new customers.

“For the majority of retailers, December delivers the biggest revenue boost of the entire year,” says Visualsoft’s chief sales officer, Tim Johnson. “This is, therefore, a spending period that retailers cannot afford to get wrong – let alone miss out on completely.

He continues, “As online shopping becomes more widely used, so does the variety of needs and tastes it needs to accommodate.

“Failing to meet these expectations can be a costly mistake. It is therefore highly surprising that the UK’s biggest players are still not offering a premium option on delivery during this key period.

“Many of us have been there: it’s close to the wire and you decide against making a purchase as you’re unsure if that all-important gift for a loved one will make it on time.

“If retailers can offer a guaranteed solution to this concern then they stand in excellent stead to take advantage of the Christmas opportunity this year.

“There are ways around the issue. For example, if retailers do not have chain of physical stores, they should look into click and collect through a network of collection points like Collect+.

“It’s also worth incentivising spend with free premium delivery for the highest order values, as this will both build reassurance that a parcel will arrive on time and increase basket spend, too.”



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