UPS has warned retailers that the success of next-day delivery services could define their success during the forthcoming Christmas peak.
With lockdown leading to a boom in e-commerce, with nearly 30% of retail trade being conducted online during this period according to the ONS, and seemingly no indication that this trend will be reversed. Total online retail sales in August were 46.8% higher than in pre-pandemic February – and pre-pandemic February had a higher volume online sales than November and December in 2019, according to the ONS.
Oli Horne, e-commerce marketing manager at UPS, told Logistics Manager: “As we enter a global recession, savvy shoppers will be looking for the best deals, and this means that the popularity for shopping online is only set to increase as we enter this year’s peak shopping season.
“Next-day delivery will continue to be a fundamental way in which retailers can respond to rising consumer demands for more convenient delivery solutions.”
Horne said that UPS was focusing on services that “enable customers to choose a convenient time and place to receive or pick up packages” and pointed to the recent introduction of its Saturday service.
“Overall, the beneficiaries of the recent e-commerce boom are those businesses who have been able to pivot and adapt quickly to meet customer needs,” he said.
“Any business who has embraced and/or pivoted towards an e-commerce model could see a long-term benefit as we move towards post-pandemic recovery.
“The pressure on British high-streets and lower footfall across traditional bricks-and-mortar stores has already been changing the face and ultimately, the future of retail long before Covid-19 hit the global economy. Investing in digital infrastructure is crucial for ensuring future success in such a challenging and evolving retail marketplace, independent of the sector, size or scale of a business.” he said.
For an in-depth look into how the logistics sector is meeting the rise in demand for home delivery this Christmas, check out the October issue of Logistics Manager.