34.9% of e-retailers give the gift of free shipping all year long, says a new Shop.org report.
Free shipping is one of the biggest considerations for online retailers and online consumers alike. In the Shop.org survey 91 retailers were polled. Of those, 34.9% said they already offer free shipping year-round. (In 2012 it was only 23.1%)
Of those retailers who do not offer free shipping year-round 16.3% said they would begin offering it as a holiday promotion. That means over half of the retailers plan to offer free shipping for the holidays.
Another finding in this survey is that many retailers have planned to start marketing holiday promotions by Halloween. This is in large part due to the shortened holiday shopping season between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This year there are only 26 days, last year there were 32 shopping days.
Another poll shows consumers are concerned for more than just price. Still free shipping is a big win for consumers. In a MarketLive Inc poll of 1,000 consumers 91% said they would take advantage of free standard shipping. Nearly a third said free shipping may be enough to encourage them to pay full price for an order.
That said, 87% of consumers want a guarantee that an item will be delivered by the date promised. 72% would like the option to buy or reserve a product online and then pick it up in store.
“Online shoppers have become quite savvy. They know how to comparison shop from their mobile phones and they have come to expect certain things like free shipping,” says Ken Burke, founder and chairman of MarketLive. “But our survey also uncovered many tactical things that online retailers can do this holiday season—like tangible gift cards, 24/7 customer service reps and online ratings and social sharing—to attract customers, retain margins, and compete successfully this holiday season.”
How are you getting ready for the holiday season?