January 28, 2019

Our top 10 trends for 2019: trends six to ten

Following on from our last piece here are our next five top tips for what to look out for and think about in the 12 months ahead when it comes to all things delivery: 

Turning the tide on returns

With returns reaching levels of nearly half of all sales in some sectors, retailers are looking to take back some control. At one end of the spectrum Amazon chose to ban serial returners in 2018 but we anticipate a wide suite of subtler measures to be introduced in 2019…

6. Rating your returners

Few retailers can afford to follow Amazon’s lead and ban customers but we expect to see a growing number embracing the idea of rewarding their ‘good returners’. Expect to see tiered systems becoming the norm with serial returners paying for the privilege but those that use the system well and sparingly being rewarded with free returns.

7. Tightening the returns window

We also expect to see a growing number of retailers shortening their returns terms to maximise the chances of items being returned within their full price window. But to avoid consumer backlash retailers will need to find new ways of making shorter time frames feasible with a multitude of convenience led returns solutions.

8. Try before you buy

For the retailers that can afford it, this will become a mega trend that goes some way to addressing the ‘phantom economy’ created by sales that become returns. 

But to become established as the phenomenon it has the potential to be ‘Try before you buy’ will need to be backed up by rock solid tech that gives both consumers and retailers visibility and peace of mind. 

Personalisation injected into the C&C experience

9. C&C viewed as a springboard rather than a journey end point

Retailers are increasingly waking up to the true value of C&C. Instead of seeing it as the purely functional end point of the consumer journey they’re seeing it afresh as the final brand touch-point.

In 2019 we’ll see increasing numbers of brands investing in making this a touch-point to remember and giving the final exchange as much thought as the user experience until that point. 

We’ll also see brand agnostic host collection stores investing in smart tech to enable them to maximise the potential for incremental sales through bespoke offers tailored to those collecting parcels.

Collaboration will be the watchword

10. Better together

All of these shifts will require innovation, creativity and expertise that logistics providers and retailers alike are waking up to the fact that few can provide alone. 

Collaboration will be the key to giving consumers what they want, to effectively blurring the online to offline shopping experience and to optimising sales in both increasingly tough worlds.

Bring it on 2019! It’s going to be one to remember…

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