Fashion retailers are introducing a range of new online services such as free delivery in a bid to lure shoppers, reveals a new study. Research from digital solutions firm Brightpearl.com also reveals that 44 per cent of fashion retailers are looking to offer free delivery by 2021. Meanwhile, more than a third (34 per cent) plan to offer free returns before the end of the year. Fashion retailers are also racing to offer click-and-collect for online orders, with a quarter surveyed (25 per cent) planning to launch a new service within six months.
“It’s important to address convenience in the last mile of the customer journey,” says CEO Derek O’Carroll. “Though absorbing the costs of both delivery and returns is not without risk for retailers, especially those operating on fine margins in the current climate, it could also be an effective way to expand their customer base.”
However, experts warn than retailers shouldn’t offer customers options they can’t fully support, as this will have a detriment impact on returning shoppers. “It’s admirable that so many brands are offering new services to benefit customers, but one of the most damaging things they can do is promise a service that they don’t have the capability to deliver,” says O’Carroll. “Before thinking of introducing new services to woo customers, retailers must ensure they have the right infrastructure in place to deliver an optimal shopping experience at all ends of the buying journey.”