Peak eCommerce periods can be an overwhelming time for retail teams large and small. The Australian Retailers Association has partnered with Australia Post to share helpful resources to aid retailers to provide the best and most seamless online shopping experience to their customers.
Australia Post is preparing for one of the busiest times of the year, which means that your retail business is too.
With 3.4 million Australian households shopping online at least fortnightly*, a great delivery experience can help you stand out from the crowd. Australia Post have developed a helpful toolkit, containing all the tips and tools you’ll need to keep deliveries on track for a great customer experience during eCommerce peaks such as the Christmas period.
From packaging and sorting best practice to manifesting and returns advice, it’s all in there – including where to find support if you need it.
Five ways to deliver a great customer experience
1. Give customers choice of delivery speed
Are you sending within Australia? Try offering Express Post alongside Parcel Post by adding a check box or drop-down menu at checkout.
Are you sending overseas? Try offering International Express alongside International Standard for customers who need items delivered sooner.
2. Make your returns policy and process clear
The delivery experience doesn’t stop at the delivery. Your returns process is just as important as the purchase process to help ensure happy customers.
- Consider extending your returns period for the holiday season
- Review your returns process – do you offer a customer friendly returns process?
- Make your returns information easy to find on your website
41% of consumers have abandoned a retailer following a poor returns experience **
3. Use address validation tools
Say goodbye to incorrectly labelled parcels by adding address validation tools to your eCommerce platform. Address validations tools can help you:
- Reduce print wastage
- Provide a good customer delivery experience
- Reduce excess delivery costs and returned articles
- Save time managing less customer queries
4. Offer Collection Points
With over 47 million parcels sent to an Australia Post Collection Point in FY22, it’s important to offer customers the option of Collection Points at checkout. There are over 5,000 locations across Australia where customers can choose to have their items delivered to:
- A Post Office
- 24/7 Parcel Locker
- PO Box
- 240+ retail partners including supermarkets and pharmacies
- Left in a safe place at their home by selecting ‘Safe Drop’
5. Set realistic customer expectations for delivery times
Give your customers confidence by setting clear expectations around estimated parcel arrival time up-front.
Be as clear as you can about timing. Make delivery time and sending date information is easy to find on your website and in your communications.
Allow time for your pick and pack processes, not just Australia Post’s delivery time frame.
Consider last lodgement dates when planning your sales promotions to ensure customers receive their items on time.
Be open and honest with customers around service impacts. Keep on top of domestic and international delivery time estimates.
57% of survey respondents said certainty around when their delivery would arrive was more important than getting it quickly ***
Christmas lodgement dates
It’s important to lodge your business parcels as early as possible, and by the below dates at the latest, so they have the best chance of reaching your customers in time for Christmas.
Encouraging your customers to shop early will give their deliveries the best chance of arriving in time for Christmas.
* Australia Post Inside Australian Online Shopping report, 2022
** Making the Difference -ShipStation Returns Report 2022
*** Consumer Parcel Receivers Survey, AP, 2022