Retailers risk Christmas e-commerce meltdown

Survey says vendors need to sort out delivery issues as consumers cant stop buying online

Retailers face long-term brand damage this Christmas as consumers continue to shop online this year. According to findings from a study of shopper satisfaction by Zebra Technologies, problems that have dogged the sector in the past are still not putting people off spending online.
Eight out of ten people reported that previous bad experiences wont hinder how much of their Christmas shopping they do online this year, said the survey, which was carried out across the UK. The results are, however, in sharp contrast to the devotion shown to e-commerce. Further findings from the study showed that almost half of people 47 per cent ranked delayed deliveries, or goods not being delivered at all, as their biggest problem with online shopping.
In fact, delivery disasters ranked higher than other retail issues, such as products being damaged on arrival and inconvenient returns processes.
The results show a worrying trend for e-commerce as a whole, said Becky Brookes, retail manager at Zebra. There has been a lot of speculation around the record numbers of online purchases that are going to be made this year, and the surge will cause headaches in the warehouse as activity levels hit an all-time high this Christmas.
Some forward-thinking retailers and delivery companies have capitalised on simple innovations such as mobile technology for data capture and printing, improving speed and efficiency across the supply chain from warehouse to doorstep. Retailers who are not organised in their approach face meltdown as e-commerce continues unabated. Those that are not up to scratch this year could experience long-term damage to their brands as people keep on buying yet find no presents under the tree on Christmas day. The knock-on effect will be most evident next Christmas, but is likely to be felt sooner.


About Zebra Technologies
Zebra Technologies Corp. (Nasdaq: ZBRA) delivers innovative and reliable on-demand printing solutions for business improvement and security applications in 100 countries around the world. More than 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Zebra-brand printers.
A broad range of applications benefit from Zebra-brand thermal bar code, smart label, receipt, and card printers, resulting in enhanced security, increased productivity, improved quality, lower costs, and better customer service.
The company has sold more than five million printers, including RFID printer/encoders and wireless mobile solutions, and also offers software, connectivity solutions and printing supplies.

Zebra Technologies Europe Ltd, headquartered in the United Kingdom, provides product and speciality label sales and support, including oversight of offices in Benelux, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the United Arab Emirates.

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