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Survey: Consumers have high holiday shipping expectations

Holiday shoppers want quick fulfillment of online purchases.

The desire for quick delivery is re-emerging among consumers as the holiday shopping season begins.

According to a survey of 1,000 U.S. adults from Radial Inc., a bpostgroup company, one in three (33%) surveyed consumers say that the most reasonable timeline for when they expect holiday gifts ordered online to be delivered is two to three days.

Research conducted by Radial in 2020 showed only 14% of surveyed consumers expected their online holiday purchases delivered within two days. However, 34% of consumers surveyed in 2018 expected to receive holiday packages in two days or less, indicating consumers have gone back to pre-pandemic expectations.

In another sign consumers want online delivery as quickly as possible, 46% of respondents said they would select drone delivery if it were available to them in the next year.

Nearly half (46%) of respondents said they will shop the same amount in-store this year compared to 2021, but 58% anticipate increasing the use of online shopping for the 2022 holiday season. One in three respondents anticipate increasing buy online pick-up in-store (BOPIS) usage, and 30% say they expect increasing buy online pick-up curbside (BOPAC) when shopping this holiday season. 

As of late August 2022, 12% of respondents said they have begun holiday shopping, another 18% will start in September. Four in 10 (41%) respondents said they will begin holiday shopping pre-Thanksgiving (October into early November).

Although 38% of respondents said they will modify the volume of gifts they purchase, 40% plan to buy the same amount of gifts as last year.

“The retail sector has undergone significant unpredictability and digital acceleration over the last two years. Supply chain disruptions and evolving consumer behaviors have shifted a formularized market, into a dynamic one. The impact of inflation introduces a new variable for brands to plan and strategize

around this year,” said Laura Ritchey, COO, executive VP, Radial. “To ensure peak operations run smoothly, it is essential that brands focus on inventory management and measure against consumer demand. The need for sound omnichannel offerings will ensure customers get a great experience

regardless of the channel from which their order is fulfilled.”

Consumer expectations around delivery, shipping and CX are increasing
According to the 2022 Holiday Preview from market research data and technology company Numerator, roughly six in 10 (59%) surveyed consumers expect to spend more than $200 on holiday purchases in 2022. Another 12% will spend $150 to $200 and 8% will spend $100 to $150, meaning about eight in 10 (79%) respondents will spend a minimum of $100 during the 2022 holiday season.

Only a combined 12% of respondents plan to spend $50 or less. Despite these robust spending plans, nearly nine in 10 (89%) consumers surveyed by Numerator expect inflation to have an impact on their 2022 holiday shopping and spending, with a combined 59% expecting that the impact will be moderate or significant.

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