Paazl Blog

The e-commerce delivery trends to be aware of in 2024

E-commerce delivery has undergone rapid evolution in recent years. Primarily, this has been seen in a huge uptick in the number of deliveries on the road. In 2021, for instance, e-commerce sales were valued at $5.1 trillion worldwide. By 2026, this figure is predicted to reach $7.5 trillion.

When creating your 2024 delivery strategy, it’s crucial to not only plan for the market’s continued growth but to anticipate customer behavior and desires to stay ahead of the competition.

Here are a few delivery trends to remain aware of for the year ahead:

1. Offer your customers choice

Although there is a great deal of focus on improving delivery speed, what many customers want is not necessarily the fastest option but the ability to choose when their delivery arrives. For instance, a recent UPS survey found that 55% of shoppers would choose a slower delivery option if it meant it would be free of charge.

Flexibility around how deliveries are made is another important trend. Meet customer demands by including PUDOs, Automated Parcel Machines (APMs), or Click & Collect options at the checkout stage.

2. Partner with multiple carriers

Another trend that is gathering pace in the e-commerce sector is partnering with multiple carriers. A multi-carrier strategy allows brands to offer more variety of delivery options to shoppers and can greatly enhance the customer experience. Focusing on local carriers in the different markets you operate in can help brands meet the expectations of an international customer base.

A multi-carrier strategy allows brands to offer more variety of delivery options to shoppers and can greatly enhance the customer experience.

3. Offer more sustainable options

Sustainability is a growing concern for e-commerce shoppers, with 68% stating that they expect to see more sustainable delivery options. However, although it is anticipated that the e-commerce sector will take action to become greener, it is important to remain transparent by tracking CO2 emissions associated with a delivery option. Customers will see straight-through greenwashing. That’s why some e-commerce platforms have partnered with bespoke tech firms to calculate the emissions at the checkout stage.

In 2023 Black Friday Cyber Monday sale, more customers opted for sustainable delivery options, according to Paazl Data Dashboards.

Approximately 7.2% of all shipments were sent to out-of-home (OOH) locations, such as lockers, pick-up and drop-off points (PUDOs), and stores. This represents a 96.6% increase when compared to Black Friday 2022.

4. Use data to make informed decisions

Shouting about your green credentials is one thing – but providing data to back them up is better still. Increasingly, e-commerce firms are using data to verify their carbon footprints and identify areas for improvement within their delivery strategies.

Data analytics can also tell brands about order processing time, inventory accuracy, and shipping ETAs. The importance of data has led Paazl to recently launch its Data Dashboards, a powerful tool that helps e-commerce brands gain valuable insights from their shipping data. Data provides insight, so delivery firms can turn it into impact.

Read more: Optimize your delivery strategy with shipping and delivery data

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5. Consider your reverse logistics strategy

Approximately 17% of online purchases were returned in 2022, representing a major administrative headache for e-commerce brands – not to mention a significant cost.

This has forced online retailers to pay closer attention to this aspect of their delivery strategy – and consumers and regulators are taking note too. For example, in the Netherlands, there is a growing expectation that online stores will ask consumers for compensation when returning their items.

Retailers including Zara, American Eagle, and many others already charge consumers for returns. If brands are going to go down this route, make sure it is clearly explained to consumers prior to checkout.

6. Use tools you can trust

Given the fast-moving nature of the e-commerce delivery space, it’s essential that brands employ digital tools that are robust, flexible, and up-to-date. These tools should encompass the broad spectrum of trends mentioned above – and be adaptable enough to incorporate the shifting market and consumer trends that will no doubt emerge in the future.

At Paazl, our all-in-one platform, REST APIs, and e-commerce extensions offer seamless integration with your existing e-commerce tools even as they remain flexible enough to meet a growing array of consumer demands.

Our solutions cover every key aspect of quality delivery, from webshop and warehouse to track & trace and returns. Plus, our data analytics module helps you better understand your customers’ preferences and your carriers’ performance.

Looking to implement a successful delivery strategy in 2024? Look no further than Paazl.