Study: One-in-four e-commerce purchases have inadequate shipping

New York - Nearly a quarter of packages purchased online and tested during a six-month period did not meet the basics for adequate shipping. In a study spanning six months of data, conducted from October 2013 to March 2014, StellaService Analysts placed 2,855 orders with 125 leading online retailers to measure the quality of the shipping and returns experience.

Retailers fell short in package fit (10%) and damaged packages (10%), which were the main causes of missed opportunities. These orders were then returned to the retailers. The total number of returns evaluated was 2,720. Of note, if a refund was not issued within 28 days, those orders were excluded from the study. If the retailer didn’t accept a return, (in some cases the retailer said to keep the item) those orders were also excluded.

Nearly one-in-three retailers in the study did not meet the basic criteria for any of the returns initiated by StellaService analysts. Still, several retailers, including Mr. Porter, Ralph Lauren and Brooks Brothers, scored high marks, particularly in delivering orders in consistently high-quality packaging.

“Leading retailers know that delivery and returns are key areas where they must differentiate themselves in order to win customers, and we are starting to see retailers make investments in those areas,” said Kevon Hills, StellaService VP of research.

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