Report reveals COVID-19 impact on delivery and returns

Many retailers around the world introduce contactless delivery that keeps their online operations open

delivery and returns

Report reveals COVID-19 impact on delivery and returns. Source: shutterstock.com

According to GlobalData, the retailers have adapted their delivery and return propositions to ensure customer and staff safety during the pandemic. This way, these changes will transform consumer expectations of online delivery and returns, the report says.

The data highlighted, China largely introduced its contactless delivery, setting the bar high for retailers and foodservice providers worldwide.

For instance, Alibaba and JD.com introduced contactless delivery of food and grocery. Besides, foodservice providers such as Meituan employing this method for takeaways, informing customers of both the chef and delivery driver’s temperature.

The impacts of COVID-19 have the potential to decrease the popularity of click & collect beyond the outbreak as more people are expected to work from home in the long term, so they will be able to accept home deliveries. Additionally, when stores re-open many consumers will be reluctant to visit busy locations due to lingering concerns around their health. Consumers may switch to third-party pickup options instead, especially lockers as this fulfillment method has no contact with others, as long as shoppers are reassured about the cleanliness of the facilities
Emily Salter, Retail Analyst at GlobalData

Although, when it comes to returns, many consumers are unable to return items if they are self-isolating, or if the shop they return items to has closed.

In response to this, retailers extend the returns periods to either a set number of days or a specified number of days after stores re-open.

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