Speed is in the eye of the beholder
In an earlier edition of BOXpoll, we asked US consumers about how their definitions of “fast” and “slow” delivery had changed since the start of the pandemic (spoiler: expectations are now lower). But domestic shipping expectations aren’t as impacted by how far consumers believe a package must travel—particularly compared to cross-border transactions.
As part of our cross-border series, we recently asked this same question about the perception of delivery speed from the US to consumers in 6 different markets. We found that distance plays a significant role—but so does culture.
- Driven by standards set by JD.com and Alibaba, Chinese consumers have an above average standard of “fast” delivery, even for cross border transactions. For example, in 2020, JD.com delivered 90% of orders via their network within 1 day. That’s brisk, baby.
- In fact, Chinese consumers’ expectations are closer to Canadian consumers, who consider 0-2 days to be fast delivery from the US. Surprising, considering China is about 15 times farther from the US than Canada. Check out our Cross-Border Market Value Model to learn more about the opportunity and complexity to serve each of these markets.
- European consumers, who have like-minded expectations about delivery speed from the US, are more lenient given shorter shipping times within Europe.
- Australian consumers, living furthest away among markets we surveyed, have lowered expectations—but not by much, with the definition of “fast” maxing out at 6 days.
- But “fast” isn’t always the most important factor; cross-border consumers on average find an additional 2 days of transit time to be acceptable. Check out the full breakdown on perceptions of speed below.