Is waiting still the hardest part?

We ask cross-border consumers how their expectations have changed about delivery speed

In our recent BOXpoll cross-border survey, we found that consumers in nearly every country we surveyed were buying cross-border from US brands more frequently since the start of the pandemic, and that in several countries 1 (or more) in 5 consumers was making a cross-border purchase from the US at least once per month. 

While that’s great news for US online brands who’ve enabled cross-border on their sites, we wanted to find out what else they could be doing to improve conversions. The number one reason cross-border consumers say they abandon their shopping carts? High shipping costs. The number two reason? Slow delivery estimates at checkout. Can’t catch a break, amiright? 

Slow delivery

Over half of consumers in every country we surveyed tell us they’ve recently abandoned shopping carts because of slow delivery—and yet, even more say they’re sensitive to shipping costs (meaning they don’t see enough value in express or expedited delivery to pay a lot more). 

So, we decided to return to a question we asked at the end of last year—how fast is acceptably fast? By gauging this, retailers can better quote and price their shipping options to maximize conversions.

  • In general, consumers’ expectations regarding delivery speed haven’t changed much since last December
  • For Canadians, the definition of “fast” has expanded to a maximum of 3 days
  • For Chinese consumers, the definition of “acceptable” has grown to 9 days
  • But for UK consumers, “fast” is now a bit faster at 4 days

But the devil’s in the details

We put together a couple of interactive charts to give you a better idea of how consumers think about delivery speed. 

  • The first creates a ‘racetrack’ to show what percentage of consumers in each country think a given delivery timeline is “fast.” 
  • The second allows you to delve deeper on a country-by country view; pay special attention to the “acceptable” slice of this chart—that’s where you’ll convert consumers at the best possible shipping cost/pricing.

BOXpoll™ by Pitney Bowes, a weekly consumer survey on current events, culture,and ecommerce logistics. Conducted by Pitney Bowes with Morning Consult //2094 US consumers surveyed September-October 2021.© Copyright Pitney Bowes Inc.

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