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British consumers spending more than £2 billion a year on delivery subscriptions


A new survey from Whistl has shown that British consumers are spending around £2bn a year delivery subscription services – ranging from discounted delivery services such as Amazon Prime to subscription box services such as snack business Graze or beauty retailer Glossybox.
The average spend is around £60 a year but around 1.5 million men spend more than £300 a year on subscriptions, according to the research which surveyed 1,000 consumers in the UK.

It comes a week after similar research from Hitwise showed that interest in the subscription box market was up nearly a third in 2017.

The Whistl survey showed that Amazon Prime was the most popular subscription service, with 61.4% of those who took part in the survey signed up. Other popular services included Graze (12.3%), nextunlimited (9.7%), ASOS Premier (8.8%), Pact Coffee (8.5%) and Glossybox (7.8%).

Most consumers benefited financially from signing up to with Amazon Prime saving them up to £165 per year (on average) across the multiple platforms and offers they provide. However one in five admitted to not making use of the benefit of such services.

Consumers signed up for a number of reasons. Value for money was the biggest driver at 60% followed by convenience at 45%.

But the study also showed it’s something consumers increasingly expect with one in five of those surveyed refusing to show with retailers who don’t offer such services. It also increased selling opportunities for retailers with almost half (48.9%) admitting to buying items they wouldn’t have if they hadn’t had the subscription service.

Carl Thompson of Hawkins & Shepherd, a British handcrafted shirt retailer who offers a monthly subscription service of a new shirt per month, said that his company had seen steady growth since launching his subscription service in 2016.

“Of our subscription customers around 37% have made additional purchases on the website outside of the subscription,” he said. “Subscription services are becoming more and more part of the busy male lifestyle, so we wanted to offer our customers convenience. But more than this, some of our subscription options allow customers to split payments over months, making our handmade shirts more affordable.”

Melanie Darvall, director of marketing and communications at Whistl, said companies have to ensure they get their offering right. “It seems the key to making your subscription service a success is finding the balance and making your offering beneficial for both parties. Ensuring the quality of product or value of discount is high enough to make your customer base loyal and consider spending money outside of what is essentially a monthly “taster” service can certainly be a challenge, but once you’ve cracked that side of things, you’ll reap the rewards and hopefully retain a happy customer base,” she said.

Full findings of the survey are available here:

Image credit: Fotolia

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