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Half of UK consumers would abandon cart due to expensive delivery costs, study finds


The majority of UK online shoppers have named expensive delivery costs as their biggest pain point, with half admitting that expensive delivery costs would be the leading cause for them abandoning their shopping cart ahead of payment – a new survey has revealed.

The study A Nightmare on E-Street, published by no-code commerce automation platform Primer, aimed to explore the pain points and emerging trends in ecommerce, from both sides of the checkout.

It also highlighted that ‘shipping and returns’ was the number one pain point (33%) for British retailers.

Primer added it found the fact that shipping and returns did not come out as the lead area that online retailers are looking to invest in as we move into 2024 and beyond was shocking. In fact, ‘streamlining fulfilment and shipping’ (25%), came fifth down the list on importance when asked which area of their business they thought held the best opportunities for future growth, behind expanding their product offering (27%), and increasing their social media presence (26%).

Considering that UK retailers believe over a third (37%) of all shopping carts are abandoned before payment is completed by a customer, with the average online shopping carts valued at £213.84, not acting on consumer demands for affordable delivery (and speedy checkout) could dramatically damage their bottom line.

Primer asked: “In the age of Amazon Prime, is it time for a new delivery model?” Whether that’s through subscriptions, such as Asos, Deliveroo or Uber eats, or factoring delivery costs into the overall price to ensure ‘free’ delivery can be offered, 2023 should be the year that online retailers prioritise nailing their delivery offering.

For ‘time poor’ consumers, it’s not only expensive delivery costs that can put them off their purchase – speed and simplicity are also a must for all retailers’ checkout processes. Of the three quarters (76%) of consumers who admit they’d abandon their shopping basket if the process took too long, 41% would do so after just four minutes, with 15% only giving a retailer up to two minutes before they gave up.

“It’s never been more important to nail your checkout process and ensure there are no barriers to purchase. Whilst UK retailers may be aware of the importance of maintaining their payment process, with 100% of retailers making improvements over the course of the past year to keep up with new technologies and consumer payment trends, they need to ensure that the changes they’re making reflect the demands of consumers. Seamless checkout processes and affordable delivery are what consumers want, therefore, where retailers need to be focusing their efforts,” said Gabriel Le Roux, co-founder of Primer.

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