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Shoppers are spending less – and ask for better service when they do buy

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Shoppers are now spending less online and being more choosy when they do spend, a new study suggests. A substantial minority of respondents say they will no longer accept Covid-19 as a reason for poor delivery or customer service experiences. 

Sorted questioned 2,000 respondents in the UK and the US and found that 82% said they were now more money conscious because of inflation, while 63% said they spent less online and in shops than they did a year ago. 

When asked why they spent less, more than half (56%) of UK respondents named Brexit and the rising cost of goods. The availability of discounts both in-store and online (24%) and a lack of consumer confidence (16%) were also key reasons. 

However, more than a third of respondents said they were likely to spend more than usual at this July’s Amazon Prime Day, and 32% said they also shopped during other flash sales. 

Moving on from Covid-19 service levels

Two-thirds (66%) said they had noticed an increase in customer service problems at the point of purchase and/or at delivery since the pandemic began. Now, 43% say Covid-19 is no longer a good enough excuse for poor delivery or customer service, and 63% say poor delivery service would stop them returning to a company to buy. 

Asked what they most appreciated about deliveries, 37% named low shipping costs, and 32% on-time delivery, as well as updates about orders and returns (23%). 

Carmen Carey, chief executive of Sorted, says: “Inflation across the UK and the US is the highest it has been in decades, and consumers are having to rethink their spending habits as a result. With money tight, brands are going to be competing more than ever for share of mind and wallet. With customer loyalty at its most fragile, there is absolutely no room for error when offering delivery experiences.”

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