Shoppers are turning to ecommerce more than ever, and retailers need to strengthen their last mile operations to keep up with growing demand. Even shoppers that used online channels for less than 25% of their purchases prior to the pandemic are embracing the convenience of delivery, ultimately increasing their number of online purchases by 343%, according to a survey by Accenture.
“Ecommerce is not slowing down,” said Sean Whitehouse, Managing Director of Strategy & Consulting, Supply Chain & Operations, Retail Lead at Accenture in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “We’ve talked about this for a while now and it was accelerated by COVID. As we get back to more traditional work settings, where that order is delivered may change from home to work and other places, it might become more flexible as we start traveling and moving, but they’re still going to want delivery.”
Retailers will feel the most pressure of increased ecommerce volumes during the holiday season, when orders will likely exceed capacity and maintaining accurate delivery windows will become even more essential. That is why now is the time for retailers to strategize and adapt their last mile experiences for the short- and long-term future of ecommerce.