We are looking into a, hopefully, good year and here we take a look at the freight trends that will characterize the year of 2021.
2021 has started, which means a new chance to make it all even better than last year. 2020 was a different year for everyone in many ways - some won, others lost. The consumer trend changed markedly and alternative solutions had to be found. Restructuring and new thinking must be said to be the key words for 2020 and, with the increased competition online, it is essential experience to carry forward into 2021.
Freight management and delivery have been particularly important in 2020, and therefore Shipmondo has analyzed the market for freight trends and tendencies in 2021. Here we present our take on what you can expect to see more of during the year.
Trend 1: Increase in home deliveries
There is no doubt that COVID-19 really caused a boom in webshops and online shopping in 2020. We saw an increase in home deliveries of 244% in home deliveries in the weeks after COVID-19 shit down the world - and, with the continuing pandemic in 2021, we predict that home deliveries will still be a large part of the delivery pattern.
This also applies, in particular, to food sales. In 2020, it became (even more) popular to order online for delivery right to your door. Several suppliers of special meal boxes report almost doubling on their sales in 2020 vs. the year before, due to particularly high demand from private customers. We have to continue to work at home, and the vaccines are still in the pipeline, so we can look forward to a year in which home delivery will be a continuing hit - regardless of product - because it is easy, convenient and safe. Even after the coronavirus, we see the possibility that home delivery will still be an attractive delivery method, because people have now developed a taste for it.
Trend 2: Pick up in store
New restrictions and closed shops means that people can no longer physically enter the premises to shop. So we see a new delivery trend: pick up in store. Many stores are still open to their employees and have therefore switched to direct sales through their Facebook and Instagram profiles, with the option of pick-up in store the same day. Digital solutions are in many ways a general trend in 2021, as these can overcome the limitations of the physical framework, and when there is no possibility for the customer to come down to the store, the store must come to the living room. It’s a trend that we may see more of in 2021 than in the previous year.
Read here about how you can jump on the bandwagon and let your customers pick up orders in your store.
Trend 3: Focus on a good customer experience
Many new players have entered the e-commerce field, and that means a lot of competition. So customers will have high expectations for an (extra) good customer experience in 2021, which is why you need to spend the year standing out.
You can do this, among other things, by having several different carriers associated with your webshop, where each carrier can offer your customers exactly the delivery form and time that suits them. Due to the significantly higher number of packages, carriers make a great effort to achieve an attractive delivery time. For example, PostNord has just introduced delivery of parcels on all seven days of the week.
When the carriers have driven off with your packages, you can let your customers know how far along the way the packages are. Tracking and personal messages are undeniable elements of a good customer experience, so keep a consistent focus on this - this year, too! Another trend that has been rising over the past few years is security for your customers when they are navigating around your webshop and when they have to enter their private information at checkout. Read more about how you can secure a trustworthy webshop.
Remember that the good customer experience is also about a good return experience. More online sales potentially equals returns. In 2020, we saw an increase in the number of return portals, which is an easy solution where the customer can print a return label and return receipt themselves. So 2021 may also be characterized by return shipments. Hence, if you haven’t already created a return portal, it’s a good idea to do so.
Trend 4: More sustainability
Sustainability, climate, environment; you’ve probably become more familiar with, and aware of, all of these over the years. Nevertheless, we predict that, this year, it will be one of the biggest trends.
Studies show how COVID-19 has had a positive effect on the environment, so there will probably be a greater focus on what you as a company can do to reduce, among other things, your CO2 emissions. We will see new packaging on consignments, and customers will be able to experience receiving their goods paperless, that is, without attached order receipts, return labels, etc.
For example, if you ship domestically in Sweden, you can use the carrier Early Bird, which focuses on the UN’s global sustainability goals.
Trend 5: International trade
We believe that we will see a slow reopening of the whole world in the coming year, which will also boost international trade. Some may be cautious about travelling under these circumstances, and others may not have the time for it. There may be many reasons for an increase in international trade, but we believe that it can get going again.
It will be exciting to see how the year goes, but we hope and believe that it will be a good one. If you want to be part of these possible upcoming trends, let Shipmondo be a part of the journey. You can send packages with several different carriers, choose different delivery methods, send in a more climate-friendly and environmentally aware way, ship to the rest of the world, and much more. Get started today!
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