Six tips for optimization in the Covid-19 pandemic – eCommerce Magazin


Since many shops in Germany were temporarily closed during the Corona crisis, German consumers ordered more online during this time: an average of 2.3 products more than usual. However, this is below the European average of almost three other products. The reason could be that in other countries the lockdown was even deeper and longer. How merchants can now increase the conversion rate.

Conversion rate: Customers are more patient with delivery times

The unpredictable increase in online purchases posed challenges in particular for logistics – all of Europe saw itself in the pandemic Delivery delays faced. Almost 71 percent of German consumers were affected. Parcels were delivered around two days later than usual on average. In the crisis, however, Germans are ready to wait longer. Previously an average of up to 4.5 days was justifiable for them, now it is an average of 5.7 days. In other European countries, however, people are far more patient. For example, the French previously expected a package to arrive after an average of 4.7 days. Now the delivery for them can take an average of 7.4 days.

Six tips for a higher conversion rate in e-commerce

One of the findings of the pandemic is certainly that e-commerce has continued to gain in importance for German consumers. However, this will not automatically lead to more conversions in the future – because specific measures are required for this. Which is suitable for German consumers, the Ecommerce Delivery Compass 2020 from Sendcloud as well. Rob van den Heuvel, CEO and co-founder of Sendcloud, has put together six tips from the results of the study that can increase the conversion rate in e-commerce.

Conversion rate
Before the Corona crisis, the maximum acceptable delivery time for German consumers was 4.5 days. (Graphic: Sendcloud)
Conversion rate Sendcloud
During the Corona crisis, the maximum acceptable delivery time for German consumers increased to 5.7 days. (Graphic: Sendcloud)

1. Customize shipping costs

In Germany, shipping costs are a deal breaker for 62 percent of Germans. At the same time, more than half of all consumers are willing to add an additional product to their purchase in order to reach the minimum order value for free shipping. Such a threshold can therefore help to increase your own sales. It is therefore important to deal with it experimentally and to check what works in the individual case. A helpful formula for calculating the minimum order value is: Average order quantity + (standard shipping cost x 3) = threshold for free shipping.

2. Offer multiple delivery options

To improve the customer experience and thus ensure more conversions, online retailers can offer several delivery options at checkout. In this regard, German consumers like to have a free choice. However, 35 percent generally reject further costs for additional options. Some, however, agree with additional costs for faster or exact-to-day shipping.

3. Don’t rely on just one logistics service provider

For 72 percent of German consumers, the respective mail order company of an online retailer has an influence on their own purchase decision. Negative previous experience can therefore lead to an order being canceled. This is why online retailers shouldn’t rely exclusively on a single mail order company, because the customer is ultimately king. In addition, integrating different shipping companies also has the advantage that you can simply switch to another company if delays occur. This ensures a smooth shipping process at all times.

4. Conversion rate: inform customers in detail

Transparency is crucial for conversions in e-commerce. German consumers want to be informed about their order. This means that all costs and delivery options should be listed on the product pages and in the checkout. Even after ordering, consumers expect regular updates on their order status. Track & Trace emails have an open rate of 90 to 100 percent. They are therefore ideally suited for marketing measures, can be customized in next to no time and offer the opportunity to establish long-term customer loyalty. Brand banners or special discounts that bind customers to their own store and generate follow-up business are ideal.

5. Note the return period for returns

31 percent of German consumers refrain from placing an order if the return period is shorter than 30 days, and a further 21 percent do not order if the deadline is shorter than 60 days. It is therefore important to set the deadline accordingly. Extending the return period can help increase sales. The fear that more products will be returned as a result of this step is unfounded. Research shows that after a while, consumers become attached to their order or often simply forget to return it.

6. Increase conversion rate with environmentally friendly shipping

Environmentally friendly shipping in Germany is currently not all that relevant. However, the Germans have already developed an awareness of this. Their willingness to pay more for environmentally friendly shipping is slightly higher in European comparison. This may result in a trend that promises better differentiation from the competition and a higher conversion rate in the future.

Founded in 2012 in the Netherlands Sendcloud is an all-in-one shipping platform for e-commerce companies looking to scale their business. Sendcloud aims to increase the competitiveness of online retailers by allowing retailers to use the shipping platform to optimize the entire shipping route from checkout to return. (sg)

Also read: Shipping costs: How online retailers can reduce abandoned purchases