Millennials are becoming a driving force behind changes to how retailers deliver goods, according to research by e-commerce platform Sendcloud.
The study showed that four out of five millennials (aged 25-40) in the UK consider flexibility as a key element of delivery compared with just half (53%) of boomers (aged 57-65).
This trend is expected to continue in the future, with the study showing that millennials spend an average of £139 (US$190) per order online and boomers paying around £61 (US$84).
When it comes to convenience, 63% of millennials want to be able to change the delivery time of a parcel even if it’s already on its way, with over half (58%) also wanting to change the delivery address while en route.
These preferences drop significantly in the boomer generation, with just 27% wanting to change the delivery time and only a quarter (25%) believing that changing the address is necessary.
Rob van den Heuvel, CEO and co-founder at Sendcloud, said, “This research provides valuable insights into the differences between generations, and it’s especially interesting to see that millennials are setting the standard for online orders and flexible delivery services.
“The challenge now for shipping and logistics providers is to meet the demand from consumers and provide more choice on where, when and how they receive online orders.”
Millennial shoppers were found to be significantly more likely to choose premium shipping options at a time that is convenient for them. Three quarters (76%) of boomers simply choose the most standard delivery option; just half (53%) of millennials do the same.
Next-day (52%) and same-day (31%) deliveries were far more popular with millennials than boomers, for whom next-day (36%) and same-day (14%) are considered less of a priority. Other premium options such as weekend delivery, CO2 neutral delivery and delivery in a parcel locker are also significantly more popular among millennials, even with a higher price tag. Millennials are willing to splash up to £5.10 on shipping costs for an order of just £15. Boomers, meanwhile, are only willing to spend £3.60 on average for the same priced item.
Van den Heuvel concludes, “Meeting the demands of the millennial generation will become increasingly important as their buying power continues to grow in the coming years. For online retailers to maximize their potential and profits, it’s crucial that they embrace flexible delivery as a minimum requirement.”