Royal Mail delivers tracked returns for Australian online shoppers

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New research by Royal Mail has revealed that 30% of Australian online shoppers make purchases from UK sites, spending an average of A$70 (US$50/£39) a month.

The key reasons that Australian shoppers cited for shopping on UK sites were availability, a love of UK brands and price. The research revealed that 76% of Australian shoppers will buy products from the UK if they can’t find them locally; 46% seek out items that are only on sale in the UK; and 59% do so because they love British brands.

More than eight in 10 (81%) Australian shoppers use digital marketplaces, compared with 68% in the UK, with eBay the leading destination, followed by Gumtree and Amazon. Online shoppers in Australia are looking for inspiration as well as value for money but the delivery experience is also of crucial importance. Three quarters (75%) consider delivery ratings influential when shopping on digital marketplaces, compared with 58% in the UK.

The report showed that 12% of Australian online shoppers have returned an item purchased from a UK site and 73% said they would track every item they order if the service was available. Almost three quarters (74%) said they would be unlikely to shop with a retailer following a difficult return experience, compared with the international average of 66%. Three quarters of Australian online shoppers consider it important to be able to track a return to a retailer.

In light of this research, Royal Mail International has developed a new tracked returns service in Australia to give customers confidence and provide peace of mind, alongside giving retailers greater visibility of their stock.

Royal Mail will set retailers up on a secure returns portal, which the retailer then brands and directs its customers to via a web link. Customers can access the returns site and once they have entered their details, they receive a confirmation email.

The email contains a link to download the returns label with instructions on how to post the return item. The returns package is then delivered using a tracked service provided by Australia Post to an in-country hub for transportation back to the UK. When returned items arrive in the UK, they are delivered to the designated ‘returns’ address via Royal Mail’s tracked domestic network.

A spokesperson for Royal Mail said, “Australia is an attractive market for exporters. The country has high internet penetration, widespread use of English as a main language and a high potential for international e-commerce sales.

“For UK businesses wanting to grow internationally, it’s important to understand the distinct shopping habits of consumers in different countries. At Royal Mail, we have experience delivering into 230 countries and territories worldwide.

“Retailers that tune into the different ways in which consumers shop across the globe are likely to be more successful on an international scale.”

To download the report, click here.

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With over a decade of experience as a business and technology journalist working in B2B publishing, Hazel first joined UKi in 2011. After taking 18 months off to bring up her daughter and try her hand at marketing copywriting, she returned in January 2018 to do what she loves best – magazine editing! She is now the editor of UKi's Passenger Terminal World and Parcel and Postal Technology International magazines.

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