German Consumers Expect Transparent Communication After Placing Online Orders

6 min.

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An exclusive study commissioned by Actindo finds that German consumers prioritize clear, effective communication for their online orders - especially in the run-up to Christmas. 

The research, conducted by YouGov* earlier this month, examined what matters most to consumers in the post-purchase experience. Other options included 24hr delivery and picking a date/time of delivery. 

YouGov also found that German consumer expectations for AI customer service chatbots are rising fast, in line with their rapid adoption by the e-commerce industry. 

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Proactive Communication and Alternative Delivery Options 

When asked, “How important are the following options when shopping online before Christmas?”, German consumers rated three options from “not important” to “extremely important”: 

  • Choosing the delivery date and time 
  • Delivery within 24 hours 
  • Regular updates on delivery status via email and SMS

Perhaps surprisingly, there was no clear trend regarding 24hr delivery and self-selection of delivery date and time. However, over two-thirds (67%) of respondents felt that regular delivery updates were “important”, “very important” or “extremely important”.

YouGov x Actindo post-purchase experiences slide8

A follow-up question found that proactive communication in the event of delivery problems is essential for online purchases: fully 85% of respondents described it as “important”, “very important” or “extremely important”. 

The overwhelming majority (80%) of consumers also want alternative delivery options in the event of problems. 

“This research shows the importance of communication and the experience after the buy button,” says Sven März, VP Sales at Actindo. “Consumers clearly indicate that they want to be on top of their delivery, especially before Christmas." 

How AI Chatbots Can Help Meet Consumer Expectations

On a related note, the same YouGov study found that AI chatbots are rapidly being accepted to fulfil customer service tasks in Germany. However, user expectations are also rising. 

Over two-thirds (70%) of respondents felt that an AI chatbot used for customer service should be able to understand most requests entered in plain text – hardly surprising in the year 2023, when tools like ChatGPT have entered the mainstream, powered by Large Language Models (LLMs).

And a clear majority (70%) of respondents felt that an AI chatbot should be able to access the current status of a parcel and its estimated delivery date or time. 

Finally, almost exactly two-thirds (65%) of respondents felt that an AI chatbot should be able to trigger appropriate customer service actions as required, such as requesting a return. 

Solve Any Post-Purchase Challenge with Actindo Core1

The findings underline the need for online retailers to optimize the post-purchase experience, and prioritize fast, accurate communication concerning deliveries. 

Actindo’s Core1 platform can solve post-purchase challenges in all channels, by providing a central overview of all orders and integrating smoothly into any existing e-commerce stack.

Powerful features like distributed order management, integrated datahub and omnichannel orchestration enable renowned brands, retailers and manufacturers to fix data errors and improve customer satisfaction. 

“At Actindo, our mission is to enable sophisticated transactional business models across retail, e-commerce and desktop,” says Boris Krstic, CEO and Co-Founder. “We provide the single point of truth for composable commerce and the enable the governance of customer-centric experiences in the unified commerce era.”

Boris Krstic, CEO and Co-Founder, Actindo

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*Unless otherwise stated, all data provided by YouGov Deutschland GmbH. 2,033 respondents participated in the survey, which took place between the 05.12. and the 07.12.2023. The results were weighted and are representative for the German population (age 18+). 

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