The rise of deliveries in the UK

As a nation, the UK loves shopping. In lockdown, the number of deliveries soared, with 32 per cent of total retail sales in May being from Internet order. This is a significant jump from 18.9 per cent in February.

But, other than the Covid-19 pandemic, why has there been such a rise in online shopping? VW Amarok retailers, Lookers, shed light on the ways that deliveries are playing their part among differing sectors…

Food & Drink

According to research, the UK’s food and grocery market is set to grow considerably by 2023, with a 14.8% increase anticipated. It’s expected that online is going to remain as the fastest growing channel and with supermarkets currently worth £89.1 billion, they’re predicted to grow 7.7% in the next four years, while discount stores, such as Aldi and Lidl, are expected to have an increase in value by 36.7%.

Furthermore, by 2023, online sales are set to increase by 52% as larger supermarkets increase their use of web analytics to allow for a better online experience for a shopper. While click and collect services are one way growth will be aided, there is a great emphasis on delivery time and cost. Nowadays, it’s possible to choose your time slot so that you can collect your goods at a time that suits you.

Simon Wainwright, Director of Insight at IGD, said: “Growth is increasingly being driven by recent entrants to the channel and more delivery options. But we’re seeing more ambition from the Big Four as well, making ordering easier, improving picking, new capacity and faster deliveries. Analytics are also being utilised more effectively to target customers with more personalised content. Rising customer service expectations are encouraging the development of more rapid delivery services and other technological responses such as unattended delivery solutions.”


In 2012, it was noted that people were willing to wait 5.5 days for an outfit to be delivered, if it was done so for free. Fast forward to 2019 and the expectancy had dropped by a day, meaning those who don’t offer a quick free delivery service may find themselves falling behind their competitors.  The saturated market is even making next-day delivery the ‘new norm’.

With online shopping continuing to grow within the fashion sector, it is projected that the online market will be worth nearly £29 billion by 2022. This means that there’ll be much more need for deliveries. Three quarters of online fashion shoppers stated an interest in delivery options.

Tamara Sender, Senior Fashion Analyst at Mintel, said: “As consumers have become more accustomed to shopping for fashion online, their expectations have been raised and retailers will have to invest more in the online shopping experience to drive sales. Delivery is becoming a key online battleground and the use of delivery passes and more dynamic delivery options could increase loyalty towards a specific retailer.”

Films & TV shows

Delivery services have led to the entertainment sector booming. While you can stream your favourite films & TV shows on the likes of Netflix, many people still like to have a hard copy of their favourite big screen showing. Therefore, the likes of Amazon, who offer same-day delivery, are giving the public a service they desire. And it’s not just the speedy service on offer that is impressive. Amazon announced that if you have a certain car in some locations, they’ll even deliver your parcel to the boot of your own vehicle. This in-car delivery service allows consumers to relax and not worry about missing a parcel — something that affects two thirds of online shoppers.

It’s clear that online shopping across sectors is creating a higher demand for delivery drivers, too. Therefore, the rise in deliveries isn’t just affecting industries, but also jobs. With demand there must be supply, leading to opportunities for a career change too. Could a career in deliveries be for you?



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