Ecommerce Round-up

In this article, we look at the status of the online retail industry as we enter the last quarter of 2022.

Amazon faces £900m lawsuit for ‘pushing customers to pay more’

Amazon is being sued for £900m for pushing “offers” that profit the internet retailer but are bad for customers. The Competition Appeal Tribunal case targets the company’s “Buy Box” function, which artificially recommends specific things in response to user searches. Amazon gets more fees but hides lower offers or better delivery alternatives from customers, violating its competition standards as a “dominant marketplace,” according to the claim.

UK parcel theft peaks

The first worldwide parcel theft survey says UK doorstep parcel theft is rising. Between May 2021 and April 2022, over eight million shipments were lost or stolen, with the UK seeing the biggest rise. The UK lost £320 million in products due to a 5% increase in the previous year.

The world’s first global parcel theft survey indicated that close to one in ten consumers worldwide had at least one parcel lost or stolen from May 2021 to April 2022- costing an estimated £33.6 billion.

Penn Elcom offers a solution to restore online buying confidence with the Penn Parcel Box, a secure, weatherproof parcel delivery option constructed from British steel.  The Penn Parcel Box was developed in response to enquiries from customers who had problems with parcels going missing.

Online retail figures remain positive, despite the wider industry decline.

Despite the contraction in retail as a whole, online retail has held up. Online retail sales reached 26.4%. despite the wider sector seeing a drop in sales, compounded by inflation and the extra bank holiday after Queen Elizabeth II’s death.

Kevin Bright of McKinsey & Company suggests that consumers are more concerned about the economy now than during pandemic lockdowns. Bright remarked, “Consumers are responding carefully, as they are gloomier about the economic prospects now than during the COVID-19 lockdowns in March 2020”.  

Buy now, pay later (BNPL) is growing, with 19% of consumers planning to use more services in the coming months, compared to April’s 15%.

Thousands of tonnes of carbon emissions reduced by retailers

According to Kerry McCarthy MP, Shadow Minister for Climate Change, British firms can lead the world in decarbonisation. Six retailers were honoured at the BRC’s Climate Action Roadmap Showcase in October 2022, for their efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

The winning entries were picked for their ambition and impact. Currys “Long Live Your Tech” campaign saved 1.7 million products from waste. Tesco and OLIO have redistributed 4,500 tonnes of unsold food. Asda‘s new biogas vehicles have reduced CO2e by 50,000 tonnes.

Other winning entries were Radley, who took a fresh look at their entire operations in order to reduce waste. Morrisons, who worked with their farmers to find ways of lowering emissions in food production, and Screwfix, who almost halved the carbon intensity of hundreds of stores through installing heat pumps, insulation and LED lighting.