Report: The Delivery Economy Continues to Grow Despite the Worst Economic Downturn Since the Great Depression

New research finds that in the face of economic uncertainty, buyers still expect companies to maintain fast delivery practices, increase sustainability and keep customer data secure.

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In the midst of economic uncertainty, global businesses are experiencing mounting pressure to maintain a superior delivery experience while also improving environmental sustainability and data privacy initiatives, according to a new report from project44.

The new report, “Is 2020 the End of the Delivery Economy?,” is based on a blind survey of 1,000 consumers and 600 supply chain professionals from the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and France.

Results find that despite a down economy, buying decisions are being driven by the delivery economy — the pervasive sentiment in which B2C and B2B customers expect low-cost, fast and highly transparent delivery of goods — as well as increased demand for sustainable practices and rising data security concerns.

Key findings from the report include:

Delivery expectations across industries remain high in the face of worldwide economic challenges.

·        83% of customers do not expect companies to give up fast delivery in an economic downturn.

·         89% of customers do not expect companies to sacrifice visibility/transparency into the delivery process or expected arrival times in an economic downturn.

·         Only 23% of supply chain professionals said they had a contingency plan already in place reduce the cost of supply chain operations due to an economic downturn.

Sustainability is increasingly important to customers, even in a struggling economy.

·         78% of customers said they would be more likely to make purchases from companies that prioritize sustainability in the delivery process.

·         60% of customer said they would pay more to shop from a company that practiced sustainable shipping practices even during an economic downturn.

·         Nearly half (46%) of supply chains don’t have an environmental sustainability plan.

Data security cannot be forgotten in the delivery economy.

·         80% of supply chain professionals say the delivery economy has increased the amount of data they manage and store on customers.

·         82% of customers feel companies need to do more to protect the security of their personal data.

“The delivery economy has become the new normal as customers across industries base buying decisions on convenient and sustainable delivery,” said Jett McCandless, Founder and CEO of project44. “These customer demands have become an inflection point for faster digitalization and transformation. As speed and visibility remain a priority, efficient supply chains will be at the center of business recovery and growth.”

“These findings echo what we see in the research community as well: smart data management enables effective supply chain management. But, as data sources and data integrations proliferate, we are all now only beginning to understand the opportunities, and the challenges, that real-world supply chain data coordination will present,” said David Correll, Research Scientist at the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics. “Ours is a field that is wide open, with big opportunities for profitable problem solving.”