Consumers' Expectation of Fast, Free Shipping Puts Pressure on Retailers

By Sheridan Fifer

Thanks in large part to the ubiquity of Amazon, consumers now expect fast and free shipping, and the cost of fulfilling that expectation is rising. Shipping companies are introducing surcharges along with annual increases; for example, FedEx has announced peak surcharges on certain shipments from customers who have a weekly volume of more than 30,000 packages. To cope with the rising expense and complexity of online order fulfillment, retailers are turning to alternative delivery methods, including curbside pickup, buy online, pick up in store, and third-party delivery companies. 

Consumers expect fast and free shipping, but that is an increasing burden for many retailers, especially those that were hurt by extended shutdowns during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Read the full story at CNBC.