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BizReport : Research archives : October 25, 2007

Shipping promotions most popular with online retailers

Free shipping, with conditions, is set to be the most popular promotion among online retailers this holiday season, found a study conducted by BizRate Research for

by Helen Leggatt

The study found that 78 percent of online retailers plan to offer free shipping, with conditions, this holiday period. Conditions range from number of purchases made to the total purchase value.

Other shipping promotions include discounted shipping, just over half of online retailers propose to implement this style, and free shipping without conditions, which just 41 percent of online retailers will offer.

"Free shipping offers drive online sales more than any other promotion, which is why they remain popular with retailers," said Scott Silverman, Executive Director of

"Unfortunately, free shipping is not free for retailers. Merchants can minimize the financial impact of these promotions by carefully analyzing the conditions required for their customers to receive free shipping," he added.

Many consumers purchase online for the convenience and range of products available, and most see the delivery charges as a fair trade off to waiting in traffic jams, finding a parking space and jostling through the malls.

"What really drives me is that I do not have to go to the mall where there is traffic to sit and no place to park. If I do not need it right away, why burn the gas?" said Carter F. Randolph, chairman of Planet Products of Blue Ash, in an interview with The Enquirer (Cincinnati).

Tags: delivery charges, free delivery, holiday, online shopping, promotion

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