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In the News

In Search of Competitive Advantage - the Battle for Same-day Delivery

How quickly would you like your online or mobile purchases to be delivered? Tomorrow? In a few days? Or today?

The search for a competitive edge in the e-commerce market is increasingly turning to those businesses with a logistical advantage. Consumer expectations about delivery reliability and speed are inevitably increasing. However relatively few e-commerce operators are currently able to offer same-day delivery.

So the e-commerce giants like Amazon and Argos, which enjoy the twin benefits of phenomenal economies of scale and long-term experience of the market, sense an opportunity.

Where will consumers choose to shop as they make their choices for the crucial festive season? Might the offer of same-day delivery be the differentiating factor, perhaps over and above price?

So Christmas 2015 is the first holiday season where same-day delivery becomes a reality for most consumers in the UK.

Amazon has launched Amazon Prime Same Day (free for Prime members or £9.99 per order for the rest).

Argos has launched Amazon FastTrack (initially free but with the price rising to around £4 per order from early December).

As you can see from the Argos Christmas video below, speed of delivery is the point of differentiation that Argos want to promote above all else this Christmas.

It will be interesting to see whether same-day delivery becomes the norm in the UK. Will consumer expectations change so that offering it is less of a competitive advantage and more of a requirement to remain competitive?

What kind of premium for same-day delivery will consumers be prepared to pay when these initial promotional offers are withdrawn?

Another interesting angle will be whether other e-commerce operators are able to offer this kind of service in order to compete with Amazon and Argos. Will their delivery or logistics partners be able to support it?

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