Six tips for international delivery – Direct Commerce magazine – covering every channel from every angle –By
This short report on the2012 International Retail Delivery Report undertaken by Micros Ecommerce and sponsored by Royal Mail reminds us that the address industry has a lot to do. Of the six tips, one was “Support accurate address capture”. The report says “only a tiny number of sites support international address look-up”. One site waits until you’ve filled in the entire form to ask you to choose your country. Then, it empties the form and provides your country’s address format, and forces you to start over. Oh, boy. But, I bet they’ve got a fair number of abandoned shopping carts right there.
At least providing the right format is a start to better capture. That would reduce errors by quite a lot. (And, damn it, stop asking the Yanks for their “county”). And step 2 after a bit would be to provide the address look-up capability.
The report says there is a whinge that “international address look-up is an expensive service to offer and maintain.” Well, it’s also expensive to lose customers because you can’t get it there. It’s expensive when you lose the parcel. It’s expensive when it takes so long the customer demands you take it back, at your expense. (You’re going to have to offer free returns, by the way. That’s where the market is going.) And it’s an expensive service for a qualified company, like a member of GADA, to offer because it costs a lot to provide it.