How to Respond to Customers After a Late Delivery5 min read

Nearly half of consumers (45%) say they are unlikely to continue ordering from a company even after just one instance of late delivery.

On-time deliveries, though, aren’t always within a business’s control. 

And avoiding customer concerns and complaints when they question you about a late delivery only makes matters worse.

Therefore, here are 3 tips for how you can respond to customers after a late delivery and focus on doing long-term business with them even after a poor delivery experience. 

1. Be Honest About Your Capabilities

Don’t put your company in a situation where late deliveries are common because you’re stretching your shipping resources too thin.

Provide customers with realistic shipping times, even if that means your competitors can deliver quicker. 

Quick shipping is an attractive benefit to consumers, but knowing when to expect their deliveries is far more important.

Be honest with your customers about how quickly you can deliver an item. You risk damaging your relationship with them if you can’t fulfill your deliveries on time.

You risk damaging your relationship with your customers if you can’t fulfill your deliveries on time.

2. Be Transparent About Delays

If you find out about a late delivery beforehand (whether it’s due to weather, product shortage, or other unforeseen events), contact your customer immediately.

Customers are more forgiving when you’re transparent about the reasons for the delay and the adjusted shipping dates. 

For example, Boxycharm women’s subscription box sends out its products in the early part of each month. Its subscribers look forward to receiving their boxes and complain loudly on social media when boxes don’t arrive on time.

When Boxycharm learned there would be a 2-week shipping delay due to product shortages, it notified customers of the delay immediately and told them exactly when to expect their shipments.

Boxycharm proactively informing customers

While nobody’s happy about receiving a late delivery, consumers do understand that weather emergencies and product shortages can cause delays. 

When you let them know about a late delivery in advance, they’re less disappointed and more likely to forgive the problem.

3. Be Generous With Your Time and Compensation

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