The developments come two months after Amazon increased the minimum amount customers must spend to qualify for free home delivery from £10 to £20.
The household names claim the current model of free delivery or collection is ‘unsustainable’ given the cost of the technology behind web stores, the associated warehouses and delivery vans.
The costs are particularly high for supermarkets, which must pay staff to pick different items for each customer and run the necessary fleet of vehicles and drivers. Currently, most shoppers pay around £1-£6 for this service.
But Dr Clive Black, head of research at Shore Capital Stockbrokers, believes the delivery charge for supermarket shopping would need to rise to as much as £15 a time to reflect the true costs involved. He said: ‘It was inevitable that charges for online shopping would have to rise. There is an army of vans out there delivering now and they have pared their costs to the bone and can’t go any further.’
Retailers are keen for shoppers to sign up for annual subscriptions, which include free delivery, rather than paying purchase by purchase. Tesco offers free deliveries under the ‘Delivery Saver’ subscription service that costs £30-£60 a year – but members will soon need to increase their minimum spend to £40 to avoid the £4 surcharge.
The household names claim the current model of free delivery or collection is ‘unsustainable’ given the cost of the technology behind web stores
Customer Paul Fitzgerald wrote on Tesco’s Facebook page that he had subscribed to its Delivery Saver scheme six months ago only to find the minimum spend for free deliveries is rising from £25 to £40.
He wrote: ‘I usually spend £30ish a week on food. I bought the year of Delivery Saver specifically due to the minimum amount. This is unacceptable.’
On the same page, Sue Simmonds said that raising the minimum order value to £40 would hit pensioners and single people and added: ‘I hope you lose thousands of customers over this!!’
Claire Kendall wrote: ‘I’m livid about this. I live alone and can’t afford to spend £40 a week. Goodbye Tesco, I’m off to Morrisons.’
At John Lewis, managing director Andy Street defended the £2 for ‘click and collect’ purchases under £30, saying: ‘There is a huge logistical operation behind this system and quite frankly it’s unsustainable.’
But one customer wrote: ‘That’s almost like charging people at the door to come in and shop.’ Another claimed: ‘It’s just sheer greed on John Lewis’s part.’
[“source – dailymail.co.uk’]