Despite the hype surrounding the retail industry's need to focus investment on new shopping channels such as mobile and social media, a new survey suggests stress-free, on-time delivery is more important to consumers. 

A survey by GT Nexus in association with YouGov revealed 70% of consumers in the US, UK, Germany and France expect delivery of goods bought online within four days. But just 3% have purchased goods using social media.

Most shoppers, the report showed, are more concerned with how well retailers are able to deliver the products. Indeed, 75% of consumers cite the inclusion of delivery/collection options as being important to them when ordering a product either online or in-store.

Looking deeper, consumers have hign expectations on delivery times. European consumers surveyed appeared less tolerant, with an average of 65% expecting delivery of purchases made online within three days or less - whereas in the US only 24% of consumers expect delivery in that time frame.

"These results show that retailers are potentially focusing their investments on the wrong thing," said Greg Johnsen, chief marketing officer at GT Nexus.

"Obviously, having a good front-end multi-channel strategy in place is important, but what some may be missing is that it's the back-end of the multi-channel strategy that will ultimately influence consumers' propensity to order from a particular retailer.

"It is completely pointless to have fancy user interfaces across all channels if you cannot deliver when and where a consumer wants to receive your goods."