What Takealot’s next-day delivery badge really means

Consumers shopping on Takealot should be aware that the products it lists with the “Next Day” delivery label won’t necessarily be delivered on the next day.

The issue was highlighted in a recent Advertising Regulatory Board (ARB) ruling dismissing a complaint by Mr Tumelo Moloto, who accused Takealot of misleading him with the “Next Day delivery” offer.

Moloto placed an order for a radio-controlled stunt car toy at 19:26 on 31 August 2023 after seeing it had the badge next to it and assuming it would be delivered the following day.

After the toy failed to arrive on 1 September 2023, he called Takealot and was told it would only be delivered on 2 September.

Takealot is not a member of the ARB, so the regulatory body only considered the matter for the guidance of its members.

In its response to the ARB, Takealot stressed that it did not submit to the jurisdiction of the ARB and was not bound by its decisions.

Nevertheless, it explained that the “Next Day” delivery badge merely indicated that a particular product was eligible for delivery the next day.

However, this remains subject to certain criteria, such as the customer’s geographical location and stock availability in the relevant distribution area.

Shoppers will find the terms and conditions of next-day delivery in Takealot’s Help Centre.

It is also available when clicking the “i” button next to the “Eligible for next-day delivery or collection” disclaimer on the product page.

In this description, Takealot explicitly states that the “Next Day” badge does not guarantee next-day delivery.

Instead, a customer will only see the next business day delivery option during checkout if all products in their cart meet the following criteria:

  • For Cape Town metro customers, all products must be in stock at the Cape Town distribution centre.
  • For Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Durban customers, all products must be in stock at the Johannesburg distribution centre.
  • For all other areas, all products must be in stock at the nearest distribution centre.

Takealot also excludes products with a length and width longer than 1.4 metres and volumetric weight of 35kg or above from the offer.

In addition, courier capacity at the time of the order will be another factor.

Takealot pointed out that an order that did not meet the criteria above would not be offered the “next business day” delivery option upon checkout.

Instead, the customer would only be able to select “standard delivery” with an estimated arrival date.

The ARB said the affected customer did not mention this in his complaint, and it was unclear whether he noticed this distinction at the time.

The screenshots below show the “Next Day” delivery badge on the left and the “next business day” delivery option for the same product during checkout.

The ARB said including an “i” icon next to the badge instead of in a list under the product page would make the advertising a “great deal clearer” and immediately alert consumers about the limitations of the offer.

“However, it does appear prominently on the offer page, and any consumer with a particular concern about the offer would easily be able to access this information,” the ARB said.

In addition, it said the late order delivery time was outside what is regarded as ordinary business hours.

The ARB was of the view that a person placing an order this close to the next day, hoping for delivery the next day, would scrutinise the terms of the order and delivery more closely than someone who does not require urgent delivery.

“Under these circumstances, the directorate believes that a reasonable person would pay attention to the details highlighted by the advertiser, such as the fact that during checkout, the next-day delivery option is not available,” the ARB said.

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What Takealot’s next-day delivery badge really means