Automation has changed the way e-commerce functions. The revolution has led to the Indian market hopping onto the digital bandwagon. Being in the field of technology, the term, ‘change is constant’ has been a practice seen with every passing year. However, this last year has seen massive changes in the Indian e-commerce industry.
The future of e-commerce is closely dependent on automation. Technological advancements have led to changing trends being adopted by millions of e-commerce websites. All for one sole reason; ‘stay ahead of competition’. And with years of experience in technology, embracing every automation trend is the key to any business’s success.
Let’s list down a few of the trends that I believe is the future of e-commerce and a must to be embed into your online store for better business in 2021:
The Aftermath of COVID-19 on E-commerce
Undoubtedly, COVID-19 has led to major changes in human lifestyle. One of which is the switch from physical shopping to online. This year, the lockdowns and various rules imposed by the government had led to our favourite shops and restaurants being shut. However, what kept us moving was the idea of online purchases. An easy access to the same stores, what just changed was the medium of buying, the smartphone instead of physical purchase.
This trend is long term. The comfort of shopping from our homes will soon be a lifestyle behaviour. And, this leads to more and more businesses creating their own eCommerce stores with user-friendly shopping experiences. So there has been a remarkable push towards D2C business, compared to growth of marketplaces. Whether a grocery store, a doctor's clinic or a bank, one can easily visit all of the above, not physically but rather virtually.
Any e=commerce store attracts hundreds of visitors daily. In today’s fast paced world, more than just typing, visitors now prefer to search and document with voice. It’s just easier. And well, this automation trend has definitely picked up over time. Statistics state that voice search automation will value approximately $1.25 billion by the year 2025.
Product search in the e-commerce industry has a vital role to play. And automation has eased this feature for every visitor. You may ask how? Here are a few ways:
- Brand visibility: Communication is not only seen, rather heard too.
- Additionally, have you come across a scenario where you have spoken about a product in reality, and suddenly you receive a notification, 'Prices slashed on your favourites'. Well! That’s AI integrated Voice Search for you.
Privacy vs Personalization
Automation makes it easier for companies to offer a more personalized online experience, where content such as ads are relevant based on previous search history. However, there are some underlying concerns when it comes to the user’s privacy. This is definitely something we are going to continue to see in 2021.
While personalization is important, how far is too far? Online businesses will need to learn to find a balance between offering personalized content while maintaining user privacy.
With the pandemic, we’ve seen some truly innovative automation happening in the shipping sector. From drone deliveries to same-day deliveries, companies had to race to make sure they stayed ahead of their competition.
At Dash101, we’ve integrated machine learning and AI to improve deliveries and also offer better services. Our Shipping Partner Recommendation Engine offers a faster and easier way to connect a shipper with shipping companies. Similarly, our smart algorithms improve our delivery rates and reduce RTOs.
We’ve innovated our weight processing, with our unique Weight Discrepancy feature, that allows the customer to raise a request or complaint incase of a weight discrepancy between the customer and the courier company.
We have also seen a significant reduction in returns by automating our non-delivery process. With just a simple IVR call, we’ve seen an improvement in delivery processes.
We expect to see further innovation in eCommerce and shipping, including zero-touch deliveries to headless eCommerce.
Chatbots & IoT
This has already been in the works for the last few years, but there are constant advancements that are still happening and will continue in the future as well. Chatbots are expected to get smarter and better. We’ve already seen voice assistants learn from user input and we believe something similar for Chatbots as well.
Statista predicts the chatbot market to reach around US$ 1.25 billion in 2025, an increase from the US$ 190.8 million in 2016.
The pandemic has helped give us a glimpse into why automation plays an important role in today’s society. Additionally, it also offers more accuracy, consistency and opens more doors for future innovations. Automation comes in all shapes and formats but it’s pretty crucial to embrace techniques that, in the end, are engineered to make our lives easier. eCommerce is going to continue to grow and with it, automation will too. It’s inevitably a gift that will keep on giving.