Logistics in a post-crisis world is about innovation and adaptation. In the past 2 years, the logistics landscape has undergone a massive makeover. The pandemic ushered in an urgency to adapt to the ever-changing consumer behavior, mobility restrictions, demand and supply dynamics, and an uncertain economy. These variables led to supply chains becoming substantially more challenging to manage exacerbated by the uncertain circumstances post Covid-19. As a result, the retail sector became more focused on supply-chain resilience with the help of AI.
As the world reeled through multiple lockdowns, AI-helped retailers hop on to the digitalization bandwagon and understand and map consumer behavior with real-time insights. Owing to the isolation the demand for hyperlocal deliveries skyrocketed. Even as we ease into the new normal, seamless hyperlocal deliveries are the need of the hour. AI has facilitated this move, helping retailers target and engage online shoppers and manage stock and logistics down to the last step. This not only included a profound knowledge of consumer behavior but also, new-age solutions like multi-point pickups and end-to-end visibility, especially for Q-commerce. Brands went on to expand their digital reach owing to the technological advancements including live streaming and live tracking, helping them scale up exponentially.
While demand for food, personal care, and primary health care deliveries soared high, so did the D2C ecosystem. From larger corporations to small business owners to local vendors, everyone shifted towards digitization including accepting payments online and selling via Q-commerce platforms. This led to not only a growth in retail but also improved product quality due to increased competition.
User-friendly AI interfaces allowed for enhanced route planning to plan daily delivery operations taking into consideration various variables like traffic, rider availability, time, etc. From tracking live status to direct connectivity with the delivery executive, the customer experience has been exponentially enhanced.
This surge in hyper-local led to the subsequent surge in technology development for EVs. This vertical has changed the way the industry operates. Major manufacturers are now getting into EV production for logistics which has snowballed into a whole new EV revolution making cities smarter with fast-spreading EV infrastructure. This marriage between hyper-local and EV has allowed the growth of offering E-commerce logistics or hyper-local last-mile logistics, a wide range of customizable tools to automate entire workflows with AI-based order automation. Amongst other things, Ai has made it easier to deploy fleet management and logistics solutions at scale, streamlining local delivery optimization, inventory management, and warehousing.
As market volatility continues to send shockwaves through the retail sector, AI is the buzzword. From analyzing customer behavior and predicting patterns to powering automated order completion, the benefits of AI are abundant.