It’s an exciting time to be part of the e-commerce sector. According to top SaaS providers BigCommerce, the industry’s been experiencing 23% of year-over-year growth. Nasdaq has predicted even further that up to 95% of all purchases will be done online by the year 2040. And as per KPMG, customers will keep shopping online because they have the chance to do so every hour of the day. Even early into 2020, e-commerce entrepreneurs can expect big things to affect their business—and most will have to do with the fulfilment process. Which trends in e-commerce fulfilment will reign supreme?
Which methods of doing business online will prove the most effective to business owners?
Here’s a quick rundown of six top trends in e-commerce fulfilment, what they involve, and how they may affect your e-commerce company.
1. Scaled-Up Ecommerce Fulfillment Due to Growth of the Online Marketplace
By 2021, e-commerce is projected to generate more than $4 trillion in sales.
That means that the sector is still growing, and e-commerce fulfilment will evolve along with it by necessity.
This kind of growth will likely see the rise of top third-party logistics (3PL) providers like the US’s own Red Stag Fulfillment. It’s 3PLs that have the capacity to manage scaled-up order fulfilment.
So, if strong growth is something you expect for your own business, perhaps you should consider making ties with a 3PL company.
2. Emphasis on Real-Time Data and Use of Data Analytics
The market itself is constantly evolving, and consumers may decide differently about their purchases from moment to moment.
Given this challenge, what can help an e-commerce business keep up?
What can they use to be more responsive to ever-changing market demands?
The answer pertains to using real-time data to bolster e-commerce fulfilment.
If they invest in real-time data analytics, e-commerce entrepreneurs will have a better hold of what the market is like.
They’ll also get objective insight on where they’re lacking in the order fulfilment process and, consequently, be able to act on it.
If an objective assessment is what you need to improve your order fulfilment services, you may want to pool some of your resources into analytics.
3. Even More Personalized Online Shopping Experiences
Ecommerce businesses have already figured out the value of customized orders.
A personalized experience helps customers connect with the brand and sustain a meaningful relationship with it.
In 2020, it’s likely that e-commerce fulfilment will drive the customer experience even further.
This is because special customer requests, like branded or personalized packaging, can be taken down during order fulfilment.
Giving your customers options like these will add a lot of value to your order fulfilment.
It will become from something plain and necessary to a key factor in delivering the ultimate consumer experience.
4. Faster Shipping
Some e-commerce sites can already achieve same-day shipping, and perhaps those with two-day shipping windows will try to catch up.
That makes a lot of sense since the speed of delivery is a major competitive edge.
Customers will often stick to who can get their order to them the fastest, and they’ll stay with that shop for a longer time.
Once again, it may be the 3PL providers who will rule over this trend.
They’re the ones who have the infrastructure and fleet to carry out fast, large-scale shipping.
If your own fleet won’t be enough in the near future, you can find someone to move your products for you.
5. Greater Reliance on Automation
Amazon, the king of modern e-commerce platforms, has already dispatched robotics technologies in its fulfilment centres.
Though smaller eCommerce companies won’t be doing the same for a long time, they’ll be interested in something in the same vein: automation technology.
E-commerce sites are drawing more and more on automated processes to make their order fulfilment more accurate, efficient, and manageable.
So, as an e-commerce entrepreneur, you should welcome any developments in automation that come up in the year 2020.
6. Greater Reliance on Augmented Reality (AR) for Decision Making
AR for order fulfilment follows the same principle as a virtual fitting room in an e-commerce store.
Current warehousing technologies may let e-commerce entrepreneurs access AR for inventory management purposes.
Among other things, AR may help e-commerce owners glimpse the warehouse space.
They can estimate how to store and layout their products in the warehouse—all without having to visit the physical location.
Just like the AR tech in a virtual fitting room, AR in inventory management will be extremely convenient for you.
It will also help you to make accurate fulfilment-related decisions on behalf of your e-commerce company.
All six of these trends are set to make an impact in the online marketplace—your e-commerce business included.
Stay updated and see which you can adapt for yourself.
That’s the only way to avoid obsoletion and keep your e-commerce site modernized and competitive.