“Amazon spend over $20bn annually on technology. Walmart spend over $5bn in capex on ecommerce and technology. It is just not possible for many to play this game.
Being at the frontier of speed is not always necessary:
40% of ecommerce delivery in the UK, which is one of the world’s more developed ecommerce markets, remains slower than next day.
Go beyond borders to build your tribe:
eShopWorld’s US President, Cynthia Hollen, added: ‘Excellence in cross-border ecommerce is an essential part of being a high velocity retailer today. Leading retailers know that building their brand and expanding their customer base around the world is the best way to achieve significant and lasting growth in today’s competitive landscape.'”
Additionally, Alibaba’s high-tech food/grocery retail store concept, known as Hema, is expanding quickly. Exhibit 1. These outlets serve as walk-in restaurants, food and grocery purchase points, and warehouses for online delivery (within 30 minutes in a three-kilometer radius) – all at the same time. There are now 64 Hema stores in operation, with two being added each week. Already, Hema stores in operation for over 18 months are reporting revenues of RMB50k per square meter, up to five times what traditional offline stores can generate. Sixty percent of Hema’s sales are through the online delivery channel, making the stores far more productive, for far more hours of the day, than pure offline stores.1
One of the best aspects of transitioning to a new calendar is the year-in-review pieces written by popular technology blogs and publications. This morning I discovered a post written by Ana Păstrăvanu of thepaypers.com.
Here are just a few of the key take-always. Check out the post for full details.
In Pakistan ecommerce was expected to surpass USD 1 billion in 2018, propelled by the increase in broadband penetration and the rise in the number of online payment merchants.
In India, ecommerce sales reached USD 32.70 billion (an increase of 31% compared to 2017), with growth being driven by Amazon, Flipkart, and Paytm Mall.
In January, Amazon opened Amazon Go, an automated and checkout-free grocery store in Seattle.
Walmart’s take on cashier-less checkout, Scan&Go, started being tested in stores in the US.
A study released by Juniper Research found that global retailers’ spending on AI would reach USD 7.3 billion per annum by 2022.
Flipkart acquired Liv.ai, an India-based AI-led speech recognition software startup, while Walmart partnered with Microsoft for a wider use of cloud and AI technology.
In August, Visa has created a new category of payment aggregator, the marketplace, and updated the requirements that have to be met in order to qualify as a marketplace under Visa’s rules.
2018 marked the world’s biggest purchase of an ecommerce company, the acquisition of Flipkart by Walmart, in May, for USD 16 billion.
Another important announcement regarded Adobe’s intention of acquiring Magento Commerce from private equity company Permira for USD 1.68 billion.
Another important investment in 2018 is marked by Alibaba, which increased its control of Lazada, investing USD 2 billion into the business.
“The technology itself is used primarily to enhance efficiency, though leading CX firms use AI “to bring a deeper level of customer understanding, driving customization and a personalized journey.” Nine-in-10 survey respondents said since incorporating AI, they had seen measurable improvement in the speed of complaint resolution. Eight-in-10 said AI had enhanced the number of calls they were able to process.
While it’s still early days yet with AI, success stories have started to emerge.
Rakuten, a Japanese ecommerce firm, has been able to move three quarters of inbound calls to chatbots, greatly increasing the volume of calls the company can handle.
Canadian mobile telecom carrier Telus was able to offload 40 percent of calls to chatbots, improving service levels and cutting customer wait times from an hour to 2.5 minutes, improving operational efficiency as well as CX. Customer service representative satisfaction also improved.
Alibaba, the Chinese version of Amazon, used AI-powered chatbots on the company’s Tabao site to handle more than 93 percent of customer queries in 2017, which company officials say would have required 83,000 human agents working around the clock. Alibaba now offers these chatbots as a standalone service.”