Akshay Gulati, Co-founder, ShiprocketMore From The Author >>
Technology’s Pivotal Role In Making Global Shipping Hassle-Free
Today, consumers are buying more things online than ever before, yet they still want the immediate satisfaction of instant transactions. This indicates that customers want handling and shipment periods to be completed more quickly
The shipping industry has always been efficient, but it has been slow to accept new technologies that could disrupt the existing logistics infrastructure. Technological change in logistics has happened as step functions due to the high investment needed in fixed infrastructure but rapid technological changes have reduced the time between these step functions. Operating in the digital age implies the sector must make use of new technology to cater to high consumer expectations regarding shipment times and sustainable operations.
Today, consumers are buying more things online than ever before, yet they still want the immediate satisfaction of instant transactions. This indicates that customers want handling and shipment periods to be completed more quickly.
The shipping industry is undergoing a technology revolution now. This age-old industry till the last decade was hesitant to harness new technology but now has taken up all-around modernization with a vengeance. Startups that are developing tech solutions specifically for the industry are also supporting its digitization ambitions. Drones, AI, machine learning, the internet of things, blockchain, and other technologies are being used to create a more secure, productive environment for conducting export and import trade.
As digitization and technology blur geographical boundaries, consumers can now have their products of choice sourced from anywhere in the world. Indian e-commerce brands, too, realizing the potential the market offers, are looking at globalization as their next frontier. Let us understand how is technology making cross-border shipping a hassle-free, efficient process-
Digitalisation of freight
Increased internet proliferation and smartphone usage have paved the way for consumers to discover the multitude of options, convenience, and efficiency that e-commerce offers. Similarly, for brands, it has become easier to reach consumers and cater to their ever-growing expectations, largely thanks to technology. Most e-commerce and D2C sellers partner with third-party logistics and fulfillment platforms that have multiple courier partners and tech-driven systems to ensure streamlined, efficient operations.
Seamless integration with minimum documentation
Ecommerce sellers require access to online marketplaces to gain a wider consumer reach and sell their products. With a technology-driven system and third-party platforms, the sellers can seamlessly integrate with globally recognized e-commerce marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Shopify, WooCommerce, etc. Through these platforms, sellers not only be able to build a solid online presence but also reach customers thousands of miles away and eventually scale their business. Besides, third-party platforms can enable sellers to integrate with e-commerce marketplaces without tons of paperwork and documentation. Minimal documentation, i.e., an IEC (Import Export Code), is sufficient for sellers to get started on shipping their products across borders.
Unified tracking and instant updates
Although logistics and fulfillment platforms offering cross-border shipping tend to have multiple courier partners, they need to be able to track each shipment. 93% of ecommerce sellers are either offering or plan to offer order status tracking to their customers, which means they themselves have a shipment tracking system in place. The third-party platforms offfer options like unified tracking where one can track orders of multiple carriers to different destinations from a single platform.
In addition, with technologies like AI, ML, Big Data, and IoT, the sellers and the customers can receive instant, real-time updates about the package via various methods, including e-mail and SMS. This ensures that customers are informed about their orders. Some logistics platforms also provide non-delivery reasons and ensure the package is safely returned to the seller or the warehouse in case incomplete delivery.
Quick, cost-effective shipping
Consumers’ expectations have increased, and they look for sellers who can ship their orders efficiently without having to shell out a huge sum of money. Since shipping across borders means there are multiple facets involved, including compliance in the country the product is being shipped to, ensuring that costs don’t go overboard is important Leveraging technology, third-party platforms can help sellers determine the best shipping methods, the best suited courier partner for delivery etc., to keep costs from rising too much while making sure the delivery reaches the end consumer on time.
Cross-border shipping can be hassle-free, especially for sellers who have just commenced their business or are new to shipping their products internationally. However, with the right technologies, third-party partners, and the experience gained over time, cross-border shipping conducted by leveraging cutting-edge technology can make it a simpler process that allows the business to grow and help India to become a global hub
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house
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