18 October 2016

How Amazon could disrupt e-commerce supply chain

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We live in an age where technology is constantly changing and transforming businesses and how they operate. For example, Uber can become the world’s biggest taxi company without owning any cars and Airbnb can become the world’s biggest hotel chain without owning any bricks and mortar. 

Unless you’ve been living under a rock these past few years, shopping online from the comfort of your home is now the norm. Who’d ever have imagined that people would buy apparel and footwear based on an image online without trying them on?

Hence, the rise of the digital revolution, diverse customer behaviour, and aggressive competition has reshaped the Australian retail industry as we know it.

Retailers are under colossal pressure to offer a wide variety of last mile fulfilment options in the age of speed to market delivery. In fact, according to an econsultancy report, 50% of customers would abandon a purchase if retailers can't provide sufficient delivery options.

The execution of last mile delivery has never been more crucial to meet the evolving demands of the diverse customer segment while ensuring an engaged seamless journey from click to delivery.  The key here is customer experience. It doesn’t matter if your website is fancy and easy to navigate, it can all fall apart if the courier fails to deliver your order on time and without delays.

Recently, word broke that Amazon is considering creating its own fleet of air freight shippers to compete head to head with UPS, FedEx, and the USPS.  Amazon has already disrupted cloud computing with Amazon Web Services.

However, the big questions is: will customers pay enough for rapid delivery to cover all these new costs? Is this the way of the future for all supply chains?

Amazon deliveries already account for 4% of UPS’s overall business, around $2 billion worth of revenue. Will other retailers take Amazon’s ambitions as an example and also attempt to take over from big courier companies?

The best part of my job as an Assistant General Manager – Production is to create and manage my own conferences from concept to delivery, identify future conference topics as well as giving me a chance to expand my business card collection. Having a bit of a sweet tooth, you will always find me having lollies on my desk or you will catch me browsing on fashion sites during lunch breaks.

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