Unlike traditional retailers who have to first collect data and analyze it, eCommerce firms have the benefit of performing real-time data analytics due to the online nature of the business. As more data gets collected, analytics models will become far more intelligent and
have the ability to predict and place a product that a prospective customer is more likely to buy. While this is already happening, analytics will redefine the future of eCommerce and map trends proactively according to weather patterns and geographic buying behavior. For example, if there is a cold wave in Delhi, automatically, a significant part of the website will show products which protect people from cold. Products such as heaters, blankets, and long protective shoes will appear more prominently on eCommerce websites without a dedicated person changing the look on the website.
To get a better perspective, Dataquest spoke to some industry experts, who share their views on the future of analytics:
The future is inclined towards predictive analytics. Today, eCommerce companies are able to capture each and every move by a user from day one. This data being available for millions of users opens the door to use this data and predict the behavior of a new user. For instance, analytics should be able to predict which product the consumer is more likely to buy after seven days of interaction with multiple products. We should see this capability in the eCommerce industry soon, adds, Prashant Malik, Co-founder and CTO, LimeRoad.com
A data-driven eCommerce strategy is the future which will result in a leaner, shrewder, and more thoughtful business approach. It will create a level playing ground for online players of all sizes and markets. Smaller retailers can hence play against larger ones as far as pricing and deliveries go. Essentially, going forward, big data will allow selling of the right thing at the right time, which will be a big boost for the eCommerce industry at large, adds Sanjay Sethi, CEO, ShopClues.com
Most organizations already have some data available to them, but the next step may be integrating information from multiple sources. This can make information governance and analysis more complex. As different type of information comes together to deliver valuable insights, many organizations may find it beneficial to adopt eCommerce hosting platforms that can integrate with analytics applications, adds Anil Kaul, Co-founder and CEO, Absolutdata Analytics
The eCommerce players in India are not able to contemplate the impact analytics can bring in their business. Their focus of investment is largely on marketing themselves and acquiring more and more customers. But as the competition strengthens, both in the marketplaces and direct online retail, the use of analytics whether to understand consumer behavior, buying patterns as well as trying to make partners (marketplace people) aware of what’s selling and what’s not selling is going to be very important, adds Bhavish Sood, Research Director, Gartner.