There isn’t a single industry that hasn’t been impacted by technological advancement. When it comes to leveraging technology innovation, the eCommerce business is no exception. eCommerce was born as a result of technological advancements, and it is the driving force behind the e-commerce trend’s upward trajectory. According to research, India’s retail e-commerce sector grew to $32.7 billion in 2018. In the next four years, by 2022, the market will increase at a remarkable rate reaching $71.9 billion.
It goes without saying that technology is the backbone of eCommerce. It not only facilitates the connection of sellers and buyers on mobile and web platforms, but it also allows for the efficient handling of client orders, deliveries, returns, and payments for purchased goods. Technology enables brands to make data-driven decisions, allowing them to reach an engaged audience at the right moment with the right message, hence assisting brands in growing revenues.
So, let’s dive deep to understand how technology is boosting the growth of D2C brands.
Achieve exponential growth
It’s no secret that growth is essential for every business, and without it, operations would become stagnant. So, regardless of the company’s size, technology is critical for scaling operations, assuring a better customer experience, and increasing brand loyalty. From social media channels for targeted marketing to CRM systems for exceptional customer experience, technology can help brands achieve the next phase of growth. The right mix of technology and business disciplines opens up a world of possibilities for the brand, allowing it to flourish exponentially.
Consumer expectations are evolving, and businesses are expected to deliver unified shopping experiences across multiple channels. Thankfully, there are few groundbreaking technologies shaping the omnichannel strategy for the retail and ecommerce sector.
IoT-connected devices are enabling and empowering omnichannel marketing in a big way. Augmented reality and chatbots are the other set of technological advancements delivering highly engaged experiences. eCommerce stores that integrate AI/VR technology are more likely to stand out and get recognized because they provide a unique experience that online shoppers can’t get anywhere else, resulting in loyalty and improved customer lifetime value.
Betting high on technology
As the D2C market is becoming highly competitive, data-driven decision-making is imperative to success. The use of predictive and prescriptive analytics backed by AI/ ML, allows the brand to predict and understand customers’ purchase behavior, trends, future activity. This improves supply chain management and provides the customer with exactly what he expects to find on the site.
The data, if analyzed correctly, can help brands uncover hidden risks and opportunities, and reduce the guesswork in their business. This helps teams create better business strategies and make informed decisions. Technology also reduces the over-dependence on gut feel and individual brilliance, which is very often sporadic. As a result, technology acts as a “Law of Accelerating Returns,” allowing brands to capitalize on the right opportunities and increase revenues.
Deliver personalized consumer experiences
Customers do not like to be overwhelmed with spam or unproductive messaging. Instead, today’s online buyers look for a delightful purchase, delivery, and return experience in addition to a high-quality product. As a result, brands must capture their consumers’ preferences to guarantee that they are providing the most incredible experience to meet that intent.
However, achieving this talent is definitely an arduous task for any D2C brand, and this is where technology comes in. Using AI, brands can drive real-time decision-making, provide a wide range of consumer insight offerings, and improve customer engagement. It enables the brand to provide more personalized recommendations, which increases conversion rates.
With competition getting stiffer, there is immense pressure on D2C brands to stand out from the rest. Marketing automation technology has enabled D2C brands to differentiate their brand. Backed by a robust customer data platform, marketing technology companies help D2C brands capture and analyze data (personal, behavioral) from multiple sources across the customer journey in real-time.
Actionable insights and recommendations are distilled from this data to create personalized campaigns and implement intelligent multichannel engagement strategies at scale. D2C brands that are able to find opportunities and act on them tend to outpace their competitors who are left playing catch up.
The lockdown proved to be a boon for the D2C sector, propelling the online demand to new heights. This structural shift was possible only because of the availability of adequate technologies to support it. So, no matter how far we go, technology will continue to play an inextricable and seamless role in the growth of the D2C sector.
— Mangesh Panditrao
The author is Co- Founder and CEO, Shoptimize.