E-commerce is leading the retail disruption. However, it still has a long way to go to consistently contribute to customer delight. TimeTrade’s ‘State of Retail 2016’ report, informs that 72% of customer surveyed still prefer to shop from traditional brick-and-mortar stores as much as they had done in 2015, despite access to e-commerce portals. What’s more, 18% propose to visit stores more often than they had done in the previous year.
The only answer to ensuring seamless customer experience is through technological innovation. Whileis widely accepted as an essential technology for the retail industry, there is a constant need for adapting to newer technology to prevent stagnation. Robotics and drones, an extension of automated technology, will propel the retail industry towards the next level of tech innovation.
Amazon has been a forerunner in tech innovation. It had predicted that the future Retail IT lies with robotics and drones. It toyed with this idea way back in 2014 and came up with the Big Idea of 30-Minutes drone delivery, targeting a 2017 launch for the same. Google X’s initiative, Project Wing, is another instance of how commercial drone delivery has arrived and how! DHL’s ‘Microdrones’, the international freight delivery organization, is another example that indicates that companies worldwide have realized that automated technology will drive the future of the Retail IT industry.
Let’s discuss what makes drones and robotics the new wave of disruption.
- Achieving better accuracy through tracking inventory: Tracking inventory through robotics is a step ahead of tracking the same through cloud. Monitoring data, taking stock and keeping records become more convenient as the in-built robotic assistants can be activated at the click of buttons.
- Faster pickup and delivery: Drones will improve faster pickups, improving the time taken for transporting shipments. As Amazon seeks to achieve, same day delivery will also become a reality soon.
- Seamless returns and replacements: As drones delivery will not face impediments like traffic, it will offer hassle-free and speedier return and replacements solutions. Furthermore, shipments for return and replacement can be initiated when the product that is being returned is still in transit.
- Automate moving of freight: Manual labor for sorting and loading of shipments from warehouses will become a passé with the deployment of commercial drones. Several drones can be deployed to meet the increased demand. This will enhance handling performances and control labor costs.
- Improve security of shipment in warehouses and during transportation: The video cameras of drones are equipped to gain accessibility to places in the warehouse that are otherwise difficult to reach out to, reducing thefts. Drones are also enabled to keep a close eye on shipments, especially high-value cargo being transported by waterways.
Like the automated technology of Microsoft Dynamics DX, drones are one more way to ensures flexibility, scalability and accountability in the industry.