Yes, e-commerce is everywhere, and we are have made a steady progress within last ten years –
- Real Time Tracking
- Logistics have improved
- Not just home deliveries but now you can pick your deliverable from any “Pick Up ”
- Home Trials
- Penetration to tier2 and tier 3 cities
- Wide range of Payment options
- Data Analytics Integration
- Virtual Trial Rooms
- 3D images
But what next? IoT Integration or Robots delivering the stuff?
Even before that, I see “gray areas” where improvements are needed. Are the Founders listening?
Case One – Gift Vouchers in different currencies.
Recently one of my acquaintances[India] received an award with a gift voucher from Amazon in dollars. Amazon India does not accept it, and finally, he had to let it go! Shouldn’t the gift vouchers be available in whatever currency you want?
Your friend is shifting to the US, and rather than gifting him with a Pressure Cooker, I would be more willing to gift him a Voucher in Dollars that could help him in setup his new home in states.
Case Two – Auto Execution Of Orders
I need to borrow the “Order Types” [where you can put a condition on the price or quantity and let the market decide whether order gets executed] from Capital Market to the e-commerce platform. Just, for example, Flipkart is running its grand Diwali sale for three days, and on an opening day, I need to catch a train. While yes, you can browse over your phone but still why should I worry, when I can put a condition that if the price is within these limits for the item, I want to purchase let me buy it. This kind of situation would help any individual and save their time.
Case Three -Global Items At Your Doorstep
Have you not called up your buddy to get a laptop from the US? I know people who also get some special chips from the US that are baked and have a vegetable puree. Or your distant relative who is returning from Holland to get you some fresh cheese!
Yes, Amazon opened their global store, but how about I could browse any location and get at my home delivered. A filter that sets the country like you set for language/Region and could then browse the items. I see two advantages of this – you could get items legally paying charges and secondly you know they would be authentic.
Case Four – What happened to my feedback?
You always send us a mail to be courteous and to help you improve if we could provide you with feedback. But even once have you acknowledged it? What happens to our comments? Do you bother to reply to those people who spent time and effort to provide you with feedback?
Draft a response, even if the feedback was not worth it, no matter how much automation and Artificial intelligence you put, personal experience is what counts and is cherished.
Case Five – How To Know You Are a reliable Store?
You might have seen consumer forum flooded with complaints against online store? So, who pays the price? How could a customer judge whether they are genuine and reliable? Apart from the trusted brands every web page or Facebook is flooded with advertisement about selling this and that. How do we know you are genuine? Do we need some regulations here? Or simply customer response is the only alternative?
Case Six – A Reward just for new registration but what about the loyal customer?
Most of the e-commerce hubs have attractive discounts for the newbie [ maybe that helps them to reach a minimum number of customer base] but what about customers who are loyal?
I remember during my childhood days when fix brick-and-mortar stores would offer Diwali/New Year gifts like a calendar or a box of sweets and made us stick to them.
Could the stores take the help from Data Analytics and offer “rewards” to loyal customers? Maybe once they reach 5k mark or once they have completed ten purchases? Or if you buy every month you get a top-up?
Case Seven – Need of NOT Filter, the exclusion filter
Most of the sites come with a filter to include stuff, what if I want only that specific brand to be excluded and rest all in, I would need to click all the others. Just for example if I am browsing a phone and I do not want a filter that shows me ‘X’ brand phone and rest all should be displayed. It is quite painful to click all the brands just to remove one; there should be an exclusion filter as well it makes search easy.
Case Eight – Customer needs the bricks-and-mortar store experience with digital features
Have we thought of tracking the customer at a physical store may be via MAC ids or NFC and that could be used even for an online presence? Footfalls in stores can be converted to sales online. As a customer, I may feel a need to touch-n-feel the stuff, but buying could be done once the sale is on, so how do we track these analytics?
As the expert believe #onlineretail is still about customers and one of the customer is offering you a detailed feedback. Are you listening?