As consumer habits change and become more adaptable, the introduction of IoT devices has resulted in a commensurate shift in the e-commerce arena. To stay lucrative and competitive, both retail and e-commerce firms may benefit from staying on top of digital marketing trends. The global IoT in the retail market is forecasted to reach $182.04 billion by 2028, according to BusinessWire. These figures demonstrate how quickly this technology is transforming the e-commerce industry.
Here are some of the most promising IoT applications for e-commerce:
- Enhanced Logistics & Tracking: Retailers can gain greater visibility into the order fulfillment process with IoT, allowing them to satisfy the needs of online consumers. IoT helps e-commerce merchants to track customer orders from the beginning of order placement till they arrive at their destination. Retailers can use management systems to track each inventory such that they automatically locate the goods no matter where they are. Cloud-based technologies like GPS and RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) provide retailers with information like weather, traffic conditions, employee IDs, and location, allowing for more efficient logistics management. It also aids in the automation of shipping and delivery, reducing the risk of missing goods and optimizing vehicle routes.
- Automating Inventory Management: To determine what is in and out of stock, e-commerce retailers like to have control over the goods coming in and out of their warehouses. Business operations can be made much easier with RFID tags and IoT sensors embedded in inventory systems. The retailers don’t need to engage shop managers to physically inspect items because they have real-time information on their stock. IoT supports e-commerce in this way since it captures and sends out fresh and relevant data on items to ERP systems. It also decreases human mistakes in inventory management and stock ordering or reordering. Retailers can also watch inventory, check appropriate temperatures for perishable commodities, and receive quick alerts when needed, using smart shelves and temperature-monitoring sensors.
- Improving Manufacturer-Consumer Relationship: IoT ensures a positive relationship is built through linked appliances, resulting in a long-term engagement between durable goods manufacturers and customers. IoT may help merchants generate new revenue streams by introducing new business models by offering continuous services like remote monitoring, predictive maintenance, and product performance analytics.
- Customized Information & Actions: IoT combines personal data with brand data to provide more customized experiences. E-commerce businesses can utilize the consumer’s connections to provide more tailored information and actions while also combining data to further personalize their experiences for households and individual members. As more data and insight into consumer behavior becomes available, digital marketers will be able to better appeal to their customers and influence their purchasing decisions along the customer journey.
- IoT Focused e-commerce websites: The popularity of online shopping has grown, putting pressure on companies to make the customer experience as simple as possible. With IoT, businesses must figure out how to use data from many sources and devices and be responsive to smart devices like phones and iPads, along with other connected objects. As a result, merchants may design responsive websites that use IoT to improve the online user experience.
- Automated Shopping Processes: Automated checkouts, like Amazon Go, are becoming a reality thanks to the IoT. The shoppers can go in, buy, and walk out with the amount of the purchase billed to their smartphones. Furthermore, predictive technologies will be able to forecast when clients are ready to buy and will prepare things for them to pick up based on their shopping lists. They only have to pick up from the drive-through after sending the details of the things they want to purchase to vending machines.
The IoT ecosystem is about internet-connected items, which e-commerce players must keep in mind. Thus, IoT-enabled e-commerce is an evolution than a revolution. As more gadgets gain smart traits and get connected, the potential of IoT technology will dramatically improve e-commerce.