Are Drones The Future Of eCommerce?
Virtual assistance, eCommerce elements for video and image search, in-depth insights into customers’ preferences, chatbots –are just a few of the many applications of artificial intelligence that have changed the way we live and work in the last few years. AI has been helping brands enhance the customer experience and brand interaction, but AI drones are the advanced technology.
AI drones have become the talk of the town, and we have some exciting information to share with you. To begin with, customer research has shown that customers and online shoppers are inclined to having their favorite packages delivered to their doorstep with a drone. That’s because it is known to enhance the delivery speed.
Therefore, it looks like everyone is speculating about drones, and VCs aren’t standing behind to invest millions of dollars in AI drone businesses. Imagine walking to your office and watching automated drones roving around the buildings with packages dangling from the arms – it sure sounds far-fetched, but big names in business have already started this experiment.
Do You Know What Amazon Did?
Amazon recently nodded to this new concept, and they have applied AI drones to their logistics, known as Amazon Prime Air. This is the delivery system aimed at delivering the customers’ packages to them in less than thirty minutes. Currently, this concept is not operating, but it sure aligns with Amazon and their ability to adopt innovation.
Alibaba Is Also Delivering Packages With Drones
Alibaba is a leading eCommerce venture based in China, and they have claimed that they use drones to deliver parcels over the water bodies (this is the first time a company is making drone deliveries over water). According to research, three drones carried six cartons of passion fruit and delivered them near Meizhuo Island (started from Putian).
The boxes weight twelve kilograms, and they managed to fly 5kms in 9 minutes, even when there were strong winds. These drones were designed by Cainiao Network and a local tech firm. Similarly, other eCommerce brands are using drones and robots to get ahead of the competition and manage the business during high order season.
At this point, it’s pretty evident that automation technology is becoming the buzzword, and JD.com has launched the sorting center to develop highly efficient and smart logistics systems.
Future Of AI Drones In eCommerce Industry
However, Amazon is not the only brand to use AI drones because the leading pizza chain – Domino’s Pizza wants to utilize DomiComputer to deliver pepping hot pizzas to their customers while Taobao wants to make tea deliveries throughout China. So, if AI drones actually come out and get used commercially, they can be used for medication, books, and food deliveries.
In addition, it’s safe to say that AI drones will become a competitive edge for brands that offer AI drones for parcel delivery. Currently, launching drone delivery services is fast gaining popularity amongst businesses and users alike. Similarly, AI drones have sent undulations throughout the world, both positive and negatives.
At this point, it’s evident that AI drones will be used for delivery purposes but will they transform the eCommerce industry? In the section below, we are sharing how AI drones can impact the industry!
- Higher Customer Satisfaction
The drones are highly likely to take the delivery services to a new level and will offer hassle-free and efficient deliveries. Drones will be operated and maintained by retailers and companies rather than depending on third-party logistics for delivering the products. That being said, the customers will be able to get their products delivered in a lesser time, promising higher customer satisfaction.
- Improved Supply Chains
When it comes down to drone deliveries, the companies will require an in-depth and total overhaul of the supply chain systems. The drones are likely to replace the logistic carriers, and new systems will be needed to match the products, loading packages on the drones before they take off, and more. Similarly, human resources might require training to use drones while complying with the aviation instructions and guidelines.
What About The Challenges?
Sure, the deliveries will be quicker but will customers be open to the idea of getting their products delivered without getting intimidated? The drones have higher chances of limitation, especially if a customer has a complicated address because drones cannot move into narrow avenues or tight corridors. This is because drones are designed and configured to follow the pre-installed paths.
Moreover, if customers are staying at some off-limit address, the customers will need to walk a few blocks to collect the parcel – will they do this? Sure, it can impact the doorstep delivery system, and brands will need to consider strategies to help tackle this grave issue and keep up with customer satisfaction.
Will Small Retailers Also Win At This?
Drones are extremely expensive, let alone the AI ones. With such high costs, it looks like only eBay and Amazon will purchase the drones while the smaller brands will be priced out, given the higher costs. As a result, they won’t be able to compete within the service industry. In fact, we only see it for drone-oriented deliveries and small businesses, but what’s the future for stressed brick-and-mortar businesses? It’s safe to say that online shopping will be more saturated as compared to offline shopping since drones will bring convenience by using ai image processing.
Wrapping It Up
Drone deliveries look far-fetched right now, but they are a few years away from complete adoption. There are various issues to be resolved while air traffic management and flying regulations have to be hammered, especially when it comes to security. Then, there is an issue related to complicated addresses and hard-to-reach addresses – how will drones cater to that? Not to forget, how will the general public react to drones hovering over their head?
It looks like large-scale logistics companies will need to diversify and launch a drone category to offer on-contract delivery services. To summarize, AI drones have raised eyebrows but also millions of dollars. So, let’s see what the future holds for AI drones because we would love to watch them soar high!