Logistics brings online retail to life. This makes it a very important service to online retailers. As a result, etailers are making efforts to build their networks and enhance their fulfilment services. Flipkart introduced Smart Fulfillment to speed up delivery, Amazon set up 7 new warehouses to meet the demand for large appliances.
Now, it’s Snapdeal’s turn. The online marketplace recently introduced its Open Logistics Platform (OLP). This is state of the art plug and play technology for third-party logistics (3PL) couriers to use Snapdeal’s logistics management system. This platform from the ecommerce company offers superior advantages when it comes to delivery.
What does OLP do?
“As we work with diverse 3PL partners across different regions, we realised that regional logistics players cater to remote geographic areas but are low on technology or lack the financial muscle to control the end user experience. To create a consistent customer experience, we felt the need to improve capabilities of our last-mile delivery partners. The OLP integration is a ground-breaking step in that direction,” said Rajiv Mangla, the CTO for Snapdeal.
Snapdeal is also trying to get rural artisans on board through its smart village project. So, improving logistics in these remote areas will help sellers deliver goods to the rest of the country more efficiently.
The couriers that chose to adopt the OLP will receive benefits for a significant advantage over others. They will be able to concentrate on their core operations, improve customer experience and cut costs with optimised operational efficiencies.
OLP by Snapdeal was piloted a year ago with a few courier providers. The platform is expected to offer –
- End to end visibility of in-transit shipments
- Analytics info to plan capacity and load on different lines and timely interventions for effective last mile delivery
- Smart management of peaks and trough season demand volumes as per courier capabilities
- Technology to help delivery partners focus on their key operations
Individual integrations with courier companies occurs through API (application program interface) to API basis. But every player has a different API. This makes integration a long tedious process and it can take months to finish. As a SaaS platform, OLP allows one to stay ahead because it takes care of providing necessary innovations just in time. It reduces integration time into just a week.
As Snapdeal tries to perfect delivery, Flipkart is aiming to perfect sales generation. The mighty etailer is also using high-tech to boost business on its platform. It will be using artificial intelligence to increase efficiency and reduce returns on its marketplace. Hopefully these technological approaches by Snapdeal and Flipkart will complement each other as many anticipate their meager.