Turn customer feedback into innovation: Praful Poddar of Shiprocket

With constantly changing consumer needs, it becomes important for logistical-tech companies to innovate and offer solutions that can help D2C brands provide a better shipping experience.
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The logistics industry has undergone a major transformation as several factors such as technology, reforms, and the efforts of players continue to change the landscape of the sector. Multiple new-age startups have sought to disrupt the sector by digitising and automating the processes. But, the ones that stand out, primarily focus on innovation.

To discuss how innovation in logistics is helping D2C brands in India, Praful Poddar, SVP of Product Development at Shiprocket, shared his views on the evolution of the logistics sector and what makes Shiprocket a favourite logistics partner for most D2C brands in the country. Here are a few key highlights of his fireside chat with YourStory.

Tech to power next phase of growth

Praful looks at the evolution in the logistic sector as a phased one over the last decade and describes it in three phases. Initially, it was about setting up operations at the backend to be available across the country, followed by startups like Shiprocket to simplify the entire shipping process, and now state-of-the-art technology is driving the logistics ecosystem with innovative solutions.

“Technology is the backbone of what is going to power the next few years of evolution in logistics,” he said.

Simplicity at the heart of innovation

“From a tech and product standpoint, it is difficult to build simple things. Being close to your customers is the key to building simple yet innovative solutions,” added Praful.

He believes the closer you are to your customer, the better solutions you can build. It is important to take customer feedback seriously and work towards improving the experience.

“Early customer feedback, doing prototype testing, and going to the market for beta launches gives us a lot of early feedback to ensure we can refine our product and create something that makes a huge impact,” said Praful.

Establishing a partnership with D2C brands

For an e-commerce brand, logistics is usually a cost line item where they are looking to reduce the cost associated with the shipping process. “We help D2C brands in reducing the information asymmetry between the seller, buyer, and courier services for them to deliver an enhanced consumer experience and build a sustainable unit economics,” explained Praful.

“We now look at ourselves not just as a logistics partner but also as a business partner to D2C brands. For example, we focus on helping brands generate more orders by offering a seamless post selling experience to their customers and driving repeat purchases. That is how we are building a strong partnership with emerging D2C brands of the country,” he added.

Shiprocket uses data science to detect discrepancies in online orders which is to help D2C brands to detect fake/fraudulent orders. The company has systems that provide buyer history to brands to enable them to make informed decisions in terms of fulfilling orders.

Trends to dominate the delivery space

According to Praful, quick commerce is a trend to look out for in the future. A lot of e-commerce and especially grocery brands are already providing the same-day delivery experience to consumers. “It is now time to introduce quick commerce services to more and more categories such as fashion, health and beauty and beyond,” he noted.

Praful further opines that data will also play a significant role in the future. Brands that have the tech to analyse and use the data in the right manner will always have an edge over their competitors.

Post order journey refers to the processes after the order has been placed. It includes managing the orders, figuring out the shipping, finding out if there is any discrepancy, post shipping experience etc. “At Shiprocket, our focus is on making the post order journey easy for the seller. We are working in the direction of providing an experience which is more than just shipping clubbed with innovation,” concluded Praful.



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