Surviving the Amazon Effect With Technological Upgrades

Amazon is an economic disrupter in e-commerce, consumer behavior, and shipping. It’s referred to as the Amazon effect—Amazon’s impact on shipping and delivery that causes suppliers to adapt to Amazon’s innovation and best practices to survive in today’s global marketplace. There’s been a domino effect across supply chains, leaving manufacturers and suppliers to invest in technology that fosters supply chain resilience.

For example, Amazon provides a colossal inventory and the convenience of features like one-click checkout and overnight shipping. Retailers have adjusted accordingly, increasing demand for visibility in manufacturing.

Adopting real-time tracking

Amazon’s real-time tracking of transactions and shipments has led consumers and sellers to expect 24/7 transparency from shippers. At every step of the supply chain, managers expect to know where orders are at any moment in the process.

Shippers can integrate applications that use blockchain technology, allowing the entire process of an order to be tracked in real-time. AI systems can also manage large amounts of data, giving shippers an opportunity to analyze that data for demand forecasting and other predictive purposes. Likewise, the Internet of Things (IoT) provides a system for data transfer. These systems translate to more efficiency and transparency for the e-commerce experience.

Expanding inventory capabilities

Amazon manages a high volume of small orders consisting of just a few items. Users enjoy the benefits of a seemingly endless selection, free delivery, and a personalized shopping experience. This innovation has led to general pressure on manufacturers to increase inventory and capacity for direct deliveries.

For shippers, adapting to the Amazon effect means investing in integrative models for order management, warehouse management and especially logistics management. Incorporating technologies with full omnichannel capabilities can determine the survival of retailers and manufacturers alike. Suppliers can adopt customizable technology solutions in the form of integrated shipping platforms. Integrated platforms allow companies to continuously incorporate new logistics technologies.

Automation in warehouses

The accessibility of robots and robotic software for warehouses is increasing with the continuous digitization of distribution. With increased automation, manufacturers can reduce costs, manage higher volumes, and reduce the spread of the coronavirus with less human contact.

While the level of automation varies depending on the level of volume a manufacturer manages, across the board, the incorporation of technologies like pick-to-light applications ha been transformative for shipping. With pick-to-light apps, operators dramatically improve order fulfillment performance. It proves that you don’t have to be Amazon to maximize the efficiency of your workforce.

The Amazon effect vs. TMS

Amazon has constant access to updates from content providers such as Strategic Technology Partners, BI Analytics, and Google. Thankfully for shippers, transportation management systems like CTSI-Global’s HoneyBee TMS™ provide the same. The integrative platform allows shippers to directly access the latest and greatest developments in AI, mapping, broker markets, and currency conversion.

A robust TMS has a logistics applications framework that maximizes supply chain management. CTSI-Global’s HoneyBee TMS™ multi-carrier shipping application provides access to over 20,000 carriers and continuous data at all steps of the shipping process. Using applications built with API, shippers can easily manage their orders and provide the real-time visibility customers expect.

The Amazon Effect has forever changed consumer behavior, permanently changing seller behavior and ultimately affecting the supply chain. Shippers can adapt to the shift with an ongoing commitment to technological upgrades.

Shippers with access to a robust TMS can optimize warehouse technologies, consolidate freight, and increase visibility for manufacturers and sellers alike. The HoneyBee TMS™ effortlessly optimizes the latest technologies, incorporating all the tools that a supplier needs in a one-stop-shop shipping platform.

Contact CTSI-Global today to talk about how you can survive the Amazon effect.