Robots lift Australian e-commerce to global standards
October 14, 2020
eStore Logistics is an 11-year old business that specialises in warehousing and fulfilment for e-commerce and omni-channel retailers.
It’s helping to bring e-commerce in Australia, which is relatively immature in comparison with other markets such as the UK or US, up to international standards, where fast deliveries and turnaround of orders is much more advanced than in the local market.
“Over the last few years we’ve been looking at different way to improve delivery times for consumers. That led us to our autonomous mobile robot project, which has enabled us to speed delivery times for retailers and better meet consumer changing demands,” says Leigh Williams eStore Logistics’ founder and managing director.
The pandemic has been a positive experience for eStore Logistics, with a consumers increasingly shopping online as a result of COVID and its ensuing lockdowns. “Our robots went live in March this year, which was extremely good timing,” he says.
Williams acknowledges consumer satisfaction is a battleground for retailers in Australia, with consumers putting increasing pressure on a broader range of retailers to offer same-day delivery.
“Any retailer that can get ahead and offer this earlier will have a head-start on the competition,” he says.
eStore Logistics’ model is particularly attractive for smaller retailers that don’t have the capital, time or resources to invest in this type of sophisticated technology individually.” Our offer gives them quick speed to market and is scalable, helping to manage peaks and troughs in sales volume,” Williams explains.
The eStore Logistics’ team is presently working on a project to optimise shipping routes for e-commerce customers.
“We offer a wide range of shipping carriers for last-mile delivery and we’re developing software that plugs directly into the shopping cart and gives customers live updates about orders being delivered with different carriers. This relies on algorithms we have developed that can perform functions such as 3-D cubing and cartonisation.
“That means if we there are multiple items on the order, the software can work out the most efficient way for the order to be shipped, such as which warehouses to ship from and which carrier to use, “he adds.
It is technology that will help bring local e-commerce businesses up to international standards, which is important in an environment in which consumers are demanding faster fulfilment and delivery, including same day delivery, which in the past has been cost prohibitive.
Says Williams: “That’s one of the main challenges we’ve overcome with this technology.” He expects consumers to continue to shop online and e-commerce will continue to grow in the coming years, even when the pandemic ends.