How Can Hyperlocal Brands Write Success Stories In the D2C Landscape?

Hyperlocal brands in D2C are seen to offer customers the best of both virtual and real worlds

By
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Consumers today are well-informed about their shopping options, and when given the opportunity, they favour convenience over everything else. Understanding this, hyperlocal brands in India have capitalised on the wave of COVID-19 to deliver at the click of a button. Thanks to the flexible and customisable delivery choices offered by hyperlocal brands, customers may get groceries, home care, personal care, fashion, accessories and meals delivered to their doors.

Pexels

Furthermore, amid the narrowing order fulfilment windows, rising logistics costs and the overall shift in customer behaviour, businesses are switching to hyperlocal deliveries to cope with the ever-evolving consumer expectations. According to a report, the hyperlocal services industry is expected to grow from $1,324.2 billion in 2019 to $3,634.3 billion by 2027. And it is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 17.9 per cent from 2021 to 2027.

So let's see some points hyperlocal brands need to keep in mind to thrive in the D2C space.

Automation

Any company that continues to rely on manual procedures will struggle to stay afloat in these rapidly changing times. Manual dependency will be a roadblock to the hyperlocal industry's goal of fulfilling orders in the shortest time. As a result, automation is at the heart of all efficient logistics management. It will be a critical strategy for the entire supply chain, from warehousing to logistics to time-bound deliveries.

Hence, smart logistics management tools that use AI and ML will be essential in optimising hyperlocal deliveries through the appropriate vehicle and resource assignment based on auto allocation and expediting deliveries and returns by intelligent in order clubbing. Apart from that, automating deliveries aids in implementing smart processes by utilising pre-determined variables such as mass, volume, distance from the customer and driver load. Furthermore, these tools can also be used to create a single consistent source of truth for all the customer data. The result of consolidation is that it gives a 360-degree view of the business, interdependencies and the ability to see the impact of data-backed decisions.

Focus on AI and Ml

The focus on AI and ML is pivotal for ensuring seamless hyperlocal services in the D2C space. Organisations are using AI and machine learning-powered technologies to help them optimise logistical processes and manage disruptions. As more brands compete to use these game-changing concepts to improve predictability, boost customer visibility, promote data-driven decision making, and achieve operational efficacy, hyperlocal brands can't ignore this trend.

Setting up hybrid stores

Soon, inventory management will become smarter. Earlier, warehouses were typically built on the fringes of cities. This resulted in significant downtime because delivery took at least an hour or more to go from the warehouse to the customer's door. However, now companies are relocating warehouses to shorten the distance between deliverables and end customers to facilitate speedier delivery. As a result, delivery companies are forming partnerships with local stores to deliver goods to clients directly. Hence, hybrid stores that serve as both a convenience store and an inventory warehouse have risen in popularity to simplify deliveries and decrease downtime.

Real-time tracking

Real-time item tracking will become a must-have feature for hyperlocal brands in the D2C landscape. Today, customers demand more transparency and clarity about their orders; therefore, businesses must enhance their technology to enable hyperlocal deliveries. Every consumer wants to know where their order is, who the delivery person is, and when they can expect it to arrive. As a result, smart logistics management technologies that automatically communicate the real-time tracking links to end customers are critical for the hyper-local brands to provide real-time order tracking for the customer. These tools also alert customers about the status of delivery, possible delays, and other exceptions.

Focus on data analytics

Data is the ultimate way to thrive in this digital ecosystem. The more data you have about the customers, the more personalised offers you can provide to the right customer at the right time. However, simply collecting and analysing data is meaningless if you do not have ideas on how to use the resulting insights. This is where data analytics comes into the picture. Brands can use data analytics insights to track their consumers' buying behaviour or examine how they interact with the brand to understand their demands better. The brands can leverage AI and ML to offer more personalised recommendations, which will help the brand to maintain a competitive advantage, and improve conversion rates, customer experience and retention.

Conclusion

Hyperlocal brands in D2C are seen to offer customers the best of both virtual and real worlds. The concept has taken off because of the benefits and convenience. However, it is crucial to note that enforcing a seamless hyper-local service without an intelligent technology platform is an uphill battle. Thus, hyper-local brands must embrace the newest AI, machine learning, and data analytics technologies to ensure success. Furthermore, automation is the key to expediting manual operations and nailing on-demand deliveries within the designated time period.