Ann Marie Puig


Ann Marie Puig discusses how eCommerce has changed the way shoppers shop

Globally, buying habits and user preferences have changed rapidly over the past decade and a high percentage of consumers now shop online. eCommerce generates a high demand for delivery services and this makes carrying the logistics of each trade more difficult and complex. We are no longer in the times when a fast service was what was most considered; recent statistics show that a good shipping experience is more important than ever. This is just one of the ways eCommerce is changing and Ann Marie Puig, an entrepreneur and philanthropist from Costa Rica, offers expert insight into how eCommerce is changing the way consumers make their purchase decisions and how logistics are more important than ever.

The evolution of logistics has passed through different general phases until we reach what we know today. In the 1970s, there was replenishment of retail stores through direct deliveries from suppliers or wholesalers. In the 1980s, retailers began centralizing deliveries through new distribution centers. In the following decade, global supply, mostly for non-food products, begins to take off and many retailers develop import centers. Starting in 2000, eCommerce began to expand at high speed leading the way in establishing electronic compliance distribution networks.

With the rise of eCommerce over the past 20 years, user preferences have become increasingly important in the package delivery market. Explains Puig, “Last-mile services have now been identified as a key differentiator in any eCommerce. In fact, the variety of delivery options and the perceived quality of service are the main decision-making criteria for users and therefore directly affect the success of the trade.”

With this in mind, suppliers are constantly working to deliver the best possible user experience, especially by improving shipping times. In any case, the trend indicates that day delivery or even instantaneous delivery will continue to increase to 25% by 2025 and is likely to grow further, especially if the service extends to rural areas.

Pushed by changes in user preferences, three delivery models are imposed that will dominate the last mile in the near future: autonomous cars with parcel lockers, bike messengers and drones. The implementation of these models will vary depending on public opinion, regulation and labor costs. However, the first places to adopt them will be concentrated in developed countries, where labor costs are high enough for significant return on investment.

Regulation will have to undergo a substantial change (especially in relation to liability for damage caused by self-driving cars), but it is anticipated that these will be overcome in the next ten years. At the same time, public opinion has already begun to change; therefore, there is nothing to suggest that transformation will not begin in the next decade.

Statistics show that users are spending quality time on their mobile devices and also making purchases through them. That’s why brands will put their best efforts into creating targeted marketing strategies on mobile devices. Once this transformation has occurred, new strategies will be created to buy through the Internet of Things (IoT). This will, then, be facilitated by the introduction of something else. 5G has three possibilities for improvements that will occur over these five years: improving broadband, reducing latency periods, and expanding connectivity. The arrival of 6G will increase the capacity of the relationship between objects and people. This is when the automation process will accelerate and change the way we consume data. Rates are achieved at up to 1000 tbps.

And it’s not about being the fastest anymore, either. It’s also about being able to deliver an order within the time and price that customers want and need. “A negative shipping experience has and will have a big impact,” asserts Puig. “It will drastically affect the brand image, customer loyalty and being able to increase costs.”