Over the years, the reputation of delivery and logistics services has been very unenviable. Many packages were lost or delayed. Many customers were annoyed and made fun of the slow delivery services around the world.
Only a few people knew the challenges these services face in their work, and especially on the last mile. Poor route planning, traffic jams, confusion in overloaded warehouses, and congestion are just some of the problems.
Big Data was born when the stigma seemed to be a permanent fixture. It was paired with software and special technologies that brought about many positive changes in the logistics industry.
What is big data and how does it impact logistics? Let’s get to it and discover the following:
- The definition of Big Data and its main characteristics.
- Big Data and logistics: The benefits
- Big Data’s impact on the logistics industry
Understanding Big Data
Here’s a little backstory. Information flow has increased steadily since the middle of the 20th century when the digital age began. It rose significantly by the 1980s when the Internet was invented. The term Big Data was created to describe this phenomenon. It stands for huge amounts of information that are created on the Internet.
Big Data’s Major Characteristics
We can basically characterize big data with four V-words
Only when the data is terabytes of size or more, can we call it big. The first thing that distinguishes big data is the size of the data packages.
This metric measures the speed at which data is generated. Google is the only company that receives around 60000 queries per second. Social media platforms also produce a lot of data.
Big data also has the advantage of allowing for a wide range of information. Data can be divided into three main categories: semi-structured, structured, or unstructured. All three types of data are included in big data. Structured data includes video and audio files, images, text, and other information.
The qualitative characteristics of data are last but not least. The stream of information gets more fragmented. Data processing becomes more difficult and requires more complex techniques. This is an important factor for all businesses, not just the logistics industry.
Also read: The Benefits and Importance of Big data
Benefits of Big Data Implementation
The potential of big data is as wide as its name. An accurate analysis can add much value to your company and allow you to:
Streamline Business Operations
Big data can make your business more efficient. You can quickly eliminate problems by quickly analyzing key metrics and identifying pain points. You can also use big data to create efficient business strategies.
It’s often difficult to manage without the right technology and software tools. A must-have for any business is BI tools such as PowerBI dashboards. These dashboards display important performance data in real-time in a concise and easy-to-understand format of charts, graphs, etc. It can be combined with IoT, GPS, or other tools to show incomes and even the health status of your employees, if desired.
Optimize your costs
Businesses can reduce expenses by using big data analysis. The analytical report can help you track which product returns are more frequent. This information can be used to modify or replace your product, saving you money on returns.
Set Competitive Prices
Price formation is made easier by taking into consideration the prices of your products and services in the marketplace. Big data analysis is a great way to do this. Buyers are attracted to reasonable and affordable prices. As your brand becomes more well-known, you can raise prices.
Stay Aware of Trends
Big data analytics tools can extract valuable information from social media and provide valuable insights. People’s feelings are key to any successful marketing campaign. It will show the industry what consumers want more than any other marketing campaign. The customer wins if they get to know the customer better and respond faster.
Avoid Unexpected Events and Risks
big data can also be useful for risk management. You can make it easier to reach your long-held goals by collecting data about similar businesses and projects, as well as their failures. The statistics you can obtain from such information are similar to a playthrough. This information will help you to know where to go to get the right tools or change your direction to avoid booby traps. A map of the playground will eventually give you confidence and unrivaled advantages over your predecessors.
Enhance Customer Relations
This is also true for social media and the insights they provide. You can improve customer satisfaction with the special tools for big data transport and analysis. These software and frameworks allow you to deliver analytics based upon customer comments, interests points, or any other sources. To build strong, long-lasting relationships with customers, it is important to be aware of their problems and wishes. A reminder: Business managers can measure customer loyalty using currencies.
Impact of Big Data on the Logistic Industry
Now that all the pros of big data are out of the way, the next question is: What happens when you combine big data with delivery service? You get a highly successful delivery service. Due to the immense impact of big data analysis across multiple domains, the formula Big Data + Delivery service = High-flier works. Here are some examples.
Exceptional Customer Experience
In any field that uses big data, customer relations will be a key component. A broad view of customer preferences is a great way to target customers and adapt to their needs. You can optimize your delivery schedule by analyzing the information customers post in the public domain. You can, for example, analyze information from your TA’s social networks. This will allow you to determine when they are at home and when they are out jogging. It also works well with personalization. You can express your gratitude by conducting a thorough analysis of support queries and sentiments.
Last-Mile Delivery Enhancement
Delivery’s last-mile proved to be the most difficult. These include traffic jams, parking shortages, and addressee absence. Tools of big data can help with most of these issues. Software that connects to GPS and IoT sensors can find parking spots and the best routes for your vehicle. This software can help you reduce your gas costs and ensure that you deliver your product on time.
You can create an app, or other tools for real-time tracking, to notify customers about incoming deliveries.
Improved Safety of the Goods
Each delivery service must protect sensitive goods from harm. Their reputation and survival are at risk. This challenge was also exacerbated by the massive impact of big data.
This information will allow you to avoid future safe delivery problems by providing details about past failures and their causes as well as the behavior patterns of employees. It is possible to determine that your staff needs better organization or special equipment. Nevertheless, big data will help you quickly spot the problem.
Better Warehouse Management
Warehouse management is made easier and more efficient by big data tools. Old ERP systems are retiring and packing up their APIs. New tools provide enormous benefits for both customers and managers.
Big data tools can provide managers with the information they need:
Managers can better plan their deliveries by having a clear understanding of the warehouse load.
Advanced space control and route planning can help streamline warehouse management and save time and money.
Preservation of goods
Managers can control the warehouse space and be aware of incoming goods to identify suitable dispatching areas. It also makes inventory management easier.
Customers can see the availability of your product on your website. They can also get information about the shipping and manufacturing process.
The use of big data tools in conjunction with GPS devices on each delivery vehicle allows for greater transparency during the shipment process. This is an important part of the B2B relationship. This is because delays in delivery can cause significant financial losses for businesses. Your partner will be able to track logistics delivery in real-time, so he/she can immediately identify any problems. Their quick response will save you money and make you a better business partner.
The phenomenon of big data refers to the huge amount of information generated by people over a long period of time. It alters many spheres of human activity including delivery services and supply chain management. Humans are resourceful and never stop creating software and technologies to manage big data and extract maximum value. As such, logistic transformation is occurring in these areas as technology increases:
- Relations with customers
- Warehouse management
- Transparency and reliability
- Seamless last-mile delivery,
- The safety of the delivered goods
Positive changes in these spheres will lead to business expansion and financial success. It is better to implement big data tools early in your logistics business. You never know, you might be remembered for your contribution to the development of the logistic industry.