Online shoppers still want more when it comes to delivery
AlixPartners LLP, a supply chain consulting firm, recently surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers on the topic of ecommerce delivery expectations. Overall, the results show an increased demand for faster deliveries, and of course, for less money, a common theme in the ecommerce delivery market: more for less. Back in 2012, online shoppers expected to wait an average of 5.5 days for the delivery of their purchases. According to the new results, that number has dropped to 4.8 days over the past four years. Patience for retailers who are unable to get consumers their products within five days is also running out. In 2012, 74% of respondents said they would be willing to wait more than five days for an online purchase, however that number is down to 60% this year. That being said, over half of the respondents have never used the same day delivery option. Now if a retailer were to offer this service for free, the proportion of buyers utilizing that service would certainly increase.
When looking for a stimulant for these growing expectations, Marc Iampieri, director of supply chain practice at AlixPartners, notes the role giant retailers such as Wal-Mart and Amazon have had on this space. The expansive product offerings and speedy delivery services have certainly put pressure on the smaller ecommerce businesses.
Read more on these interesting survey results here.
Welcome to the wild, wild West of drone use
As the proliferation of drone use continues, it is becoming more evident that regulations, or the lack thereof, must be clarified. Currently, there are no international rules in place that govern the use of drones. In fact, drone regulation within a single country can even vary. A recent incident on the Suez Canal has once again highlighted the need for some common legislation regarding the use of these unmanned aerial vehicles. A ship was detained this week by the Suez Canal Authority for launching a drone it was using to photograph its movements through the Canal. Egyptian authorities had the ship anchor, and confiscated the drone as well as the memory card. The vessel was further detained and Egyptian authorities conducted additional investigations.
The ship is a member of the Protection and Indemnity Insurance Club Gard, and the company has since warned its other members to proceed cautiously with drone use, especially when travelling in a country’s territorial waters.
Read more on this incident and the expansion of drone use at sea here.
Positive outlook for autonomous big-rigs
According to new forecasts produced by IHS Automotive, we can expect to share the road with 60,000 heavy-duty autonomous, or self-driving, trucks by the year 2035 in the United States. In total, IHS predicts there will be a total of 4.5 autonomous vehicles on U.S. roads in 2035. However, two enormous assumptions are made in this prediction by HIS forecasters. Firstly, and in my opinion most importantly, the technology must be adopted. Secondly, the technology must reach “appreciable levels” by the end of the next decade.
Further estimates indicate that 21 million vehicles with some form of autonomy will be sold worldwide in the year 2035. Leading up to that point, over the next 19 years, IHS predicts 76 million vehicles with some degree of autonomy will be sold. The organization believes the U.S. will be the first to adopt the technology and address challenges such as regulation, liability and consumer acceptance.
Read more on the autonomous vehicle market here.
Have a great weekend!