The e-commerce sector is experiencing massive growth. Online businesses have been gearing themselves up to meet the ever-changing demands of customers. Logistics provider DHL has recently set up an e-commerce warehouse in Germany. 

The company released its 2024 E-tailers’ Almanac – which gives online merchants insight into what’s happening in the e-commerce industry. 

E-commerce industry remains strong 

“Despite cautious consumer spending because of rising prices, e-commerce remains strong with an expected low to mid-single-digit growth in 2024,” the statement by DHL says. It adds that the peak holiday shopping season signifies increased consumer confidence in purchasing low-cost items. 

In the e-commerce industry, we see companies taking the initiative to make life easier for customers. In the US, in collaboration with SmartKargo, Delta Cargo has launched DeliverDirect for e-commerce. This is a door-to-door delivery service for customers in the US. The new offering is ideal for retailers looking to optimize their direct-to-customer shipping. 

Online businesses use data to know more about their customer’s audience and ensure brand loyalty. Most importantly, the data will allow e-commerce professionals to boost online sales. Inc.com points out, “data is the one thing no e-commerce entrepreneur should try to do without.”

Also Read: Metaverse e-commerce: The projected future of virtual shopping 

Logistics companies: stronger than ever 

DHL highlights there is an emphasis on greater speed and quality. “2023 was marked for online merchants as a year with cost, reliability, and speed as the top three priorities. However, there is a noticeable shift occurring where quality and speed are gaining prominence over cost.  This shift can be attributed to online merchants looking to expand their businesses this year and their increased focus on time-definite delivery options.” 

In the UK, businesses have realized the importance of speed. Paris-based logistics platform business Stuart is partnering with integration provider UrbanPiper to help restaurants in the UK, Ireland, and Europe with delivery.

Humans are still important 

Artificial intelligence (AI) has made its presence known in e-commerce. But DHL says humans are still important. “In a world in which artificial intelligence is implemented to improve customer service response rates, agent productivity, and ticket management, chatbots for consumer queries are becoming more sophisticated, helping to predict consumer needs and helping with simple requests. 

DHL adds that when surveyed, lightweight parcel e-tailers in the U.S. still prefer a personal human customer experience to help resolve their logistics and transport queries.

A report by The Economist and DP World titled Trade in Transition 2024 points out that AI is transforming supply chains. In a survey conducted, 45.1% of respondents reported integrating AI technologies into their supply chain in 2023, while an additional 26.7% reported using it already.

Lee Spratt, CEO, DHL eCommerce, Americas, says: “As the E-tailers’ Almanac enters its fifth year, we have seen that it has captured the pulse of some long-term and short-term trends, but overall, this year, DHL eCommerce continues to see the resiliency of the industry and growth opportunities, despite global and economic concerns.” 

Now Read: Delivery Management and e-commerce go hand-in-hand

About the author

Sharl is a qualified journalist. He has over 10 years’ experience in the media industry, including positions as an editor of a magazine and Business Editor of a daily newspaper. Sharl also has experience in logistics specifically operations, where he worked with global food aid organisations distributing food into Africa. Sharl enjoys writing business stories and human interest pieces.