I recently spoke with Vijay Ramachandran, VP, Go-To-Market Experience at Pitney Bowes on the Small Business Edge’s “5 in Five” podcast. We discussed market trends and insights, more cost-effective ecommerce operations, and better customer experiences. Vijay also shared results from PB’s BOXpoll survey responses from their shipping customers. Below are excerpts from our podcast.
Brian Moran: What are some key market trends and insights that you've learned over the past two years and what has been most surprising to you?
Vijay Ramachandran: There is significant growth in pure enjoyment that consumers express in shopping online that didn't exist to this degree before the pandemic. Today, it's a more natural, enjoyable experience. Ecommerce has gone from a convenience to being a source of joy, which is a fundamental shift in the way we think.
Brian: What are the important aspects of ecommerce logistics that companies should focus on to improve operations?
Vijay: For most brands, if you've got a differentiated product, you don't have to spend an arm and a leg on the shipping and logistics. If you don't have a differentiated product, you’re selling a commodity. What you then compete on is experience and the convenience of purchasing your product. That's your differentiation--It's either the product or it's the way you buy the product.
Brian: What advice would you give to companies about shipping for the upcoming holiday season.
Vijay: There is a bullwhip effect happening in supply chain. Companies ordered a lot of inventory going into peak season last year, much of which didn't show up until the early part of this year. Those companies are now stuck with last year’s merchandise. They should create demand for the product to free up space, increase cash flow, and get ready for this year’s holiday season.
Brian: Thanks Vijay for your insights and advice.