Changing Faces Of eCommerce: Technology & Business Models

eCommerce or eRetailing, is just getting more and more exciting with the advent of new technology which are smarter, lighter and advanced, to convert every experience closer to reality. Every platform today can boast one new feature, a new innovation and optimized technique to entice their shopper. The trick is to bridge the gap arising from the real life shopping, reduce the rejection on delivery and increase process efficiency.  While I was writing on Augmented reality & Social Commerce, in one of my posts, I considered them as a boon to the eCommerce, but as I started researching for new technology which could overcome the biggest challenge in the fashion category, in the eCommerce model, where the rejects after delivery is as high as 30%, purely because of the nature of the buying behavior & size match, I came across a cool technology and methodology, which is as hilarious as:

Technology : Webcam Measurements for Buying Clothes Online

Like any other Success story, the technology UPcload, also started through addressing the pain area after self actualization & returning the delivery of the online shopped cloth, by the founders, purely because of the mismatch of size. They found an opportunity and brought a solution through two years of effort, which is now spreading as a wildfire, with it’s originality & fabulous methodology of scanning the body online through a webcam & holding a CD. UPcload uses your webcam, and here is the clever part—a CD or DVD—and a whole load of image processing, to work out your exact measurements. You stand in front of your webcam, in reasonably tight-fitting clothes, holding the CD in front of your navel. The system takes your picture and then runs it through object recognition processing. Since the system knows how big a CD is, it can work out your relative body dimensions. This technology is here to bring the much required revolution while shopping for your fashion line merchandise.

The discussion with Asaf Moses, Founder of UPcload, was totally a visionary one, he is set to change the online shopping experience and has been very optimistic with the soft launch in Germany & set to open shops in US now. UPcload has started seeing it’s adaptability from various leading platform and he quotes “It means we can suggest clothing ideas to people that they may never have thought of before. The program is using your body shape to suggest genuinely new ideas to people rather than simply suggesting on the basis of your historic buying pattern. It is like having your best friend with you.”

Such, inventions, innovation & explorations would only, make the online shopping experience more exciting & realistic. This would strategically be very beneficial for fashionable clothing line, especially when it comes to experimentation of new trends, fads in the fashion line. With this technology we would see more and more people experimenting. Also, such technology would make certain lines more accessible & open to the broader market base, using body shape, it  would enable to see yourself with new trends & even more, going forward you could ask your friends  through social networking sites. This business model would work more or less in the similar way to PayPal for financial transaction; a user could actually create his or her profile through their site and save it online, and use measurement while shopping online.

Takes for eCommerce Industry

  • Measurement technology would change the online buying experience of the shopper and reduce the rejects 
  • Increase experimentation leading to move on perception on trends to trial, with the blend of social commerce, would only increase the market base by cross-Category  adaptation in the fashion apparel category.

Business Model: Orderwithme.com ‘s Changing sourcing Model

Success stories are always born from the opportunity of gaps, and so is another example, which was the winner of TechCrunch DISRUPT in Bejing, Orderwithme.com.

During the founder Jonathan’s  education days in China, he was fascinated with the cost arbitrage to US, he went on to set up a shop in United States, sourcing Bags & other accessories from china, soon he found himself sailing on the ugly side of the sail, not because of the cost, but the quantity. The question here is, do you have so many customers to exhaust your procurement, which soon would be a dead investment in terms of inventory. He found an opportunity, in the entire sail where he was not alone & there were many small retailers, which his new platform could cater too, in sourcing through group buying. This model is now the version 2.0 when compared with alibaba.com, which too is sourcing model from china.

Orderwithme.com, found opportunity in sourcing for all the small retailers in United States through group buying, hand picking goods for their customers, walk through the journey of procurement & selection, quality evaluation & many more attributes, making the sourcing site the most effective platform for it’s small customer & adding the flavor of personalization. The value in the model is creating a platform where various small retailers could queue the order for the bulk pick up from china, as like the founder, not everybody would be able to relinquish the quantity procured, even though you have the cost advantage.

The Learning from the model is their personalized touch which makes every customer of their feel of being in China and procuring goods, through Video, high definition pictures on the journey of purchasing and Account manager who liaison with their customers, understanding the requirement & taking care of the order.

You Could reach me on adarsh.pete@gmail.com or connect me linkedin

Takes for eCommerce Industry

  • Enhancing the online shopping experience with more digital aids like the high definition videos & pictures, which could bridge the decision making process of the real life
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  1. #1 by Ashok on December 15, 2011 - 3:59 PM

    Good post here. Very valid inputs, especially in the Indian e-commerce context. When the price wars in e-commerce companies peter out soon, it is this kind of service differentiation that’s going to separate the true players from also-rans. One company that I know that’s trying to do this earnestly in India is sportsnest.com

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