Published on April 13, 2020

Freight transport in the e-commerce era

By Massimo Marciani, President FREIGHT LEADERS COUNCIL

E-commerce is a growing trend. According to the B2C eCommerce Observatory of the Politecnico di Milano, electronic commerce generated a worldwide turnover of 2.500 billion euro in 2018. China tops the list, followed by US and Europe. In Italy, the turnover reached 27.4 billion euro last year, marking a + 16% compared to the previous year. Such a trend strongly affects the perception of reality and is radically changing the customer experience as regards mobility, goods and products purchase. Emerging phenomena such as shared economy and disruptive logistics – arising from the e-commerce trend- ensure the consumers more advantageous purchasing conditions but, at the same time, encourage the overgrowth ofmicro-deliveries and fragmented shipments whose issues and high costs are seriously compromising the optimization process of supply chains. It is therefore essential to understand, manage and integrate the dynamics of e-commerce with a view to a sustainable development of cities. To keep up with increasing demand from e-commerce channels and meet the expectations of consumers in terms of reliability, accuracy and speed, organizations will need to increase the development and implementation of advanced supply chain and logistics processes. Purchase and delivery are perceived as an only buying process by consumers. Punctuality, traceability and quality of services heavily affect consumer’s choice and represent the key for companies to increase their output and overall satisfaction. In this sense, telematics is the enabling factor of innovation in this sector. Key factors based on the idea of “logistics as a service” will be route optimization, load digitalization, shared consumers infrastructures (stationary or mobile), low emission vehicles and smart infrastructures.

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