As the eCommerce market continues to grow at an exponential rate, so too does the demand for faster and more efficient ways of working. One way that many companies are beginning to address this issue is through the use of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) software.

Grand View Research predicts that the global eCommerce market will be valued at USD 9.09 trillion by 2019, and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.7% from 2020 to 2027. This rapid growth is likely to result in an even greater demand for RPA solutions that can help companies to automate their workflows and scale up their operations without the need for additional employees.

In this article, we will explore 7 ways in which RPA can benefit eCommerce companies.

How Robotic Process Automation can help e-commerce companies?

Black and Gray Laptop Computer With Turned-on Screen Beside Person Holding Red Smart Card in Selective-focus Photography

With heightened customer expectations and the competitive landscape of eCommerce,  businesses are looking for ways to scale up their operations quickly, efficiently, and affordably. 

RPA can provide the perfect solution for managing increased data loads, automating repetitive tasks, and improving customer service response times. Data plays a vital role in eCommerce success and with the right tools in place, businesses can turn this data into actionable insights to improve their operations.

For instance, RPA can provide numerous benefits for eCommerce businesses including:

  •  Increased operational efficiency
  • Enhanced data management capabilities
  • Improved decision-making ability
  • Increased compliance with industry regulations
  • Cost savings

RPA in eCommerce: 12 USE CASES

RPA in eCommerce has a wide range of potential applications. Here are 12 ways in which RPA could be used to improve efficiency and effectiveness in eCommerce operations:

Customer service

 In a Microsoft survey, 96% of respondents said that they take the quality of customer service into account when making purchasing decisions. Furthermore, 54% of consumers reported having higher expectations for customer service than they did the year before.

State of Global Customer Service Report 2017

E-commerce companies that focus on customer retention strategies typically see higher profits than those that do not. By being attentive to customer service and creating a positive customer experience, you can keep your customers coming back for more.

There are many ways to provide excellent customer service, but one of the most important is to keep them informed about the status of their purchase. If there are any issues, you should also be quick to resolve them. By doing so, you create loyalty among your customer base that is difficult to come by.

RPA can be used to automate:

  • Establishing contact,
  • tracking and passing information to consumers,
  • lowering Average Handle Time in an e-commerce call center,
  • increasing the percentage of First Call Resolutions (FCR),
  • and enhancing review management.

It may also be utilized to expand customer experience by automating loyalty programs.

Content creation and management

Product descriptions, package inserts, marketing collateral – all these have to be created and managed. The larger the company and the more products they offer, the higher the amount of content that needs to be produced. In order to speed up the process while maintaining high-quality standards e-commerce companies can use RPA software for:

  • text analysis and generation,
  • content standardization,
  • data entry,
  • content review and approval process management.

Order management

By 2022, e-commerce is slated to bring in one trillion dollars. If retailers want a piece of that pie, they need to have quick and streamlined order processing.

Receiving, processing and shipping orders quickly is crucial for eCommerce businesses. Customer satisfaction depends on it to a great extent – they want to know when their order will be delivered and they want to track it. Delays in any of these processes can result in customers taking their business elsewhere. Efficient order management requires manual intervention only in specific cases – the rest should be automated. RPA software can take over such tasks as:

  • order entry,
  • order confirmation,
  • order tracking,
  • order cancellation.

Product categorization

Product categorization is one of the most important processes in e-commerce. Properly assigned product categories allow for easy and fast navigation on websites and also affect search engine rankings. The process is prone to human error as it requires not only in-depth knowledge of products but also an understanding of how customers are looking for them online. To reduce the risk of errors and streamline the process, e-commerce companies can use RPA software for:

  • product data scraping from various sources,
  • automatic assignment of products to categories,
  • regular review, and update of product categorization.

Automated marketing

Generating leads and converting them into customers is the primary goal of marketing departments in e-commerce companies. To do that they use various tools, such as email marketing, social media campaigns, SMS campaigns, etc. The process can be quite time-consuming, as it requires not only the creation and design of marketing materials but also their distribution and follow-up. Automation can help eCommerce businesses with:

  • email marketing,
  • social media campaigns,
  • SMS campaigns,
  • lead nurturing.

Inventory management

Out-of-stock situations result in frustrated customers and lost sales. On the other hand, keeping too much inventory ties up working capital that could be better used elsewhere. To strike the perfect balance between these two extremes, eCommerce businesses need to have a well-oiled inventory management process in place. RPA software can automate such tasks as:

  • product data entry,
  • product data scraping,
  • order processing,
  • stock level monitoring.

Fraud detection

E-commerce companies are constantly fighting fraudsters who are trying to use stolen credit card information or hacked accounts to make purchases. To protect themselves and their customers, they need to have a robust fraud detection process in place. RPA software can help with that by:

  • monitoring customer behavior,
  • detecting suspicious activity,
  • blocking fraudulent transactions.

Return processing

Returns are a fact of life in e-commerce. Some businesses see them as an opportunity to build customer loyalty, while others view them as a necessary evil. Either way, returns need to be processed quickly and efficiently in order to minimize the impact on the business. RPA software can automate such tasks as:

  • order entry,
  • order cancellation,
  • product data entry,
  • return label generation.

Advanced sales analytics

In order to make informed decisions about pricing, promotions, product mix, etc., e-commerce businesses need to have access to sales data. This data is often spread out across different systems and departments, which makes it hard to get a clear picture of what’s happening. RPA software can help by:

  • collecting data from various sources,
  • normalizing the data,
  • loading it into a centralized repository,
  • generating reports and dashboards.

Pricing management

In order to stay competitive, e-commerce companies have to regularly review their prices and offer discounts or promotions when needed. The process is time-consuming and requires close cooperation between different departments in a company. RPA in eCommerce software can be used to:

  • gather pricing data from various sources,
  • compare prices with competitors,
  • adjust prices accordingly,
  • communicate price changes to customers.