Revolutionising India’s Retail Landscape Through Automation

automation is reshaping the retail industry

The lockdown brought about significant challenges for brick-and-mortar stores, while online retail experienced a surge in growth. From buying groceries to shopping for food and clothing, these internet-based shops have gained popularity and improved consumers’ lives.

As the pandemic has eased, things have slowly returned to normal. The offline retail sector is also recovering. One notable factor during this period has been the increasing use of ‘technology.’

Technology has played a crucial role in helping retailers enhance their efficiency and effectiveness. The use of AI and automated retail solutions has rapidly gained traction.

What’s Happening?

Automation is causing notable shifts in the retail sector. These changes are not only moving the industry forward but also enabling it to address challenges effectively. By incorporating moderate levels of automation in physical stores, administrative offices, and warehouses, retailers can now observe and respond to evolving consumer habits.

If we look at India’s retail domain, it stands out as one of the world’s most promising and expanding markets. As per an IBEF report, around 60 shopping malls, spanning a total retail area of 23.25 million square feet, are anticipated to commence operations between 2023 and 2025. This growth isn’t limited to major cities and metros; smaller towns are also experiencing rapid expansion. Factors such as robust economic progress, shifting demographics, increased disposable income, urbanisation, and evolving consumer preferences drive the expansion of the organised retail sector. Now, automation has the potential to emerge as another pivotal catalyst for the industry’s progress.

Impacts and Advantages of Automation

Implementing automation within India’s retail sector can enhance operational efficiency by simplifying various tasks such as managing inventory, fulfilling orders, and analysing data. This, in turn, will lead to a reduction in human errors and an overall boost in productivity.

Furthermore, the manual processing of invoices often proves to be challenging and time-intensive. The integration of automation tools can speed up this procedure. Additionally, automation enhances the efficiency of supply chain operations, ensuring timely deliveries and improving inventory turnover while lowering holding costs.

Using chatbots and personalised emails empowers retailers to customise their offerings for customers. Automation tools can provide valuable recommendations by studying purchasing behaviour, preferences, and past transactions. As a result, the overall shopping experience will become stronger.

Challenges of Automation

While automation undoubtedly enhances efficiency, it can also bring about shifts in job roles. Retailers will need to concentrate on enhancing the skills of their workforce to manage more strategic and creative responsibilities.

Furthermore, it is crucial to consider data security and cybersecurity to prevent any adverse impacts from implementing automation.

What’s Next?

Based on Kearney Research, India’s retail sector is projected to experience a growth rate of 9% from 2019 to 2030, reaching a value of US$ 1,407 billion by 2026 and exceeding US$ 1.8 trillion by 2030.

Regarding automation, as per the Economic Times, robotic process automation (RPA) technology has emerged as a significant tool. Automation is poised to become a valuable resource for retailers aiming to stay competitive in the face of rising labour expenses and intensifying market competition. The prevailing pattern also indicates that ‘automation’ is on the brink of becoming an essential aspect of India’s retail landscape in the near future.

That’s it for today. We hope you’ve found this article informative. Remember to spread the word among your friends. Until we meet again, stay curious!

*The article is for information purposes only. This is not an investment advice.

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