Technology has left nothing untouched in its march towards advancement – the way we work, study, communicate, and even idle! The pandemic that has gripped the world in recent times has only served to emphasize just how connected we can be without physical contact. The digital space has touched every aspect of our lives, including one of our oldest and most important institutions – the marketplace.
The Digital Marketplace
We can define a marketplace quite simply: a location where multiple parties gather to engage in trade. Traditionally, this has taken many forms; however, what they have in common is that there is one party that has something to offer, and the other party is interested in taking that offer.
When we talk about digital marketplaces, they can be of all sorts; a restaurant’s online takeaway, a grocery store’s e-commerce front, or a peer-to-peer open market like eBay, and more. One of the less obvious ones is what we’ll be talking about here: one for the logistics industry.
The Logistics Marketplace
The logistics business isn’t exactly the first to come to mind when one hears the word ‘marketplace’. It fits the bill, however: transporters offer the movement of goods, and customers of all kinds search for the best provider to fulfill their need.
Normally, the logistics business involves a lot of footwork and back-and-forth communication. Customers, business or otherwise, reach out to transporters and negotiate a price. Already, we’ve gone through several difficult steps; knowing the right transporter (or worse, having to find one) and knowing the market well enough to understand what a good negotiating point for the fare is. These steps are difficult enough for non-veterans of the field, but they are just the beginning.
Having a digital marketplace, however, makes it all much smoother and easier.
A Digital Logistics Landscape
As our society becomes more and more ‘in-tune’ with online services, partially spurred on by the pandemic forcing us all to stay indoors, the advantages of digital systems become clearer. Converting the process of contracting a logistics partner to a digital has many such benefits, including, but not limited to:
-Instant and easy access: With smartphone accessibility leading to ubiquitous internet connectivity, anyone can access a system from anywhere and at any time and can expect a prompt response and immediate processing.
-Single point of access and contact: A digital system can save one from having to wander a city looking for and visiting offices, or from making tons of phone calls. Any and all available transporters are accessible from within the system itself, so all a customer would have to do is access the website or app, and they are instantly connected to potentially hundreds of transporters who are willing and able to take on their order. Further communication can also be managed by the platform itself.
-Fare control: Digital systems put the power back in the hands of the customer. Because the process of finding a reliable transporter is so much easier, and likewise the capturing of customers for a transporter is easier, both parties can be far more flexible in their pricing. In addition, the customer could, potentially, be simultaneously gathering quotations from multiple parties, ensuring that the fulfillment of their requirements is the only real consideration they need to make when picking a transporter.
-Paperless environment: In a full digital system, everything is tracked and stored. Any party can access any kind of history or statistic regarding any order or communication at any time without having to muddle with any kind of physical storage medium. It’s environmentally great, too!
It’s easy to wonder why someone hasn’t simply stepped in and taken the throne by creating such a system, but we must remember that the only way to ensure effectiveness is to have an understanding of the marketplace’s ‘buyers and sellers’, their needs and problems, and overall industry dynamics and standards. In other words, existing and experienced market players with the technology background are in the best position to show the way to the rest of the industry. One example of such a system is Wahyd Marketplace. Wahyd Marketplace is a fully digital solution created by Wahyd R&D, a player that is uniquely positioned where they have in-depth understanding of both logistics and technology. Leveraging its operational experience with a fully running conventional setup, Wahyd has ensured that the Marketplace they have developed is an all-inclusive, end-to-end solution that serves as an example for the rest of the industry.
Marketplace developed by the likes of Wahyd Logistics are the only real way forward for the industry; and when the logistics industry is strong and up-to-date, the effects are immediately visible on the entire economy. The logistics marketplace can easily become a standard and example for others to follow.