India’s online grocery market boasts of potential. Currently valued at a little over $1 billion, it is supposed to grow up to $3 billion to $5 billion in the next 3-4 years. Bigbasket, which is at the forefront of this e-grocery revolution, currently has operations in 25+ cities with over 15,000+ products on its platform.
Bigbasket has grown to a customer base of over 10 million in less than seven years. Upsizing procurement, maintenance, and transportation in such a short time frame requires decision-making capabilities far more substantial than human intuition. So, when Bigbasket decided to expand their horizons and broaden their reach all over the country, they decided to bring Locus on-board as their logistics intelligence partner.
Challenges Faced by Bigbasket
The biggest challenge that Bigbasket faced was to serve the customers in the time that has been promised to them. The perishable nature of the product also adds to Bigbasket’s complexities. The emergence of several players in the e-grocery market means that customer satisfaction is the only key distinguisher. The nature of the product means that the customer is highly dependent for fresh and timely deliveries, a lack of which can derail his or her day. A dissatisfied customer will easily switch to other players which has a direct impact on business and revenue.
Another issue that Bigbasket faced was the small window between the order and the delivery time. This means a very short planning time for shipments that is extremely difficult to manage using manual planning processes.
Tackling the challenges
To cope up with the challenges mentioned above, Bigbasket partnered with Locus, an AI-based decision-making platform in the supply chain. Locus helped Bigbasket in automating its route planning process and optimizing operations at each leg of its operations. Locus provided a comprehensive route optimization and tracking solution called Dispatcher, thereby enabling the riders to deliver more in less time.
Locus Dispatcher uses a proprietary geocoding engine to provide optimized and dynamic routes based on business parameters. It helps Bigbasket in reducing logistics costs and improving customer experience by creating comprehensive route plans that are data-driven and not intuition-based. Most orders of Bigbasket are routed such that customer SLAs and expectations are met.
“Locus provides us with automated route plans in no time that ensure that customers get their orders on their preferred time slots. It also suggests the best fleet combination after considering real-world constraints like traffic conditions and route restrictions. Another benefit for us has been the increase in vehicle space utilization which has resulted in reduced freight costs. With Locus, we can tell our consumers about the ETA of their deliveries, enhance the overall customer experience and maintain an SLA adherence of 99.5%.”
Head of Product & Design, Bigbasket
Locus creates dynamic clusters ensuring minimum overlap. It also suggests the best fleet combination to enhance the capacity utilization considering historical traffic data, weight & volumes parameters, customer time slot preference & other business constraints. Moreover, the solution also includes real-time re-routing and dynamic ETA calculations using an interactive and intuitive dashboard.
Live monitoring of entire operations helps in comparing planned routes against executed routes and inspecting the compliance rates. Reports for top management are generated based on this data. These reports help identify the top-performing and laggard business units and resources. The senior management can look at the performance based on various metrics on a custom dashboard and take further actions.
After including Locus in its operations, Bigbasket saw the following results:
- Digitization leading to the streamlining of processes.
- 99.5% SLA Adherence
- On-time delivery for 10 million+ customers
- Increased vehicle space utilization
- Increase in the average number of order deliveries per rider
The supply chain and its development is at the heart of any rapid expansion plans. New areas of operations also mean that there are no footsteps to follow and that human estimates are more likely to go awry. Extending services to new markets while sticking to on-time deliveries, and adhering to the SLAs of existing clients are challenges that require advanced technological solutions.
Bigbasket was able to scale up its operations without compromising on customer satisfaction with the help of a tech partner. As more and more businesses continue to grow, and operations become more complex, expect technology enablers like Locus to stand up and deliver for growing enterprises.