Microsoft 365, Microsoft Power Automate, Microsoft Power BI

4 Mins Read

How Microsoft Power Tools ‘Power’ Ecommerce Companies to Success

Overview

In today’s environment, the e-commerce industry has become extremely competitive globally. At the same time, the industry is still ever-evolving, with the latest trends, technologies, and innovations always coming up. Thus, e-commerce companies must be continuously able to adapt to recent technologies and innovations to become more efficient and, at the same time, improve service quality and user experience.

In the same context, Microsoft Power platform tools can be extremely useful to help improve business service quality, user experience, operational efficiency, and the ability to make better business decisions. In this article, we explore ways in which E-commerce companies can leverage these tools:

1. Data Analysis with Microsoft Power Tools

Microsoft Power BI is useful in analyzing large datasets, integrating data into one platform as a common source of truth for the organization, and allowing users to use real-time data to uncover insights that can help e-commerce companies make better decisions in a real-time environment. Here are some use cases through which e-commerce companies can leverage this tool:

 

  1. Real-Time Sales and Online Clickstream Data During Sale Campaigns: In today’s e-commerce landscape, a particularly important aspect of e-commerce companies is running regular sales campaigns to attract consumers to the platform. This use case is applicable for campaign days typically attracting high-volume sales and influencing long-term customer retention. A good example is Alibaba’s monthly double-digit sales campaign, such as the 11.11 sales campaign every year. During such campaigns, sales teams often need real-time data to monitor campaign performance, including performance by product category, etc.Microsoft’s Power BI thus has an essential use case as a source of sales data and allows BI teams to assist sales teams in creating quick real-time dashboards to monitor sales and clickstream data in real-time. This use case allows these sales teams to quickly understand consumer behavior and make quick decisions, such as how to allocate voucher promotions to increase sales for certain categories on a given campaign day. Additionally, Power BI’s AI features, such as the insights feature, can prove extremely useful in providing quick real-time insights in such cases.
  2. Forecasting To Ensure Efficient Supply Chain: Another key aspect of the e-commerce industry is logistics. A huge value-add for user experience in the e-commerce sector is ensuring timely first-mile and last-mile (delivery to consumers) logistics performance. Forecasting models also need to consider various factors, including seasonality, consumer trends, etc., and Power BI’s predictive analytics tools can be extremely useful in this aspect.

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2. Automating Manual Processes with Microsoft Power Tools

Microsoft Power Automate allows users to automate repetitive tasks, especially those involving supply chain planning. This feature is extremely useful for e-commerce companies since many companies today strive towards better user experience and higher efficiency for more cost savings. Some examples of how Microsoft Power Automate can be used are:

  1. Order Processing: Integrating Power Automate with the e-commerce backend order platformscan allow e-commerce companies to automate order processing by providing sellers, buyers, and third-party logistics partners with accurate real-time notifications on order processing from payment to the final delivery of the order. This use case not only helps improve the consumer experience through real-time information but can also help companies optimize scheduling their logistics pickups and deliveries and optimizing their fleet to ensure maximum efficiency with minimal cost. A great advantage of using Power Automate is that it can seamlessly be integrated into a company’s existing order management systems.
  2. Invoice Processing and Contract Management: Additionally, e-commerce companies typically deal with multiple vendors, including logistics companies, vendors for warehouse infrastructure, and tech-related vendors. This aspect typically involves constant communication with stakeholders to negotiate contracts and align on invoices as well as proper documentation. Thus, Power Automate can effectively manage contracts and automate invoice documentation. To do this, companies can use Microsoft Syntex AI to automatically classify and organize contracts into a SharePoint library. It even uses OCR to scan PDFs, images, etc. A Microsoft Teams channel can also be created to have a single platform on which all stakeholders can be aligned. Here, stakeholders can manage and review contracts and invoices. This process can be done by attaching the SharePoint library to the Teams channel. Finally, Power Automate can be used to process the contracts identified by the Syntex model. Thus, a power Automate workflow can be created for this purpose where a contract/invoice status can be automatically changed based on classification by the Syntex model. In this way, Microsoft Power Tools provides an effective and holistic invoice and contract management solution.

3. Using Power Apps

Microsoft Power apps allow users to create new apps without extensive coding. This App can be extremely handy for e-commerce companies, significantly improving their customer engagement processes and, in turn, improving customer satisfaction. This feature is a key aspect on which e-commerce players compete today, and thus, using power apps can give companies a distinct advantage. Some examples of such use cases include:

  1. Creating Chatbots for Better and Cheaper Customer Service: A huge cost for several e-commerce companies today is spending on customer service infrastructure, including hiring manual agents. However, several of these processes can be automated using AI-based chatbots. Chatbots have several advantages over manual agents, such as cheaper 24/7 service, personalized service by collecting user-specific data, product recommendations, and cart recovery. Microsoft Power Virtual Agents is a tool that can quickly create chatbots without much coding required. Additionally, these chatbots can be directly managed and deployed from Microsoft Power apps.
  2. Customer Loyalty Apps: To improve customer experience, e-commerce companies often benefit from providing specialized reward systems, incentives, and loyalty programs to ensure healthy customer retention and engagement. These also allow e-commerce companies to build unique brand differentiation and provide a competitive advantage. Power apps can also create specialized internal apps to create loyalty programs, reward systems, and personalized shopping experiences.

4. Seamless Integration Across Tools

Finally, all the applications discussed above are not isolated but have synergies. For example, to ensure accurate sales data, there must be an integration between a company’s analytics system to provide real-time data and the order processing system. Thus, while there may be other individual solutions for each use case mentioned above, a key advantage of using the Microsoft Power Solution is that they can be very easily integrated. For example, to make real-time data from Power BI accessible to users across the company, Microsoft Teams allows users to add Power BI, thus empowering users to access real-time dashboards and data very easily from there. This crucial advantage makes Microsoft Power Tools a great add-on to any company’s business needs.

Conclusion

Thus, Microsoft power tools provide holistic and complete solutions to business needs in the e-commerce industry, and adopting these tools will allow e-commerce companies to emerge as winners over their competitors in this digital landscape.

 

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WRITTEN BY Rashi Mehrotra

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