With Deepavali this weekend, holiday season has already ushered in. And as a special gift we have launched badges to show some rightfully-due recognition to our regular contributors. Look out for the “blue pencil” icon next to the byline to identify our regular contributors.

In keeping with the holiday season, our contributors have shared some great views on how the e-commerce and logistics can cope up with the surge in demands. Then there is more on crafting OKRs (end of the year and quarter is the best time for that) and the future of the VC investing model.

If you are reflecting on the year gone by, share your opinions and earn a byline by submitting a post. For some brain juice, read on!

E-commerce in holiday season

How to turn product returns into returning customers this holiday season by David Stock, Vice President of Marketing for UPS in the Asia

“Until the day we have holographic projectors in our lounge rooms, one of the best ways to close this experience gap is actually deceptively simple: product returns. Returns are often an afterthought for businesses, but they shouldn’t be.

But outside of the statistics, the truth is that well-orchestrated returns have the capacity to close the experience gap with the brick-and-mortar retail experience, by allowing the customer to receive their product, experience it “in person”, and if it’s not suitable, to send it back to the merchant.

It’s roughly the equivalent of a customer in a shop picking up a product, trying it on, and then putting it back on the rack. However, robust e-commerce returns require more than just a return address on your website.

Are merchants ready for an all-digital 2020 holiday season? by Tristan Chiappini, VP, APAC at PPRO

“The seasonal rush has officially begun. Last month 10.10 kicked things off in APAC and many of us recently browsed the sales on Amazon Prime Day. But merchants cannot be complacent. There is a flurry of seasonal sales coming on the horizon both toward the end of the year and into 2021.

But the opportunity that is still there to be captured by ambitious merchants this festive season and merchants across sectors should ensure they are prepared to capture their slice of the market.”

Money and tech

Why fintechs and banks have a bright future together by Andrea Baronchelli, Co-Founder and CEO at Aspire

“It’s safe to say that the pandemic disrupted many day-to-day processes—including financial services. As people were now relegated to their homes, financial institutions scrambled to find innovative digital solutions for their products.

Small and nimble, fintech has infiltrated the financial processes of many consumers. fintech platforms have joined the financial service foray by optimising financial services.”

Lessons from the buy-now-pay-later boom by Elizabeth Barry, global fintech journalist

“BNPL can be thought of as a new type of credit. Acting as an intermediary, the BNPL companies allow consumers to make purchases with a retailer and then pay it off in instalments.

There are some differences between these instalment plans, but generally, the purchase is spread evenly across three or four instalments, with the funds being debited from the customer’s account.”

Will China lead the Artificial Intelligence game by 2030? by Top 25 Global sHero Award Winner 2020 (Shanghai), Elise Quevedo

“The plan signals China’s desire to lead an area that is growing rapidly. With the intention of securing this first position, the government will invest to ensure that its companies, government, and military sector jump to the front of the field of artificial intelligence.

To do so, they will support moonshot projects, used by Google to solve problems, startups, and academic research with the aim of increasing the success of AI development.”

From the investor world

The future VC will be a hybrid between accelerator and incubator. Here’s why by Anu Shah, tech entrepreneur and former Rocket Internet CEO

“The search for deals is now more focused on employment generation, inclusivity, innovation, and cures.  And there is a dearth of deal supply in this space.

In hope of scoring that elusive home run again, many VCs have taken a more innovative approach and started their in-house “accelerators”.  Traditionally, accelerators help entrepreneurs take their idea and turn them into an investment-worthy business.”

Busting the 5 popular myths surrounding startup exits by Sergei Filippov, Managing Partner at Morphosis Capital Partners.

“VCs may successfully exit the startup but the founders may be left with unbearable market growth expectations, pumped up by the bloated valuation. The founder may be happy with the deal that keeps his/her operational independence but shareholders’ return may be low and delayed. Let’s look at the five popular myths surrounding ‘exits’.”

For the founder in you

Blake Irving, former CEO of GoDaddy, shares his startup way of running a public company by Billy Yuen, Founder of Stacktrek

“When I took the role, GoDaddy wasn’t perceived as a technological company. It was perceived primarily as a marketing company. My goal coming in was actually build a technical platform that small businesses could use globally and I think the challenge came from executing that plan.

I had to pivot the company in the direction and hire employees that were good engineers. To do that, I had to open offices in various cities in the US and we also opened ‘customer cares’.”

How to use OKRs to avoid startup failures by Senthil Rajagopalan, COO at Profit.co

“Finding the product/market fit is famously considered as an exercise in serendipity by many, but it doesn’t have to be. A startup can define hypotheses and test them through iterative business execution.

The following key principles of OKRs will be relevant for finding the product/market fit”.

Editor’s note: e27 aims to foster thought leadership by publishing contributions from the community. Become a thought leader in the community and share your opinions or ideas and earn a byline by submitting a post.

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The post From our community: Former CEO of GoDaddy on starting out, customer rentention by UPS’ marketing guru and more… appeared first on e27.

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