Promising Future for E-Commerce in India

Online shopping may be a relatively untouched sector so far in India but it has been growing with an enviable pace since last couple of years. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) in its recent survey has revealed that more and more Indian consumers are now opting to do their shopping of groceries and valuables including jewellery through online medias.
ASSOCHAM, India’s premier apex chamber of industries and commerce covering a membership of over 4 lakh companies and professionals across the country, has conducted the survey in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Ahemdabad and Kolkata in this regard and as per feedback received from 3,500 traders & organized retailers, the shopping trend during 2013 has witnessed a substantial upward movement thanks to aggressive online discounts, rising fuel prices and wider and abundant choice offered by the online websites. Findings of the survey show a record growth of 85% in online trends over the usual shopping than last year (65%).
According to data made available by the governmental sources, India has internet base of about 150 million as of August, 2013. Having close to 10% of internet penetration in India throws a very big opportunity for online retailers to grow and expand and if the growth is sustained, India is expected to overtake the U.S. to become the second largest country in number of internet users. The data also reveals that three out of every five internet users in India prefer to do shopping online. This has made India, one of the most worthwhile markets for global e-commerce giants.
While data provided by eBay India reveals that a jewellery set is sold every 31 minutes through its network. eBay displays over 37,000 live listings of jewellery items ranging from big brands to micro-entrepreneurs. Loose diamonds are sold more briskly at every 10 minutes, gold coins and simple gold jewellery move faster online than elaborate gold jewellery, it says.
In a gold crazy country like India, surely, there are abundant opportunities in the segment of the jewellery market for a player to come in and develop a branded product that could be sold online, at more competitive price tags. Although e-commerce is still at an emerging stage in India, online portals offering jewellery are likely to break even faster than other categories, feel the industry leaders here.
The Secretary General of ASSOCHAM Mr. D.S. Rawat says, “India’s e-commerce market which was worth USD 2.5 billion in 2009 has gone up by USD 6.3 billion in 2011 and to $16 billion in 2013. This is expected to touch massive size of USD 56 billion by 2023 which would be 6.5% of the total retail market of the country. The reasons behind online shoppers number proliferating are factors such as home delivery which saves time; 24 hours shopping facility and availability of product comparisons.”
Apart from big players like Flipkart and Amazon, many small companies have also launched online showrooms for group buying which enable customers to buy goods at a discounted price so long as a certain number of people make the purchases. Inspired by this trend, more companies are teaming up with such daily deal and discount sites. Retailers like Shoppers Stop, Westside and Pantaloons are also keen for the online shopping space for growth.
Some of the products purchased and sold off through online medias include Gift articles-58%, books-42%, electronics-41%, railway tickets-39%, accessories apparel-36%, apparel-36%, jewellery-15%, beauty products-12%, health and fitness products-12% etc. adds the survey.
This business component is surely cost effective, easily reachable and profitable in many functional areas. Consumers and retail traders desire secured, simple and complete online shopping that would truly realize the range of power of the Internet. The year 2014 therefore looks more promising for the online industry in India.Posted by Suresh Chotai