What Is eCommerce Anyway?
No, it’s not a buzz word, Electronic Commerce or in short EC are the activities that involve the transfer of information or funds and in a way link business-to-business, business -to-consumers, consumers-to-consumers for exchanging goods, products and services over the internet. As online media have a massive reach these days, so is the exponential growth in connected users and penetration of the internet in their daily lives. Various businesses find e-commerce as a golden opportunity for tapping consumers & selling goods online without much hassle, and why not? e-commerce is not bound by distance, physical location or time factors.
E-Commerce Is Easy As A Pie.
E-commerce websites have played an essential role in filling the gap between a provider & a consumer very well, But If you think that E-commerce site is a just like another website for buying, selling or delivering products online, you might have to think again. It is not as simple as it seems. A typical e-commerce site is a combination of several different processes & tools such as catalog management, customer management, invoicing & billing system, tax management, shipping & delivery process, payment gateways, are all combining work over the internet that enables an e-business to process every transaction smoothly & we are not even mentioning security, marketing, selling, legal & other issues here.
So What Does That Mean?
We said not easy, but we don’t say impossible. Establishing an e-comm business is just like starting any other business that requires time and efforts. Most people think it as a side business but it’s not, it’s a full-time devotional job that requires focus, dedication, persistence & mostly funds. Surprisingly! besides every odd, people in India doing it, especially millennials & gen Z-ers find it more convincing & intriguing opportunity, if we talked about the traditional way, this is their traditional way in upcoming years.
Is India Even Part Of This Race?
The Indian E-commerce sector is growing very rapidly with the funding inflows by global investors. As India has third largest population over the internet after US and China, by 2022 India is supposed to generate $100 billion revenue through online retail only. Google India Vice President and MD, Rajan Anandan said, According to Google India, “E-commerce market in India is expected to cross 100 million online shoppers by the end of the year 2016”. According to a report, 65% of the buyers do online shopping due to convenience, 64% buyers shop online for the range of variety of products while 60% users use to improve their social status.
“Did you know? India is adding 6 million new internet users every month”.
The major players in the Indian digital market which occupy around 80% share of the total market are:
- Flipkart (The market leader with having about 40% market share)
- Amazon India
What Is Cross-Channel Sales?
Cross-channel selling is a growth strategy for utilising a combination of several different sales channels for the same purchase. It allows online retailers to investment into new markets at a lower risk. The most modern e-retailers now have access to numerous sales channels to penetrate new markets and expand their operations. We have recently seen a trend in India is on the rise, common shopkeepers have started opening their accounts on e-commerce giants such as Amazon India & Flipkart to become a distributor there as well only for establishing another stream of income from these channels alone & tap the missing population who aren’t buying from them. We certainly want to see the day when their cross-channel sales revenue will outpass their shop revenues someday.
Future Prospects of E-commerce Industry.
- Cross-border eCommerce really is the next great opportunity for online retailers who are seeking to operate in new markets and territories. It allows retailers for expansion of their businesses outside the home country. With an increasingly global marketplace, even small e-retailers have accounted increased revenues due to the proliferation of global eCommerce. Consumers can shop online from retailers worldwide, excluding travel and even tickets. The UK is leading global eCommerce expansion throughout the Europe.
- Virtual Stores, the future of retail
Tesco South Korea has opened world’s first virtual store that allows consumers shop online with their smartphones by scanning QR-codes in the metro stations. This strategy makes productive use of commuters’ waiting time and also save their time spent going to the supermarket. Delhi International Airport Ltd. in partnership with Home shop 18 has introduced India’s first “Virtual Shopping Wall” called “Scan N Shop” in Indira Gandhi International Airport.
- With good ICT (Information Communications Technology) infrastructure, online retailers will likely to experience more success in the area. In July 2015, The Prime Minister of India had already announced the Digital India initiative. The growth of the digital economy in India creates more opportunities for entrepreneurs to their start-ups in this sector. Fastest growing the digital market in India is expected to employ more people.
Several investments in logistics and infrastructure including warehouses and large fulfillment centers will lead to explosive growth of e-retailing. The combination of rising standards of living of the people and growing acceptability of online payments has strong growth potential for e-retailing across the country. The key sectors like skincare products, home-furnishing and baby care products will drive the future growth of the online market.