Right at the outset, let me establish the growing strength of online companies. E-commerce has taken the market by storm. Amazon created history, when on Thursday it officially became more valuable than the biggest retailer in the world, Wal-Mart.
When markets closed, Amazon had a market cap of $246.54 billion vs. Wal-Mart’s $230.53 billion cap. Wal-Mart, in business for the last 53 years, got smacked by Amazon. It is reflective of a fact – E-commerce is the future of buying and selling!
India is one the fastest-growing e-commerce markets today, a reflection on the innovative and revolutionary mindset of Indian entrepreneurs.
About 130 million Indians owned smart phones last year, a number that is set to hit 750 million by 2020! Without doubt, smart phones have made life more convenient. The connectivity is faster and has a wide reach. My friends and family are just a call away!
E-retailers are a blessing in a world where time is the costliest currency. Personally, I’d much rather shop online than go to a fancy mall with inflated prices, and the inconvenience of travelling on Delhi roads just make matters worse.
India’s internet users are swelling in number, with a user base of about 243.2 millions, as of January 2014. Despite having the third-largest user base in the world, the penetration of internet is low compared to markets like the United States, United Kingdom or France, but is growing at a much faster rate, adding around 6 million new entrants every month. The industry consensus is that growth is at an inflection point. In India, cash on delivery is the most preferred payment method, accumulating 75% of the e-retail activities.
E-Commerce has become an important tool for small and large businesses worldwide, not only to sell to customers, but also to engage them. In 2012, ecommerce sales topped $1 trillion for the first time in history.
Mobile devices are playing an increasing role in the mix of e-commerce. Some estimates show that purchases made on mobile devices will make up 25% of the market by 2017.
Recently the End of Reason Sale on Myntra attracted millions of potential customers, including me. Huge discounts, deals, and offers! I do guilt-free shopping at midnight without any guilt and wake up with a surprise. But what if you don’t like the fit? Every online company has a flexible policy on the issue – return with bill if it’s not up to your liking, even after a couple of weeks. One of the other biggest advantages of online shopping is the competitive pricing. It is definitely more economical to shop online than going to a fancy showroom.
The recent announcement by the world’s largest online retailer, Amazon, of investing $5-billion to give cutthroat competition to top e-retailers – Flipkart and Snapdeal – is evident of the fact that it is the future!
Tata’s Chairman Emeritus, Ratan Tata has said that e- commerce will change the face of merchandising and marketing in India. Ratan Tata, after his retirement, has invested in ten companies, mostly in the e-commerce space. He said: “This is the changing face of our country, where we have start-ups helping kirana stores turn e-retailers, helping them earn more profits.”
There is a huge scope for employment opportunities in the e-commerce industry. Top students passing out from prestigious universities are being lapped up by tier ‘A’ companies. There are huge incentives and the compensation package is at par with the best.
Customers, as well as the e-retailers, rely on the internet to conduct business transactions. E-commerce has allowed transactions to take place anytime and from anywhere. Whether an individual is sitting in his garden in the US, or anywhere else, business can be conducted through the internet. How amazing is the invention!
The USP of e-commerce is that it has paved the way for geophysical barriers to disappear, making all consumers and businesses on earth potential customers and suppliers. eBay is a good example of e-commerce business. Consumers and businesses are able to post their items and sell them around the Globe.
Terms like virtual enterprise, virtual bank, network marketing, online shopping, payment and advertising, have taken over our vocabulary. The economy has only benefitted. For example, B2B is a swiftly expanding business model. It leads to lower cost, improving the efficiency of the economy and the employment level.