India has an internet user base of about 566 million as of December 2018, which accounts to about 40 per cent of the population. With the rise of internet as a new media, ecommerce has been expanding at an unprecedented rate, adding around six million new entrants every month.
Apart from influencing consumer trends, ecommerce has changed the way business is done in India. It has significantly catered to the seller community to help robust profit and expand businesses.
Whereas, bricks and mortar are taking a toll among the convenience, reliability and efficiency e-commerce is bringing to the market.
The evolution of technology-led innovations such as digital payments, hyper-local logistics, mass customer engagements and digital advertisements have enabled the e-commerce industry to grow rapidly and thereby enable sellers to grow their business at a fast pace. Over the years, the e-commerce platforms have uplifted the seller community in India, and made the journey a smooth sail for those who are starting their business.
The industry is a boon as it facilitates small businesses to scale up their operations by providing a means of financing, technology and training for those without such resources. Bal Kishan Lakhotia, is just another example of an individual who took a leap into the growing industry and started enlisting his products in e-commerce platforms, when his brick and mortar business started taking a dip in 2017.
As an avid online shopper himself, he eventually started to judge the value and benefits of e-commerce through his own experience. Within approximately a year and a half, he managed to successfully grow his business twofold, with the number of daily orders skyrocketing from around 35 to over 300 today.
According to Lakhotia, “the key to a successful online business is to give the best quality product to the customer. They are looking for convenience and choice when they come online, so you have to make the process as smooth as possible for them. Flipkart helps me with insights and ideas on how to expand my selection and reduce returns, which helps my business grow. As long as you put the customer first, being successful is not very difficult.”
Considering content, customisation, cost reduction, convenience, and choice, people are significantly turning towards e-commerce to serve their needs.
“In the last 4-5 years of doing business, I realised that what customers really like about e-commerce is the convenience factor. Whatever they need, they can find and buy online. As a seller, I do everything to help a customer in making their decision, by sharing good quality photos, mentioning the sizes clearly etc. Because of this, I think that shoppers don’t mind not having that touch-and-feel factor, when they get so many other benefits from online shopping,” said MD Sabeeluddin, the owner of one of the biggest online sellers in eastern India.
Among the e-commerce platforms, are stories of numerous sellers who turned their dream into reality. For them, the advantages of ecommerce topple over that of bricks and mortar due to an influx in online consumerism. Considering the globalised society, sellers believe they finally have a chance at success.