Recent statistical data (2012) on consumer buying behavior shows that Indians are purchasing all sort of stuff online more than ever. Such is the craze of online shopping in India that people are buying even second hand computers online. Compared to US and some other developed countries it’s still nowhere near (in terms of total money spent) but the growth rate is definitely much higher and exponential in India.
Initially (in early 2000 and up to 2005) online shopping was rather slow to catch up due to many reasons – the biggest being very low internet penetration plus slow internet connections and a bad shopping experience. However from late 2006 online shopping speed up and became a big phenomenon within the next two years. According to a Nielsen survey of 2008, India emerged as the 3rd biggest nation in terms of online shopping and using credit card online. This survey put – “Drawn by the facilities offered by the Web and the diversity of products available on it, Indian netizens have emerged as the third biggest credit card users globally for online purchasing, next only to the Turkey and Ireland.”
This exponential growth is still getting strong by the day. According to industry experts, following are some of the reasons behind this trend in India –
Widespread reach and growing usage of internet (especially fast broadband connections)
Increasing per capita income due to strong economic growth of the country
Improved online banking services (resulting in easy online money transaction process) and other easy payment options (like COD – Cash On Delivery)
Saving of precious time and transport cost of the customer
Free home delivery and improved, speedy logistics
Luxury of ordering goods from the comfort of home and getting them delivered at the doorstep
Ever growing number of online shopping sites/portals increased competition which ultimately resulted into reduced prices of goods and frequent lucrative offers (best buy deals). At these sites, most of the products (specially mobiles, gadgets, TV, computers, laptops and other electronic goods) are available at prices lower than open retail market. For some sites its big business now with daily sales in millions of Rupees. Some of the most popular categories among Indian online shoppers include – electronic items, branded apparels, shoes and accessories, jewelry and beauty products. What do you think of these trends?