- What is E-Commerce?
E-commerce is the market where people can buy and sell goods on a digital platform. This enables the manufacturers to reach out to a huge customer base. The penetration of the internet has been sharp for which, e-commerce has also stepped up.
- Popular companies
Recently, there has been a spurt in number of e-commerce companies that have come up in the retail market offering various concessions and discounts. Apart from the giants like Amazon, flipkart, Snapdeal, shopclues, many others that have also come up include Indiamart, BigBasket, Schoolkart among others.
- E-Commerce market in India
Although penetration of e-commerce in India is low as compared to markets like the USA and UK but is growing at a much faster rate with a large number of new entrants. Overall e-commerce market has crossed Rs 150000 crores in 2020 with both online travel and e-tailing contributing equally. Some of the prominent names in the Indian E-commerce Industry are Flipkart, Jabong, Myntra, Snapdeal, Amazon, eBay, Homeshop18, etc.
- Can be a start of a new Era?
E-commerce has been a changing point for many young entrepreneurs. It has been a beneficial factor for all those who have wanted to create a mark in the business world. Thus, we can consider the e-commerce as a stepping stone for the success of many new trades.
E-COMMERCE, A BOON?
- Increasing job opportunities
A new dimension in business will create more jobs and employments. A recent HSBC report pointed out that e-commerce alone could create 12 million new jobs over a decade. E-commerce provides jobs to the highly educated personnel like Engineers and MBAs as well as it provides the surface level jobs for the less educated sector of the society in the form of delivery boys
- Globalization of stock
Globalization which is the need of the hour walks hand in hand with e-commerce. Finding things in online stores is much easier compared to physical shops. We can buy any product from any corner of the world through online stores, even if we live in a remote area. There is a large amount of variety to choose from. E-commerce websites give you better and cheaper options for everything.
- Less time consuming
Online shopping is very convenient and time saving for consumers, because products will be delivered at our homes. E-commerce platforms are bringing more and more features like delivering daily usage items for the month, same day shipping etc. Also, the need to stand in queue to pay the cash is eliminated.
- Less investment
Less capital investment and operation costs make online shopping sites more profitable. E-commerce helps you reduce infrastructure cost and many other costs, that you mostly incur when you have an offline business. It avoids the interference of third-party agents, and the product directly reaches the end user, thus giving a greater profit margin.
E-COMMERCE, A BANE?
Though e-commerce is a multi-billion-dollar industry, yet, it has got its limitations. Let’s have a look -
- Greater offline sales
Though the growth of online stores is faster, 90% the sales of retail items in India is being done by physical stores. The biggest advantage of physical stores is the facility to touch and try the products, which is pretty difficult in E-commerce.
- Unrealistic prices
Recently, many of the E-commerce companies have adopted the unrealistic pricing to sell their goods into the market and to attract a large customer base. Under this unrealistic pricing the e-tailers are selling their goods at unexpected high discounts than in any retail store. This is definitely hurting the sale of the retailers who are investing and not meeting their sales target.
- Effect on the Indian Economy
The economy set up of India is presently running on these physical markets rather than E-commerce market as of in USA and UK. Even after such tremendous growth of E-commerce in India, nearly 95 percent of business is still generated by offline retailers. The unrealistic price not only affects the small retailers but also hinders the growth of the Indian economy.
- Customer relations
The e-commerce companies do not have any physical store as available with the normal retailers where the customers can go and ask for the repair or replacement, the customers sometimes have to face loss also. Physical stores enable the owner to have stronger customer relations, when compared to online shopping sites.
- Cyber attacks
As the E-commerce websites are highly dependent on the internet, they are prone to cyber attacks. The payments made online can be dangerous. Sometimes, the amount of the bill also gets deducted twice and it takes a lot of time to get the refund.
- Observed trends
More and more physical stores are integrating with E-commerce sector. Physical stores are called as ‘Brick and mortar system’. Consumers are preferring online shopping for some goods like furniture & office supplies, and preferring physical stores for some goods like groceries & food items.
- Discounts offered
Many find the discounts harmful as they are offered on slow moving, perishable, long time inventory holdings. Sometimes the discount is offered to compete & kill a good product. The loss due to the discounts is born by the seller. Thus, the e-commerce sites should keep up to the good standards and provide a quality service. This will benefit them, the seller and the customer.
- Great competition
The e-commerce companies are striving and competing against each other to give better experiences to customers as well as manufacturers. India has a high potential of sustaining the e-commerce business. The Indian e-commerce is constantly on a rise in its part as more and more investors from foreign land shows up for investing.
- A balanced view
The excess of everything is harmful. Although there should be the growth of e-commerce sector in India as the technology advancement is high, but this should be done in the umbrella of norms and regulations. The controlled e-commerce market will prove a boon to the economy but an uncontrolled market may prove to be a bane that will hinder the growth of country.
Thus, we can say that the physical stores will not go away for sure. Instead the present trend indicates that physical stores and E-commerce sector will work together in a win-win situation.
If you want to have a brief idea about how to present these points in front of a group, do watch the video-