Last week was a watershed in the history of E Commerce in India! A few things happened that are set to change the rules of the game when it comes to shopping! Companies like Flipkart and Snapdeal, created a sensation by literally taking the retail market by storm on a scale that was hitherto unknown. The ongoing ‘Diwali Dhamaka ‘sale by the biggie Amazon has set the markets ablaze. Imagine both Flipkart and Snapdeal managed to rake in Rs 600 crores in just a day! We have seen the business being transacted by the retailers by giving discounts to the public with attractive schemes from time to time and retaining the loyalty by traditional methods like discounts, accumulation of points on the loyalty cards which can be redeemed at a later date!
The beauty of this way of shopping lies in the fact that without physically moving out of the house or office one can see ‘virtual store’ with a complete catalog and details of items available including 3-D views . All data between the transactions and exchange with individuals or with other business partners happens electronically including the buying and selling by using totally secure systems.
This concept has brought about efficiencies in the supply chain management, delivery logistics, warehousing and home delivery of products in a time bound manner. Virtually every type of shopping starting from retail goods, booking holidays ,air/rail / bus tickets, insurance policies, complete banking, payment of all kinds of bills for utilities is now possible thus eliminating the need to travel for completing these activities!
Just imagine all this has happened barely in last 40 years (in 1971-72) with the advent of ARPANET in sale of cannabis between students of Stanford and MIT( Massachusetts Institute of Technology ) laying the foundation of first ‘e commerce’. The formal ‘Online Shopping ‘was initiated in 1979 by Michael Aldrich. From these humble beginning Tim Berners Lee wrote the first browser of World Wide Web in 1990, thereby opening the flood gate for rapid developments to see more browsers like Netscape, Mozilla and many more. The volume of business grew at a staggering pace seeing an exponential growth in the next few years. India’s business in this domain has seen a rise of 30% in 2014 compared to the year 2013.
Currently the reach of internet in India is limited thus the volume of this business is just the ‘tip of the iceberg’! Imagine with the connected world this can bring about a sea change in the way we live! Already in advanced countries and in big cities in India one can get even the groceries and organically grown vegetables and fruits at the doorstep at the click of the mouse.
The conventional business and small retailers are crying foul and have approached the government to lay down the norms to protect their business and even existence. At least in India which has a very diverse milieu of population spread from villages to small and big cities the fears are unfounded, as there is ample space for all to coexist. However, the harsh reality is that in the Darwinian world only the fittest will survive!
PS- Images Kind Courtesy Google
PS- Images Kind Courtesy Google