By Jaya Verma
Life’s busy routine and inclement weather are reasons enough for people not wanting to step out of the homes and instead have everything delivered or sent from their gadgets via e-commerce gateways on websites – be it fast food, flowers or ordering merchandise from anywhere in the world!
What a blessing with e-commerce in bloom all over the internet, one can shop for the best of clothes, music and cinema tickets online and at times get whopping discounts! As online sales surge, people are shopping and working at the same time. You can even buy stuff directly through advertisements on facebook.
We are able to shop anything from the luxury of being in our beds with the advantage of comparing various brands, products and services available with virtual showrooms (and even read their reviews). Some of these e-commerce giants doing booming business in India are: Flipkart, Myntra, Snapdeal, Amazon and Jabong. They offer options like cash on delivery where you see the product, satisfy yourself and if you don’t like it, you can even return it! Moreover, one can get all the brands at one place/website rather than traversing the showrooms in a mall.
Booking tickets has never been easier; Railway travel, cinema tickets or air tickets online is just a few steps to fetch. Tanya goel, a 19 year collegiate, says “My time really gets saved now that I don’t have to go to the market actually for shopping. I simply order stuff online and that too on a better price. I’m a fan of books and I find no better place to shop for it other than on Flipkart.” For booking cinema tickets “Book my show’ is a popular and reliable website.
The recent merger of Flipkart and Myntra has been in big news for the Indian e-commerce world. Flipkart, founded in 2007, got famous because of its services under the books section. They offer a variety of other products ranging from fashion and accessories to electronics and appliances to kids care to everything else. On the other hand, Myntra is the retailer of fashion and casual lifestyle products. Marking the biggest consolidation in the e-commerce space in India, Flipkart acquired Myntra in an estimated Rs. 2000 crore deal this year (2014). The deal was influenced by two large common shareholders Tiger Global and Accel Partner. Both the companies combined to create an entity with annualized sales of $1.5 billion, bringing them closer and in some cases rivaling the much older offline retailers like Future Group, Aditya Birla and Reliance.
With the acquisition, Flipkart becomes the largest e-commerce player by a fair margin in the country and gives it breathing space in a crowded market. With Myntra’s share of 30% online fashion sales, Flipkart now has 50% shares in a segment that’s clocking nearly 100% annualized growth stealing the thunder of Gurgaon based Snapdeal, which was looking to be the first e-tailer in India to cross Rs. 1000 crore fashion sales by the end of the year. This merger might also place them in a better position to take on the likes of Amazon, which has become increasingly aggressive in the growing e-tailing market. As a part of the acquisition, Myntra co-founder Mukesh Bansal will join Flipkart’s board and will also oversee their fashion business. Flipkart and Myntra will remain two separate entities but people holding stalk options in Myntra will now hold the same in Flipkart.
Things may not be as upbeat today as they were a while ago, but online businesses are only going to get bigger. The infrastructure for e-commerce is going to reach even in the smallest neighborhoods and nations in the forthcoming years. In the near future, only those businesses will survive that adapt to changes in the market and understand the need to embrace newer marketing methods to reach their target audience.
The global e-commerce sale has affected the traditional business styles forcing most of the traditional brick and mortar businesses to enter the global online market place. E-commerce is thriving as infrastructure, laws and consumer preference evolve. “With office work load and taking out time for my family, I hardly used to make any purchases on my own. But since I can order things online now and get them at my doorstep, I do it whenever I get free time during office hours”, Ankit Malik, a young businessman tells fnbworld. There is an array of products which are only offered on the internet to the consumers. With this, consumers’ ability to gather information about products and prices has increased. The effects of e-commerce are not short termed; the changes are not going to fade away in few years; instead they are going to prevail and grow in the coming decades. The use of internet and e-commerce has a huge shopping potential for India’s next generation.