As an e-commerce solutions provider and someone that has been working with businesses to build models around etailing, it’s an interesting time for the e-commerce industry. The space is definitely maturing and it’s no more about winner takes all. When we talk of any kind of commerce we have to talk about the consumers. So some quick facts about India as a consumer base – it is the world’s biggest democratic country and the second most populous. From being a primarily agriculture driven economy it is no driven by technology and services. The GDP growth of the last decade has been a healthy 6-8%.
So, the country with the stats brings about its own set of challenges and opportunities as well. Most of them, like in any new sector did latch on to the opportunities and what we saw in the early years of e-commerce in India was a slew of e-commerce businesses that were coming up, getting crazy funding and evaluations and then getting into red or closing shops because the revenue models were weak. Having said that, the year 2012 rounded up an exciting 5 years of great growth for the country. The year 2013 has also started off on a good note where there are some new e-commerce businesses that show promise of deliverance. One thing is for sure that 2013 is going to be the year of interesting e-commerce innovations and consolidations.The e-commerce solutions and the technology space and the maturity being witnessed in the Indian market makes us believe that following will be some of the trends that continue to emerge.
B2B e-commerce will make its presence felt more significantly, contrary to what we see now where majority of the e-commerce portals are B2C and targeting retail consumers. What this means is that e-commerce will find more acceptance in the Indian businesses as part their dealings and transactions with suppliers, vendors and corporate consumers. In the Indian B2C market currently stands at around 14 billion dollars but looking at the mature markets like US, the opportunity will be there for the picking for companies that can bring e-commerce technology to other technology driven solutions for creating efficiencies. Those are the ones that will grow in scale and much to the envy of the retail e-commerce businesses.
Social media marketing has become an important part of any digital marketing strategy and it has a significant role to play for online businesses. Which means that for e-commerce portals social media marketing is as important as any other form of marketing in their marketing mix. However the interesting trend that is emerging now is that social media platforms are not just about getting eyeballs but its more about a uniform communication strategy across all platforms. And its about the reputation that a e-commerce business can build which has to be beyond just low prices and a wide portfolio. So if a business a can crack this then social media will start yielding actual business results. The year is about building a good online reputation with your audience.
With the literal flooding of inexpensive smart phones in the Indian market, the download of entertainment content and apps consumption is getting common in small towns. Some research from Kleiner Perkins ( a large VC firm) shows that the mobile internet usage in India has actually been growing more as compared to the desktop internet usage. This only means one thing and that is m-commerce. As the mobile usage for data proliferates the e-commerce businesses will have to focus more on the mobile and deliver experiences that adapt to this emerging interface. The e-commerce companies will have to invest in solid mobile platform development to stay ahead.
There are products that we never thought could be bought online, but now they are… so with a wider acceptance of this medium of purchase, the e-commerce business is only get bigger. As a web solutions and e-commerce solutions provider, Neuronimbus is working closely with reputed businesses and start ups alike to unlock the potential of e-commerce.
Until next time… keep shopping (electronically… that is)