The year 2020 although will be recalled for the pandemic, India’s retail sector, particularly that of online retail will remember it for the economic turnaround and demand revival. The crisis has transformed the way e-commerce functions, with portals having experienced an incredible traffic boom. While the traditional retail sales have declined, e-commerce has witnessed an impressive year-over-year growth with most if not all, brick-and-mortar stores having navigated their businesses online.
The Indian e-commerce industry has been on a rising growth curve and is anticipated to surpass the US to become the second-largest e-commerce market in the world by 2034. With technological advancements and internet penetration, the country’s online sales market has been offering promising prospects for the global business giants who are keen on exploring this space.
This has augured well for the PM’s ‘Make In India’ campaign which is a powerful move supporting the boom of online retail. The ‘Make In India’ initiative will further extend investment options for universal companies and brands across to explore the Indian markets, thus accelerating the country’s e-commerce growth. The campaign has created a level playing field to welcome global investors to invest in the Indian markets. Global investors have placed their capitalization around segments like textile, fashion retail, and machinery manufacturing to name a few. The current FDI regulations by the Indian government already allow 100% FDI under the automatic route, thus lending a helping hand to the Indian e-commerce segment to achieve global recognition.
The pandemic has fast-tracked the growth of the e-commerce industry with more businesses joining the business revolution than ever before. With consumers across the globe have demonstrated a shift in buying patterns, the competition is getting steeper, and online shopping behaviours are fluctuating faster than ever before. This changing economy calls for keeping up with the developing e-commerce trends to cut through the noise, get noticed, and appeal to customers. The industry must make note that it is never too late to jump right in, learn something new, and gauge if the change is appropriate for your business and target audience. For now, consumers are in the driver’s seats and e-commerce businesses will be tailoring the journey ahead for them.
The below mentioned futuristic trends will positively impact businesses in the coming months and years:
Personalized commerce is the next frontier: Contemporarily, e-commerce has been leveraging on personalization technology to lend consumers a tailored experience. Delivering personal experiences on e-commerce sites is accomplished by dynamically displaying content, product recommendations, and precise offers based on enriched personal data like browsing behaviour, page visits, previous purchase history, and buyer demographics. As compared to traditional retail, e-commerce does not comprise of a retail salesperson to endorse products based on interest, likings, or taste. Human touch-points offer myriad opportunities to beat out the competition and this is the magic of personalization – imitating what a buyer’s in-store experience would be, through an online custom-made journey. Personalization truly is the missing ingredient to an effective virtual shopping experience and will be the future of e-commerce.
Product cataloging changing the business landscape: Modern-day cataloging has surpassed the initial way of offering just images or brief product descriptions. Today, it is aimed at lending the customer an experience that is as close to physically experiencing the product. The required supplementary product data that is added to the brochure, make the buyer’s purchase decisions all the more effortless.
Interactive product visuals: It is very common for customers to undergo this dilemma – you like a product, but you are unsure if what you are seeing on the site is exactly what you will receive after purchasing. This may make customers hesitant from hitting the purchase button. Modern-day buyers demand on getting an experience of the product before investing, this is why high-resolution images form an integral part of e-commerce sales. With consumers demanding for a 360-degree viewing images that facilitate to see the product from all angles, clearly indicates that static images are no longer sufficient.
E-commerce sector undergoing cross-border growth: India is steadily becoming a significant player in the eyes of the global stage, enabling its economy to accelerate in the coming years. India’s untapped potential and a CAGR of 17.8%, from 2019 to 2023 is higher than any other country and this is a major reason for international online shopping firms to eye the Indian markets. Our country’s eCommerce sales make up a sheer of 4.4% of its overall retail sales allowing major international players to explore the market to the fullest. India’s e-commerce sector currently ranks 9th in cross-border growth globally.
Augmented and virtual reality tools make for an interactive retail experience: A complete game-changer for e-commerce, AR and VR technology has been enabling eCommerce retailers in overcoming one of their biggest challenges — the inability of the consumers to try on or experience products before purchasing them. For instance, through AR and VR, customers can virtually try on products or position furniture pieces within their homes. The speedy acceptance of this superior technology is a clear indication that AR and VR markets are estimated to have 2.4 billion users by the year 2023.
Celebrity endorsement driving social commerce: Social commerce refers to the sale of products directly through social media. It varies from social media marketing since you are not readdressing users to a virtual shop, but instead lending them the ability to checkout directly within the network they are using at that moment. Social commerce combined with influencer marketing through sponsored content partnerships with micro and macro-influencers is a recipe for a surge in sales.
Actionable content to drive business: Relevant and engaging content facilitates in driving business by appealing to potential shoppers, guiding them towards purchasing opportunities and advancing conversions. Types of content like interactive, storytelling, stance-talking, and email conversations can be effectively mixed and matched and tailored to suit each customer’s interests.
Getting ahead of trends and binding up-to-date technologies can aid e-commerce brands in driving sales, attracting new customers, and increasing market share.
Article by – Mr. Ankur Dayal, CEO & Co-founder at Primarc Pecan