Online Business in India:Perceptible Increase over the Years
The concept of online business began in the late nineties when the world witnessed the “dot com boom.” When it was suggested that online shops could replace “brick and mortar” businesses, many in India were sceptical. Such scepticism was natural: Indians are fussy shoppers; they usually want to try out everything before they decide to part with their money. So, it wasn’t surprising to hear people say that while online business might work in America, it would not enjoy the same kind of success in India.
A Radical Change in Shopping Habits
But since those days, twenty years ago, the world has changed, and so has India. Indians have taken to online shopping like fish to water. In recent years, online buying has accelerated in India, thanks to the likes of Amazon and its Indian counterparts such as Flipkart. As a rule, Indian shoppers are impatient and suspicious. They don’t trust shopkeepers easily. Once they have made payment using a credit card or other payment device, they want to see and use the item they have bought as soon as possible. They are also keen to return something that doesn’t fit properly, such as, for instance, a pair of shoes. Thus, two things, more than any others, have contributed to the online business boom in the subcontinent: next-day delivery and a strictly enforced return policy.
Convenience of Buying Online
More and more manufacturers of goods are lining up to have their products listed on a site such as Amazon that can reach every household of this vast country. Increasingly, Indians are enjoying the sheer convenience of buying things online. While many, especially women, enjoy a day out at a mall, they still relish the comfort of having goods delivered at their doorstep. Such shopping extends not only to retail items such as clothes or electronic goods, but even to grocery items.
Discount Offers Attract Indian Buyers
Online business is very competitive. Businesses are quick to offer huge discounts and bargain basement prices to entice new entrants to the online shopping experience. Whether they want to buy movie tickets or make travel bookings, Indian shoppers are, likewise, quick to take advantage of a discounted price. Increasingly, these shoppers are realizing that if a site offers a bargain, many other sites will follow suit. All that is needed is some patience to see if there are still cheaper options on offer. Often, people plan trips well in advance to be able to get better deals. Airlines offer ridiculous discounts to travellers who book three months ahead of a planned trip, as do hotels. Thus, international travel sites such as Trip Advisor find themselves vying for business with such Indian counterparts as Make My Trip.
Online Betting Has Taken Off
Like every other business that has a presence on the web, betting sites in India have begun to attract Indian bettors in droves. You would only have to visit any internet cafe in India to come across people playing Rummy online. With its vast population of cricket fans, India is fast turning into a destination of choice for online betting sites. Apart from cricket, Indian bettors are also attracted to betting on the outcomes of other sports such as tennis, football, and horse racing. Major international betting sites have begun to seek a piece of the lucrative Indian betting market. Indian bettors are becoming increasingly familiar with such international names as Betrally, Bet365, Betway, Royal Panda, and Unibet, to mention just a few.
Online Business Has a Bright Future in India
India, with its population of about 1.3 billion people, has a huge middle-class with money to spend. To put things in perspective, this middle-class segment of shoppers exceeds the size of the population of the United States of America. Indian and international businesses have been quick to realize the potential of selling online in such a vast market.