Importance of MultiChannel Inventory Management for Online Sellers

Multichannel inventory management becomes important for online sellers  who often get confronted with the problem of managing a common / centralized inventory across various channels including their own website, offline store and e-commerce marketplaces.

The buyer journey and preference especially on e-commerce marketplaces is largely unknown to the sellers and the need to be optimally stocked up on all channels is the key requirement to win the sales race. Loss of orders due to stock outs and over ordering due to inventory not updated on-time, everytime can lead to serious business disasters. 

Sellers would tend to spend more money on the inventory carrying cost than the amount spent on buying the inventory itself. Also the stock which a seller is carrying has depreciation and devaluation risk due to obsolescence or expiry dates. Hence the need to optimize stocks through a robust multichannel inventory management system is essential. Timely reordering and getting on-time stock alerts is also one of the important parameters when building your inventory management system.

 

multichannel inventory management

 

In simple words, the opportunity to reach your customers / audiences on their preferred channels at all their journey points is called multi-channel management. While this can be done at a very raw and basic level manually, there are good multi channel ecommerce software available in India and globally to solve this problem.

 

Most buyers are now using marketplaces like Amazon, Flipkart, Etsy, eBay etc to buy products. Their search behavior is largely dependent on many things like listing quality, product rating etc, but more importantly the availability of the product is the key for them to make the spot decision. As a seller it’s most important to be on that spot all the time.

 

For a seller it gets harder with more channels and more SKUs to manage as the business keeps growing. This often leads to late orders, penalties, higher return rates and dissatisfied customers. Also, customers really don’t care about the problems or the efforts which sellers face for fulfilling their orders. Their single motto is to get a great shopping experience and be well taken care of.  

 

Overselling is also a key pain area. More than getting penalized for unfulfilled orders, it leads to embarrassment and pain of losing customers. Multichannel inventory and order management software will allow you to create powerful and easy integrations with unlimited channels and give you access to a dashboard from where you can manage and control your inventory and orders centrally. 

 

Agile platforms will start building their own inventory from the first channel that you connect. This could possibly be your best or biggest sales channel. You can use this inventory or modify it to publish it across all your channels. Syncing stock level across your multi channels regardless of how and when they were changed will relieve you from all the problems of managing inventory. A good inventory management software will let you check your stock from anywhere, whether you are at home or even enjoying a vacation with family anywhere in the world.

 

A lot of sellers try to execute their multichannel order management requirements through spreadsheets like Excel or building custom algorithms in the Excel spreadsheet. But this may not be the right method, as excel is an offline utility and does not have the capability to consume real-time information of orders and inventory coming through various platforms. Real-time inventory synching is crucial to success to get the multichannel inventory and order processing right. Because this delivers strong fulfillment rates, loyal customers and great reputation with marketplaces. 

 

A good multichannel inventory management system will also help you in linking your duplicate SKUs and managing bundles and product combos. 

 

A great tool which connects your products, orders and inventory of all your channels including your marketplace channels, offline store and website is absolutely essential for succeeding and growing your business in a multichannel business environment. This is how a seller can focus more on business and not on inventory. 

 

If you are selling on international marketplaces, one of the advantages of having a multichannel e-commerce order and inventory system is that the seller will have the ability to reach out his products to international customers without needing to invest in physical warehouses.

 

Due to COVID-19,it has become even more important that you save your valuable time and power up the efficiency of your business. Invest in a good multi channel inventory and order management system for your marketplace and e-commerce business..

Benefits of e-commerce for small businesses

benefits of e-commerce

If you are an entrepreneur and have not started selling your products online, this is your time to stand up and go e-commerce friendly. Electronic commerce, basically known as e-commerce is a medium to process buying and selling of products and services online. 
The benefits of e-commerce not only includes introducing your product globally but also helps you in saving your time, money and other resources. 
So before we move ahead and talk about its benefits let’s go through the journey of the term.

Let’s travel to past

The term e-commerce was officially announced in the year 1991 as the internet was open for commercial use, the process at that time only supported the execution of commercial transitions electronically, that is the transition was only done between business organizations in order to send commercial documents electronically. 


The process of transition back then was done with the help of some leading technologies for electronic data interchange.
In the time span of 3 years the acceptance of the internet among the population of America. The general public turned towards a handy use of the internet and that was when the idea of e-commerce for buying and selling of goods evolved.


As it is rightly said, “Rome was not built in a day”, so even with the idea and a complete picture of plan the process took another 4 years. These years were invested in creating a security protocol like HTTP.
Finally, in the year 2000, many US companies represented e-commerce, especially by creating a web page on the world wide web.  
And since then the process is improving, being accepted and growing globally. E-commerce has been providing many benefits to growing businesses, just learn and earn them.

Benefits of e-commerce

In all these years e-commerce has been accepted and trusted by many organizations. Reports by India brand equity foundation (IBEF) depict that the Indian e-commerce market is expected to grow and reach up to US $ 200 billion by 2026. 
Therefore the foremost benefit of using e-commerce for your business is sustaining the market competitions and boosting your chances of success.  
E-commerce has evidently shown cases of many success stories but today we will only talk about the benefits of e-commerce for small businesses. 

  • Marketing

Marketing of a product has always been an important aspect of its acceptance in every domain. The process of e-commerce promises to make your work convenient. You can easily market your product on an online platform. 

With e-commerce, you can make your customers aware of your product, new launch and its features via online medium and attract a large mass in a short time.

More than this you can also attract your customers by providing a visual tour and with leverage content in different social media like websites, Facebook, Instagram, etc.

  • Provide datasheet

E-commerce not only markets your product but additionally, it helps in providing a detailed outline of your product to customers. 

You can now help your customers to go for the most appropriate choice as per their needs. The datasheet helps customers to get the right insight into your product at any time of the day and at any place. Customers now need not travel to the store just to see if this is the product that they are looking for.

For your customers, it is very important to get the right information in a convenient manner about the product and of course, this is another way for you to win their trust.

  • Retarget your customers

E-commerce helps you to keep an eye on your customers and their interests. You can now target and retarget your customers easily.

Retargeting your customers will market your product and boost the buying behavior of your customers. 

E-commerce helps the sellers to understand the buying behavior of customers and thereafter work accordingly. For example, if your customers select a pair of shoes and mark it as wish, so you will have data to retarget your customers accordingly. You can mail them with some discount offers or you can reach them again when you find that there is some attractive offer that your customers may like. 

On the other hand in traditional commerce, it was very hard for retailers to remember about the interests of all of their customers and then provide them the experience they are looking for.

  • Business never stops

Every shopper is different from their interests, buying patterns, shopping styles. Some shoppers shop for specific things others may shop because the product attracted. Some shoppers do shopping as a leisure activity while others may find it a hard task. Something that every shopper has in common is they shop according to their suitable time. 

And so e-commerce provides every business with a platform to work 24/7 for all 365 days. Now you can grow and expand your business with an unstoppable working culture.
Even if you are not physically available your channel will work for you. 

  • Reduces recurring cost

We all understand starting a business is really challenging, there are many challenges that cross the path of entrepreneurs. Out of all those challenges, one of the biggest challenges comes from finance. 

Since e-commerce is supporting your business in so many ways, how could it not help you here?

E-commerce helps a business by reducing the rent or lease cost of the store, maintenance of the store, personnel cost, store design, and personnel hiring and training cost. 
With e-commerce, you can work on an online platform making a virtual store. 

  • Offer details to your customer

Just looking at an advertising poster and buying it up! 

The buyers of today are smarter than this, they need details retailed to brand and product they are planning to buy and that where e-commerce comes in the picture, it helps retailers to not only to provide details to customers regarding products or services but it works in providing a detailed outline of the company.

There are times when customers want to know everything about the product including the brand and company and in retail stores, it is quite hard to give customers a detailed outline or answer to every question that a customer is looking for.

Therefore, e-commerce can help you there. All it demands is making a good profile of the company by making attractive and user-friendly websites.

So start giving your customers a little more.

  • Know review of your product

Nowadays every buyer follows the ratings by other buyers on the product before purchase and then accordingly initiates their step.

By the way, do you know how amazing your product is?

If you are saying “NO” then read what your customer says. Yes! With e-commerce, you get a chance to know the feedback of your customers and can also see and compare the ratings. 

It gives you a chance to work on your product according to customers’ needs and also make other buyers aware of your product features.

Now, this is clear that we need to use e-commerce portals for growth and success but how to avail them is still a question. Right!

Don’t worry, we have an answer for that too.

Is e-commerce just perfect?

No doubt, e-commerce comes with lots of benefits for your business and it has so much to offer you, but every offer comes with a cause. So here are some of the points to reconsider about e-commerce.

  • Reconciliation- being a part of commerce be it traditional or electronic you need to look upon the internal financial records and compare it with monthly statements of banks or other financial institutions. It is an important step to do, as it avoids fraud transitions, credit drafts, and many other similar issues. 

If you are an online seller and you sell your product on different platforms together, your task becomes more stressful, as now you have to download reports, look and compare, you may also have to recheck it.

Doing all these on your own is a real hectic task!

  • Accounting/ Return filing- The story of work pressure doesn’t end here, you need to send your excel sheets to CAs or do manual entries. 

The problem that most of the small and medium enterprises face is a lack of knowledge about GST that may end up with the loss of the company rather than generating profit.

  • Inventory management- It is amazing that you have registered your business in all the online channels to sell your product, but is it convenient to handle?

No, right. 

Registering to many portals is easy, even investing money in all of them becomes an easy task, but something that is not at all is managing them together. 

Switching between one channel to another and keeping an eye on all of them is not at all easy and even if you do that, the accuracy rate shivers. 

  • Return management- Did you give a thought of how you will manage the return of your products.

Things are easy when they go in favor but turns to be harsh when they do not move as planned. So yes, return management needs a lot of attention and you have to manage all those records and update in real-time. 

So the warning most of the time is about managing all the things together that make it hard for small and medium enterprises. 

  • TDS & TCS Compliance- The journey that you have to go through using e-commerce will also involve certain compliance issues. 

For every sale, the e-commerce operator will charge commission along with the other fee that includes handling, shipping, etc. The fee comes under Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) provision, which depicts that it is liable to deduct some percentage of your income tax (Income tax act, 1961). 

If the TDS does not get deducted and paid on these expenses, the online retailer will have to pay income tax along with TCS (Tax Collected at Source) for these expenses too.

So it is very important for an online retailer to manage monthly compliance of TDS records and keep a regular track on return filing and assessment of GST.  
And since this article has talked about and solved so many problems, here is a solution to this problem too. 

You can subscribe to eVanik and solve all these issues at once. You will have a complete suite to work at your convenience.

Conclusion

The benefits of e-commerce can go way beyond this. These are some of the glimpses of benefits that you can avail of moving to e-commerce. Since everyone in the world is looking for a place where they can shop with their convenience, without investing time on going to places and choosing among thousands of options. So this is your time to give your customers what they are looking for.

However, e-commerce needs high management and looks after but moving ahead with the right plan will always give a profitable result. 

Make e-commerce your choice with your existing retail store, don’t let boundaries stop you and give your customers more than what they ask for.

Because a happy customer is all you need to grow!

Everything you need to know about Omnichannel retail

omni channel retail
Omnichannel technology of the online retail business. Multichannel marketing on social media network platform offers service of internet payment channel, online retail shopping, and Omni digital app.

“Fairy tales made me believe that magic exists. If you think about something, look for it and it happens to cross your path over and over again”. The Omnichannel strategy somehow works in making this ideology true. If you desire something, you are going to find the product everywhere, over and over again.
If we go through definitions they say “Omnichannel strategy is the process to provide customers with a fully- integrated approach to commerce”. In simple words, it is the strategy where customers have the convenience to shop on any channel with the same customer experience.
An omnichannel retail brand gives you authority to choose your shopping pattern your way, you can shop online and pick up from store or see in-store and pick online, the process even extends to selecting a product in the cart in a website and when you open it in your mobile application or via any other social media site. You will find that product in the cart.
Isn’t it magical!
Something that is going to amaze you more is, now you can even shop online and return to the store or vice versa.
So it simply says all your shopping channels are now integrated making you the priority of the time.
The process not only supports you being a customer but if you are a retailer too, trust me, omnichannel retailing is the best choice. The process does not demand retailers to be present everywhere but their products are traveling across the globe along with their identity.
Moreover, the omnichannel retail strategy gives customers overall experience and time to research among all the products. It gives you the power to get the best among thousands of products. Now you can also scan, compare, save i.e. mark the product as a wish list and then buy it from any channel. It provides the chance to buy a product without any psychological pressure of time and limited stalk.

omni channel

Journey of omnichannel retailing


The omnichannel retail system was born with the digital evolution and now is a part of our lives. It is the fastest-growing concept which is at its highest peak of acceptance today.
The omnichannel marketing was introduced in the year 2010 and was believed to be extended by multichannel marketing. The basic concept of omnichannel was to introduce a platform that makes accessibility of customers in every channel with the same shopping experience.
However, the concept did not gain any attention until 2013 and then a post by Huffington highlighted the concept by throwing light on the way, “how customers were going to the store and searching the product, comparing it at an online portal and buying according to price difference” and this prompted retailers to shift towards the omnichannel retail process.
Since then the market of omnichannel is considered to be the buzzword in the field of retailing.
Have you heard the name of Starbucks, they have now increased their retail sales to 30 percent using omnichannel retail strategy.
Their success story started with launching the Starbucks application on January 2011, the application allows customers to pre-order their coffee, see estimated time and pick it up, with payment of every order via Starbucks card customers get special points which can be seen in the application, website, and all the other channels.
These points get auto-update with every order, in real-time and can be easily redeemed. The story doesn’t end here, Starbuck’s application also gives its customers an opportunity to locate nearby stores, send gift cards, view menu and also to identify the song being played in-store.
What else a customer could even think about, so being an omnichannel retailer is giving your customers an experience they have never even imagined.
Another story is about the world’s largest online retailer, Amazon. It provides an online shopping platform for customers. The customers can now initiate buying at mobile applications and complete procedures at the website page, the customers can also mark a product as the favourite at the website and can see it later on the mobile application.
The opportunity to customers even extends far beyond this, now you can make a wish list, or collect products you want to buy and share it directly with your friends and family.
Alexa! I am hungry. I need pizza and boom options are there. Amazon is now up with a new feature to order online just by speaking it.
So if you are a retailer and want to work with Amazon, eVanik can provide you a platform to reach.
And as I said before, be more than customers can even think about.
There are many other examples of brands that reached heights by following the same strategy in all these years some are Virgin Atlantic, Bank of America, Oasis, REI, Chipotle, Timberland, Orvis.
These companies as a set example for the upcoming generation on creating omnichannel retail plans. All these companies had their own stories starting from a different stage but ended reaching the peak of success.

Reasons to go for omnichannel retailing


The idea of omnichannel retailing is a boon to this era. There are many reasons to shift your retail process to omnichannel retailing.

  • Highly accepted

Statistically speaking, according to PwC’s annual retail survey done in the year 2016,
65% of consumers are aligning more towards omnichannel retailing because it is convenient.
31% of consumers were lured by the price difference.

  • The need for every age group

As the digital and technical acceptance is raised these days and the highest population of India comprises youth.
Irrespective of age, people in India are inclining towards digital and convenient methods of shopping.

  • Allow start and end of shopping at different channels

Omnichannel gives you the opportunity to start your purchase at one channel and end it at other, you can now book a product online or check its availability and buy from the store.

  • Integrated platform for purchase and analysis

Omnichannel retail marketing provides both the retailers and customers a platform of integrated purchase and analyzes the purchase data.

  • The need of the time

Since the global market is rapidly changing, accepting omnichannel retail processes is a need of time.
The latest market research suggests that the global market is expected to grow from USD 2.99 billion in 2017 to USD 11.01 billion in 2023. The research indicates the growth factor as an increasing adoption of e-commerce for online shopping and convenient marketing procedure.

  • Earns trust of the customer

The process helps retailers to earn the trust of customers, making customers loyal towards the brand.

Reasons to think twice


When you are looking forward to an amazing idea that promises you comfort and convenience, how could you think of even a single reason for not going for it?
But Omnichannel does have a few reasons to think twice before going for it.

  • Require high maintenance

A famous quotation says “Rome was not built in a day”, the same goes with omnichannel retailing, to make your retail empire vast in the digital platform. You need to work on it, every day.
Every detail in social market matters and that needs to be maintained daily.

  • It’s challenging

You will only be considered as the omnichannel retail marketer when your product has an integrated approach via every channel, which makes the process a little complicated.
Your customers should have an online and offline approach to your product, no matter where they are trying to reach you. They should receive the same service.
And if you fail even in one aspect, then you will no longer be considered an omnichannel retailer.

Let’s talk about the facts!


After understanding what omnichannel stands for, see some of the facts associated with the term:

  • According to a global study which was done in the year 2014 by SDL, the United Kingdom found that out of 3000 customers, 90 percent said that they expect the customer experience to be consistent across channels and devices used to interact with brands.
  • According to Business2community.com, 50 percent of the customers prefer to search the product online and prefer to pick it up from the store.

The research that was done by Business2community.com also indicates that there is 56 percent of customers that use the mobile device to research at home, 38 percent check the availability of the product on their way to store and 34 percent have already used their mobile phones to research about the product before coming to store.
There are some more factual statements authenticating the benefits of omnichannel retail operations. Something that all these statements have in common is that every individual these days is highly dependent on digital means for their day to day life and therefore this is the best time for you to come up with the idea of omnichannel retail processes.
So if you are even thinking about it, I would say “GO FOR IT”.

Conclusion
Conclusively it can be said that omnichannel retail operations play a vital role in the development of both newly started ventures and already existing ones.
Market acceptance is relatively high as its phenomenal features and strategies are never going to disappoint you. Omnichannel gives both the customer and retailers a platform for direct connection, which is positively time-investing and economically friendly for both.
So moving towards an omnichannel strategy is more like taking a step towards making your brand consumer-friendly, and an approach to follow your customer’s interests.
There is a famous quote by Mickey Drexler, former CEO and current Chairman, J. Crew Group “People like consistency. Whether it’s a store or a restaurant, they want to come in and see what you are famous for” and omnichannel retail operations provide a platform for all companies to promote their products in a dynamic way.
In fact, it attracts the customer and provides a virtual tour of the product. Additionally providing customers with the flexibility and opportunity to select and buy their right fit, choosing from thousands of similar products.
Therefore the more your customers know about your company’s name, the more they will start trusting it, “So start providing a platform to explore if you are a retailer, and start exploring if you are a customer”.

Precautions that e-commerce sellers should take during the coronavirus (covid19) pandemic


The Novel Coronavirus (nCoV19) outbreak has affected over 75% of the countries in the world since its outbreak in December 2019. The SARS-CoV-2 spreads mostly from person to person through close contact or from droplets that are scattered when a person with the virus sneezes or coughs. This means that the novel coronavirus is highly contagious, which means it spreads easily from person to person. The average incubation period of the virus seems to be around 5 days.

Millions of online shipments exchange hands every day. Right from the supplier to the warehouse staff to the courier delivery boys and finally to the end shopper. This gets multiplied as over 20% of online shipments get returned to the seller causing a much higher threat.

How can Coronavirus COVID19 affect the business and health of E-Commerce Sellers and their employees?

Studies show that its cousin viruses, SARS and MERS, live for a few hours on the surface of an object. They are spread most often by respiratory droplets from one person to another. Besides, no medicine or vaccination has been developed till date to fight this pandemic. The earliest probability of getting one as per various research organizations and scientists is one year from now.

The logistics providers have been experiencing a surge in orders from shoppers who are ordering online, especially after delivery commitments like “Same Day/Next Day” delivery promises from online retailers like Amazon and others. This leaves a certain possibility of the packets being a carrier of the virus from the origin to the shopper. And that’s quite a risk. 

To make matters worse, in the case of buyer returns, the packets come back from thousands of shoppers back to the seller through multiple delivery boys throughout the day, every day.

One theory is that after the outbreak of the pandemic, more people will stay indoor and order online instead of exposing themselves by going out and shopping in physical stores. While this may sound to be a boom for eCommerce sellers, the worry is far bigger.

Ecommerce sellers need to deal throughout the day with warehouse staff and courier staff to ensure timely delivery of orders to buyers.

Now, this poses a serious 2-way threat to eCommerce Sellers. Some of the situations and scenarios which are more akin to the business of eCommerce sellers and safe practices that one should follow are:

PICKING & PACKING

  • DefinitionOrder picking is the process of finding and extracting products from a warehouse to fulfill customer orders.
  • Conventional Practice – On receiving orders, picklists get generated and given to pickers to bring the items from different locations (Racks, Shelves, Bins, etc) of the warehouse to the packing area. Packers would then put the products in various packets/boxes, affix the shipping label, use adhesives and tapes and move to the dispatch area.
  • Hazard Threats
    • One Carrier (Picker) may transmit droplets to locations (Racks, Shelves, etc) from where it could transmit to another carrier in case he goes to the same location.
    • The coronavirus appears able to linger on plastic and steel surfaces for two to three days.
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Clean, sanitize and disinfect all high-touch surfaces and warehouse locations (tables, racks, shelves, bins, light switches, barcode scanners, desks, etc.) 2-3 times a day. Cleaning does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection.
    • Allow 1 person at a time to go to the warehouse location for picking and once he has picked the items, he should wash hands and/or apply sanitizer every time after the picking.
    • Ensure people wear safety mask especially those who are commuting through public transport. An added precaution would be that pickers wear disposable safety gloves and discard them properly at the end of every day.
precautions coronavirus
Picklist for safety precautions for e-commerce sellers

DISPATCH

  • Definition – Dispatch is the activity performed when the goods have to be delivered to the customer(s) or handed over to the courier
  • Conventional Practice – Once all packed items are kept in the dispatch area, they get physically handed over to various courier/delivery boys
  • Hazard Threats
    • The delivery boys from the courier company may be potential carriers of the virus.
    • In case any employee is infected, the virus could get transmitted through the surface of the packages.
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Keep courier wise packets in a separate area with a large display tag containing the dispatch information (Manifest IDs, no. of packets, courier name, etc.) so that the person coming to pick up the shipments can identify his consignments.
    • Keep a drop-box where the receiving person can leave the signed acknowledgments of the picked-up consignment receipts.
    • Wear masks when engaging with the external courier/delivery boys who have come to pick up the consignments.
    • Clean, sanitize and disinfect the dispatch area at the end of every day once all the consignments have been picked up.

RECEIVING RETURNS OR PURCHASED ITEMS

  • Definition – Inwarding is the process of physically receiving the products into the warehouse either from a supplier or through a customer/courier returns and doing a putaway into the warehouse locations.
  • Conventional Practice – Returns and purchased items are physically received and inward almost immediately when they land in the warehouse.
  • Hazard Threats
    • Returned packets may be a carrier of the virus through the person who has delivered them
  • Safety Recommendation
    • Keep a distinct covered area in the warehouse where the senders can keep the stock and a drop-box where they can leave the documents. Ask for suppliers to send a copy of the documents electronically to verify and respond with confirmation electronically. Mention the reason for doing this in the electronic email.
    • Disinfect all returns received
    • Wash hands every time after receiving returns and doing the putaway.
    • Since the virus lingers just for a few hours on the surface, it is advisable to make physical contact with the packets after 3-4 hours of their landing in the warehouse.

The safety of our business is in our hands. These small and simple steps will help us combat coronavirus. These will protect our business and the health and well-being of our employees.

Future of E-commerce in India

India is the second biggest online market across the globe, with more than 560 million internet users, positioned distinctly behind China. There are expected to be more than 600 million internet users in India by 2021.

At present India’s business sector for internet business areas is developing yearly at a fast pace of 51%.

India is jettisoning offline commerce at an alarming pace and switching to E-commerce for most, if not all buys.

From $15 million in 2016 to a whopping $200 billion by 2026, the E-commerce sector is slated to increase by about 1200%, according to a report by financial services expert Morgan Stanley.

Where India stands currently?

Evidently, there have been vivid efforts like ‘Digital India’, availability of smartphones at throwaway prices and affordable data packages, yet vast sections of India’s population have yet to come online.

India is developing at a rapid pace and if development is to be estimated, how might we overlook the role of E-commerce in it. The number of new contestants right now raising every day and with the development rate arriving at its pinnacle, it tends to be assumed that in years to come, standard retailers will want to change to online business.

There is no doubt that with the estimated statistics of the anticipated growth of internet users, the potential of the market is non-negligible. Yet, E-commerce remains exceptionally underpenetrated with only 50 million online shoppers and out of which not all of them are active shoppers making only 20 million purchasers every month.

Major concerns relating to E-commerce

If India has to maintain its status of a global e-commerce mainstay, a few concerns are needed to be tackled.

  • There is an inherent gap in the numbers and to bridge it, the corporate sector must join hands with GoI to make sure that transitions occur effortlessly and with as little disruption as possible.
  • An all-encompassing e-commerce structure should be built up, one that incorporates best governance practices while obliging the extraordinary needs of this huge new customer base.
  • E-commerce in India has endeavoured to streamline payments and logistics, yet returns and exchanges despite everything pose an issue. Since most e-commerce companies are liberal with customers showing dissatisfaction for products paid for online, swindling returns and exchanges are on the rise online.
  • Shift to a digital economy is a must. While GoI has ventured out the execution of the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) framework, further endeavours are required by means of the development of formal banking and simple credit offices for the populace.
  • There ought to be an advancement of powerful information protection frameworks along the lines of EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), making everything fair among offline and online players in terms of indirect taxation and facilitating limitations on cross-border e-commerce transactions.
  • Internet is as yet unregulated in India with only a few cyber laws set up to check money frauds, which leaves Ecommerce companies unsure and watchful to completely immerse themselves in the Indian market. Banks must join hands with the governmental cyber cell to welcome financial safety on the internet so the Indian online customer can enter their payment information without stress and not need to experience dreary security checks.
  • Another major step is to cater to the needs of the future consumers who are to emerge from India’s tier-2 and tier-3 cities.
  • The key difficulties to defeat here are a differing exhibit of languages, a newness to computerized frameworks, and inclinations for a diverse cluster of items across micro-markets. Every one of these variables requests the usage of a fitting omnichannel system combined with a strong offline-to-online model, assisted sales and product curation, for a smooth integration of the new entrants into the wider e-commerce ecosystem.
E-commerce

Future trends of E-commerce

  • Mobile optimized: What we can envisage is there will be an improvement in mobile shopping experiences. It was first seen that sites were created that would run decently on mobiles. Now, it is anticipated that online store owners will be trying to build sites that positively run on smartphones and tablets.
  • Wearable devices: Many products such as Google Glasses, smartwatches, and other wearable devices though have not taken off in full swing are sure to enter the market in the future with greater momentum.

When these devices become increasingly popular, it will be seen that retailers, as well as e-commerce stores, will shower discounts, promotions, offers, and updates to their customers through these wearable devices.

  • Personalized ads: Prospective customers have been served personalized ads by online stores for years. It will be also seen that storekeepers put forth more attempts to offer a progressively significant personalization to clients when clients become increasingly comfortable with imparting some personal information to brands and confided in online stores.
  • Local marketing and branding: As bigger E-commerce sites offer more up to date offices and highlight and evaluate better approaches for drawing in clients, smaller stores will go to a neighbourhood base to survive. Smaller online stores will use SEO to target clients in a constrained geographic territory and consolidate it with online networking commitment to customize relations with nearby clients. Their marketing and promoting technique will spin around focuses that separate them from larger sellers.
  • Marketing automation: Most often online customers browse around for quite a while and leave the store without purchasing. Such customers can be converted into paying customers with the help of customized and targeted marketing. The pattern of using a solution like marketing automation will keep on rising by the day. Automated lead nurturing, remarketing, email personalization and analytics will help small online store owners convert more clients.

Investments so far in the Indian E-commerce sector

  • Amazon procured a 49 per cent stake in a unit of Future Group in August 2019.
  • To grow its broadband and E-commerce presence and to offer 5G services, Reliance is to invest Rs 20,0000 crore (US$ 2.86 billion) in its telecom business.
  • In September 2019, a super-app platform ‘Switch’ was launched by PhonePe to give a one-stop solution for clients integrating a few different dealer applications.
  • In tier II and tier III cities, Nykaa opened its 55th offline store in November 2019.
  • Flipkart is expected to launch more offline retail stores in India after getting acquired by Flipkart, to promote private labels in segments, for example, style and hardware.
  • 2017 was the year when the E-commerce industry in India had witnessed 21 private equity and venture capital deals worth US$ 2.1 billion and in the first half of 2018, 40 deals worth US$ 1,129 million.
  • To improve internet penetration among rural women in India, Google and Tata Trust have collaborated for the project ‘Internet Saathi’

The fate of E-commerce in India

The way India is headed straight toward development is a boon for E-commerce as the potential for online users turned shoppers is tremendous. In any case, losses have become nothing unusual for Ecommerce organizations attributable to the overwhelming heavy marketing and promotions that are done to serve the Indian Online customer.

The Indian Government is putting a valiant effort to help E-commerce in India. Despite everything, there are miles to cover before Ecommerce effectively surpasses offline businesses right now. Development is critical to changing E-commerce in India with the goal that it is irresistible to Indian shoppers. An expanded effort is additionally the primary objective that all E-commerce organizations in India must endeavour to accomplish. Universal Ecommerce mammoths like Amazon and Walmart are set to change the substance of Indian Ecommerce and are as of now working superbly.

The e-commerce industry in India provides means of financing, technology, and training to MSMEs which directly impacts them. It is expected that the Indian e-commerce industry will be the second-largest e-commerce market in the world by 2034 outperforming the US.

Small and medium-sized E-commerce companies can gain from large players by keeping customer care at the fore. That, alongside co-activity from the government, will take Ecommerce to its pinnacle in India.