The COVID-19 crisis has provided an opportunity for the Indian e-commerce sector to showcase its relevance during a crisis. CB Insights reveals right from traditional businesses to judiciary, everyone is embracing digitization. As a result, the e-commerce sector’s revenues in India have been growing at 112 per cent and 79 per cent in the past two weeks. Everyone from traditional businesses to regulators to judiciary is embracing digitization, signaling a bullish trend for the sector.
Lockdowns across the world have pushed physical stores to the background compelling traditional retailers to look at online channels as their only saviors. Retailers are exploring innovative, cost-efficient and technologically superior formats. A case in point is Starbucks which is expanding its convenience-led formats such as curbside pick-up, drive through and mobile-only pickup locations. Few offline retailers are also offering their buyers the option of placing their orders online and taking delivery/exchange offline.
Rise in freelancing and homeschooling trends
As travel ban across the world restricted online professional consultation for chronic cases, the trend of hiring freelancers via self-employed professionals has accelerated. Similarly earlier a remote alternative to traditional education, home schooling is being considered as a serious option by almost 15 per cent of Indian parents, reveals a survey by ParentCircle. Homeschooling also provides retired and far-flung teachers an opportunity to be economically independent.
E-commerce emerges as the new action zone
As restrictions in physical movement has made cyberspace the new zone of action, the Indian government is introducing appropriate laws to democratize digital access and control the effects of monopolization of digital market places. It has already introduced a draft e-commerce policy to facilitate the setting up of a regulator for the sector.
The promising future of e-com logistics
E-commerce logistics is emerging as one of the most promising avenues for cash flows as malls and theatre properties are being converted into warehouses. One of the largest e-commerce companies in the world, Prologis Inc has managed to keep 95 per cent of its facilities open during the pandemic by converting them into warehouses. This trend is being emulated by many other companies and is likely to gain traction in the near future and mid-term.
Thus a significant Indian proportion of Indian population has managed to survive the constraints of COVID-19 by embracing e-commerce. The trend is likely to gain more traction in future as fashion companies will aim to start afresh and look forward from an independent perspective.