A Word from Our CEO: eCommerce at the Internet Retail Expo, 2013
February 5, 2013
As an emerging economy, India is poised to lead the next wave of eCommerce innovation and adoption on a large scale. We do have a lot of work to do before we can think of ourselves as key players, however.
As an industry, being at the Internet Retail Expo (IRE) 2013, has given us a lot to think about. Two months into the first quarter, we all know that mobile browsing will increase exponentially. As we see this growth take hold, we need to stay proactively mindful of the impending changes standing right around the corner.
For one, we must be stringent about optimizing websites for mobile use, i.e. higher integration of interactive design and faster load times across multiple touchpoints. We need to recognize the vitality of Social Media as an agent of change and mobilization. We need to create campaigns that aren’t just engaging but are also human enough to be self-sustaining. We also have to accept that although eCommerce is still evolving, its advent cannot be ignored.
The average Indian consumer has very little faith or trust vis-a-vis online retailers, and with good cause. As it stands now, eCommerce is not a profitable venture in our country because the retail landscape in India is extremely fragmented with not enough awareness or education about online shopping. Indian consumers have also complained about the lack of a seamless and secure experience, beginning with point of purchase right up until checkout. Credit cards or PayPal? C.O.D or bank transfers? Coupons or sales? The security of the market store or the apprehension associated with websites getting hacked and sensitive information getting leaked? Sometimes, going elsewhere isn’t such a tough call.
On the other hand, that gap is exactly where our greatest opportunity lies. As we disperse to incorporate the sound advice at the IRE, we find ourselves in a unique space to educate offline retailers about the necessity of becoming visible in an online space, and this is where we’ll establish ourselves as leaders. 2013 is promising to be a year more dynamic than usual.
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