Click and Buy: Online Shopping in India

Posted on May 19, 2012 in Specials

By Neelima Ravindran:

“There is a little bit of magic found in buying something new.”
-Rebecca Bloom.

Shopping is not mere buying. It is an experience much more than paying cash and taking home things. Shopping connoisseurs say that it is not true shopping if you don’t use at least three of your senses when in a store! Much need to see, touch, smell, and taste and try out to authenticate the things to be bought. But an increasing number of Indian consumers are sacrificing this traditional practice for something simple and nimble.

Online shopping has become a rage among internet users and last couple of years have seen a steady increase of online buyers. A recent web survey has found that over 70% of active net users have made online purchases of airline tickets and reservations. The long winding queues for rail, bus, movie tickets have been replaced by the click of a button from the comfort of home. Online retailing that has been active in ticketing and travel sector have spread to other areas too with many important players and leading companies opening themselves to the potential of online retail industry and launching shopping portals. From books to clothes, electronic items to groceries, net are the new supermarket of the new generation. Fast paced life and strenuous professions have taken away a huge chunk of our time and buying online reduces the efforts of traditional shopping giving a delightful experience of having the markets of the world just a click away. A key reason for an increase in this kind of e-shopping is that customers can compare prices and get the best value for money in addition to the convenience, privacy and discounts available as the cost of running an online store is considerably cheaper than the traditional establishments.

Online shopping is not without its pitfalls too. Credit cards frauds and online shopping rackets are at large in this business. There are occasions where what you see online and what you get in hand are erroneously different, which is one of the core advantages of in-store buying. Return and refund policies of many online sellers are not customer friendly. Safety of the website as well as your account information and other personal details should be kept in mind while shopping on the web. Risk protection norms should be followed for all transactions.

The cons aside, the rising penetration of internet and mobile devices even to smaller cities and rural areas have resulted in a steady rise of the online shoppers. Access to international brands, shopping at the convenience of their home and time, comparable prices, among other advantages are driving more and more of Indian consumers to e-shopping. The retailer can benefit from this boom by providing better presentation of products, discounts, simple check out procedures, improved sales support, follow up, to attract the ever growing customer base. The compulsive shopper, the impulsive shopper, the last minute shopper, the need based shopper, there is something for everyone in the whole wide world of online shopping. So click, buy and enjoy!