E-commerce firms are running their preparations for the coming festive season at full steam, expecting sales to the tune of Rs 25,600 crore ($4 billion).
E-commerce firms are running their preparations for the coming festive season at full steam, expecting sales to the tune of Rs 25,600 crore ($4 billion). The festive months from October-December are expected to account for 40% of the $10-billion annual sales e-commerce firms are likely to record this year, according to management consulting firm Technopark Advisors. The industry had reported $7 billion sales in FY15, with 40% sales coming during the festive season, the firm's senior vice-president Ankur Bisen said.
Online marketplace Snapdeal, which saw a 15x increase in traffic last Diwali, is strengthening all aspects of business operations, including logistics, supply-chain, financial and technological support, Idi Srinivas Murthy, senior vicepresident, marketing, Snapdeal said. "We have launched faster last-mile delivery solutions and a refreshed user interface. We are also developing a host of solutions for our 1,50,000 sellers," he added.
Two major areas come into sharp focus as dozens of etailers jostle with each other for greater share of festive spends delivery performance and customer satisfaction.
Mumbai-based furniture and home products marketplace Pepperfry has increased merchant base, multiplied marketing outreach, and invested in doubling its logistics capabilities by expanding fulfilment centres, delivery and assembly capabilities as well as technology capabilities, according to chief marketing officer Kashyap Vadapalli. "Our sales were up 200% (last Diwali) as we took necessary steps both at the logistics and supply end," he added.
The coming festive months are crucial not just to the ecommerce industry, but also for companies providing logistics solutions. Logistics startup Delhivery is expecting a significant surge in volumes, similar to last year. "Delhivery is continuously investing in technology, infrastructure and automation to ensure such surges are managed well during the festive season," said Mohit Tandon, co-founder, Delhivery. However, with rising demand, these companies are bound to face innumerable challenges.
"Since the logistics partners are common to almost all players, fulfilling the demands over a given period of time becomes a concern," said Praveen Sinha, managing director and founder of online fashion retailer Jabong. "It is not always easy due to the overwhelming response that we get during this time. It sometimes becomes challenging to have a constant stock of products," he added.
In the past one year mobile and internet penetration has increased further indicating that this year online purchasing will grow multi-fold compared to Diwali 2014, Kushal Nahata, CEO and cofounder of enterprise mobility platform FarEye said.
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