Consumers, not just in the metro cities, but in the interiors of India are adapting to the evolving fashion industry. They are becoming more experimental in their choices because of the flexibility and convenience offered by e-commerce. Tier II and-III cities now stand as priority strategic markets for many fashion retailers and e-commerce platforms. This is primarily because of an increase in disposable income, deeper internet penetration, rising exposure to new age media and influencers, innovative marketing, and technological advancements in these cities. This has also led to an increase in advertisements, technology, digital, and traditional marketing tools by brands to build prominence in these Tier II and-III cities.
Altering Consumer Behavior
The shopping behavior of consumers is evolving in the smaller cities at a brisk pace; they are becoming increasingly aware of the latest fashion brands and trends because of the accessibility and flexibility offered by online shopping. Consumers are willingly scanning their favorite brands online to shop in the comfort of their homes. Fashion e-commerce continues to boom after the pandemic, not only because it provides accessibility and affordability, but also because consumers are growing fond of the hassle-free process of surfing their favorite brands, buying with one click, and availing of fast delivery and easy return facilities.
Additionally, many brands have started introducing specially curated designs and collections to offer uniqueness and cater to the specific demands of the non-metro cities. Amazon Fashion delivers 100 percent serviceable pin codes in India with assured 2-day delivery in more than 200 top cities. We have witnessed an increased penetration and coverage of online shopping from Tier II and-III regions with more than 80 percent of our new shoppers from these markets. In terms of fashion, we have witnessed shoppers from these regions opting for ethnic wear such as Lehenga Cholis, Sarees, Kurta, Sandals, and summer essentials like Shirts, Tops, Sneakers, or Sandals.
In Beauty, customers are preparing for the season with Serums and Day Creams, Face, and Hair Cleansers with rising interest in treatments like oils and masks, and ingredient-based products like Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid, Niacinamide, and more. Within Makeup, we’ve seen increasing demand for face and eye makeup.
Cashless payments have witnessed steady growth and acceptance in Tier-II and-III markets, hence driving growth for online shopping and widening the scope for e-commerce to penetrate these geographies to gain a larger share. During the pandemic, nine out of ten Indians preferred digital wallets citing it made ‘shopping easier’ as the main reason. This rapid adoption of digital payments supplemented by rising e-commerce transactions is fueling the payment gateway market growth in India.
Vernacular Languages to Woo Shoppers
To remain relevant in today’s time, e-commerce is providing vernacular services to further push consumers to adopt online shopping and provide a holistic experience to increase consideration and retain consumers from the non-metro cities. Customers can shop on Amazon in 8 languages, including Hindi, English, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, and the newly launched Marathi and Bengali. They can read product information, manage their account, make payments, and track their orders in these regional languages.
Influencers are Transforming the Fashion Industry
Social media influencers are immensely impacting the shopping preferences of consumers in Tier II and-III cities. The constant exposure to branded content with a quick CTA (click to action) option has led many consumers to take the online shopping route, in the desire to follow the newest trends and jump on the bandwagon. The reach of rising influencers from these cities has grown enormously in recent years. Regional influencers continue to curate content vital to their distinct and regional style, accumulating a larger following and altering the fashion industry. In India, social commerce shoppers, who account for 53 percent of total online shoppers, are expected to reach 228 million at the end of 2022, a 45 percent increase from the current consumer base, as consumers are exploring new ways of shopping for products online through social media apps. With growing programs like the Fashion Influencer Program, Live Shopping feature, and more, Amazon has been partnering with creators to cater to both the information and product needs of these customers.
Steadily Shifting Dynamics
With shifting market dynamics and the increasing popularity of online purchasing, the fashion e-commerce marketplace has grown more adaptable in engaging with Tier II and-III cities that provide considerable prospects with increasing competition, cutting edge technology, and improving marketing and digital spending in non-metro cities. The fashion industry has become more customer-oriented as opposed to being purely business-focused, since tailoring consumer experiences and letting customers lead, their own way is seen as the way forward.
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