Interaction and communication-based ways of shopping are emerging as a trend to look forward to. As per the industry data, the online reseller space has been projected to grow between $48 billion-$60 billion by 2022 driving the wave of social commerce.
With incremental rise in smartphone users in India, brands tend to use this medium frequently in order to stay connected to their discerning consumers. Moreover, mobile phones have also opened a new channel of retailing,which now popularly known as ‘Social Commerce’. This channel is facilitating buyers and sellers in order to make a direct connect using the internet.
In fact, social media/assisted commerce is emerging as the preferred medium for many brands to connect with their targeted community because setting up their own websites and driving traffic is a herculean task. For many sellers, social commerce sites such as Facebook, Watsapp seems to easier route over Flipkart and Amazon. Let’s find out why…
The Numbers’ Game
As per the latest findings of a joint study done by Google and Boston Consulting Group, India is home to about 50 million registered small businesses and at present. Among these, the share of online business is around one million, and they are largely running through Facebook and WhatsApp. The report also highlighted that itis expected that 10 million of these businesses will be online by 2020.
Another business advisory firm Zinnov has highlighted in its report that India’s e-commerce market aims to touch $220 Bn by 2025. The biggest beneficiary of this exponential growth are the online housewives who as resellers are going to touch $21-23 million by 2022.
The report also stated that the online reseller space has been projected to grow between $48 billion-$60 billion by 2022. The number of online resellers who are housewives resellers will increase from the current 2 million to a whopping 21-23 million by 2022! Also, the market share of online resellers is expected to rise from the current 1.2% of the Indian retail market to 5.4%.
The figures undoubtedly show the rise of social commerce among Indian masses. With WhatsApp for Business entering in to leverage this market, social e-commerce startups will face strong competition in the future.
Competition and Competition in the Space
After e-commerce companies, the emerging social commerce segment has become extremely successfully in gaining the attention of various investors. Apart from established platforms like WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook amongst others, there are a few startups who are weaving the next level of retail revolution and have become a hot favourite among investors.
For example, Bangaluru based Meeshothat started in 2015, has successfully on-boarded 20,000 resellers and more than 1,000 suppliers on its marketplace so far. Meesho has raised undisclosed amount from SAIF Partners and Y Combinator among others.
Speaking on the development, MukulArora, Managing Director, SAIF partners, said: “We are really excited about Meesho’s mission of building a new distribution channel for small/mid-sized brands, and helping resellers grow their business. This is a very India-specific opportunity with strong tail winds, and has potential to change how long tail products are sold in India.”
The company utilises fund money to hire tech and business operation teams, and for acquiring more resellers through community engagement and referrals.
Indian social commerce startup GlowRoad had raised $10 million Series B few months back. This investment was led by a Chinese investment firmcalled CDH Investments.
As the part of modus operandi, GlowRoad screens manufacturers before adding them to its platform, then its sellers decide which items to add to their stores and how to market them. The company now claims more than 100,000 resellers, 20,000 suppliers and 300,000 buyers.
Apart from aforementioned, Wooplr, do-it-yourself ,Shopmatic are few emerging players in this segment who have raised funds.