Electronic Commerce is more than just buying and selling products online. It also includes the entire online process of developing, marketing, selling, delivering, servicing and paying for products and services. India has shown tremendous growth in the E-commerce segment. With an internet user base of over 300 million, India has third largest internet population after US & China.
The decades between 1950 to 1990 were dominated by the Global trading organizations, especially from Japan. There was a time when these trading organizations dominated world’s top 10 organizations on the Fortune 500 list. The main reason for their dominance was their powers in the areas of information and communication.
The decade of the nineties saw the emergence of the Internet as the means of universal communication and information. The power source of the Japanese trading firms was gradually lost when the Internet started becoming almost universal in the application in the business communities world over.
Without a doubt, a variety of ongoing developments are feeding into the overall growth of the e-commerce sector. Businesses are not just focusing on a digital store selling some nice-enough items, but instead they’re trying to create new markets, plug the unexplored terrains, create a shopping experience that consumers can enjoy as they browse, provide round-the-clock services and meet the overall customer service expectations at all times- before, during, and after a purchase.
E-commerce sales continue to grow on a yearly basis, yet despite this, only 7.7% of all retail sales took place online in the US in the first quarter of 2016.1 that means e-commerce has a lot of room to grow if it is to catch up with non-digital retail sales. In order to determine what direction this growth will take, we investigated the current e-commerce trends and their impact on the market.
There’s no doubt that Augmented Reality is the next big thing in the technology world. I’m not saying this because of being a Black Mirror fan, but because every other week there’s a new AR app released and what used to be a futuristic dream seems to be finally coming true.
So what if you are running an e-commerce store or you are a retailer, what can you do to prevent yourself from being out-of-business in the next five years?
First, if I was a retailer, I would start investing in becoming a brand, meaning I would take a significant part of my profits and pour it into R&D to create new products. As a retailer, you already have the benefit of knowing what sells and what doesn’t. So why not start your own brand that might be Private Label at first and move into creating your own unique products.
Second, I would start focussing on aligning myself with the gatekeepers like Amazon, Google, and Apple. You could sell your products on Amazon as an FBA, become a Retailer that works together with Google Express and integrate Apple Pay into your App, Website, and Store.
Third, I would figure out, which IoT devices, I would be able to collaborate with. If I am selling perishables or detergent, I would reach out to LG or Samsung to provide products and figure out how packaging can work together with the device. Coffee beans, washing detergent or even microwave meals, could collaborate and become the product of choice for the IoT devices of the future.
E-Commerce is here to stay with WOW IT solutions.
- Social Media: Majority of online buying decisions are made on Social Media. Social network like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest etc have become a medium for easy log-in and purchase.
- Drone Delivery: Companies have been working their way around to innovate the delivery process to shorten human effort as well as time. The answer to these problems is Delivery by Drones. DGCA is now fast-tracking the process of issuing guidelines for the use of drones for civil purposes in India.
- App only Approach: Statistics suggest the future of internet lies in mobiles. Experts say more than 580 million people in India will use the Internet by 2018, and 70-80% of them will access the Web on mobile phones. This will cause all major players to switch to app only model.
- Google’s Buy Now Button: Google is reportedly working on its own “Buy Now” style button that would allow e-shoppers search for products on Google and purchase them with a single click, right through Google’s own search results page.
- Artificial Intelligence: As the e-commerce space gets saturated, investors looking for innovative use of technology are zeroing in on companies developing artificial intelligence (AI) solutions.
Over the next 5 years we likely won’t see any drastic changes to e-commerce or how we buy goods in general; however, we’ll see early adopters begin to experiment with what consumers will use in the next 10-20 years. Next stop, the year 2027!