labels: e-business
Online sales record Rs115 crore this festive seasonnews
Our Corporate Bureau
04 November 2005

Mumbai: Online sales during the festive Diwali and Ramzan period recorded sales of Rs115 crore a 117 per cent increase from the Rs53 crore last year. This is amongst the latest findings of a survey released by Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) an industry trade organization announced record Diwali sales.

Some highlights of the survey:

  • Online sales clocked across 8,10,000+ transactions in three weeks delivered a 135 per cent increase in transactions (number of transactions 2004-05 during festival season: 3,45,000), with the average value per transaction being Rs1420.
  • These figures clearly show that online shopping has truly come of age and consumers are keen to shop on the net. Festival shopping is the prime time for multi-channel retailers to attract new shoppers;
  • Effective customer communication on products plus reduced shipping costs and timely delivery has helped online marketers to seize a slice of the Rs 115 crore sales;
  • These purchases accounted for 10 per cent+ of total Indian online sales estimated at Rs 1180 crores for this year sans travel categories over a three week festive period.

According to Preeti Desai, president, IAMAI "With ecommerce revenues to cross Rs1180 crore for 2005-06 (IAMAI estimate) and a growing internet user base currently at 32+ million its been a sparkling Diwali and Eid in 2005-06 as ecommerce sales crossed to a whopping Rs115 crore in three weeks period. Online retailers have consistently seen growing consumer interest in buying Diwali and Eid gifts online."

"Each festival season Indians seem to be leaving their shopping for the last minute and this year was no exception - 61 per cent of the gifts sold were in the two weeks prior to Diwali, compared to 54 per cent per cent last year, adds Desai.

The key reasons for the strong growth in the last two years is because of a broad product selection and the ever-expanding range of unique and unusual gift ideas offered as well as increased consumer confidence in shopping on the internet.

She adds, "We are fairly confident about the next wave of ecommerce where the ''younger super internet consumers'' who use the internet in almost every facet of their life will push internet sales to levels most people are not likely to believe."

Statistics on Diwali and Eid 2005 online sales
The reason for the rise in revenues is that consumers have become more accustomed to purchasing online and look to the internet to find comprehensive product information, competitive prices and easy gift delivery across geographies within India and outside.

  • Approximately 4,15,000+ lakh Indians made purchases online this Diwali across more than 8,10,000 transactions. Shoppers were price and value conscious - Diwali shopping ranged from as little at Re1 to Rs1,40,000. Consumers could choose from a rich online catalogue of more than 3,60,000 products. (Re1 products refer to auctions)
  • In terms of products, different categories faced mixed fortunes. As last years, consumer electronics, such as digital cameras, mobile phones and accessories, DVD players and microwaves topped Diwali shopping list of consumers in most major cities. Followed by gifts (mithai, chocolates, dry fruit and flower hampers), apparel, jewellery and accessories (mainly watches) crackers and educational toys
  • Spurred by improved site usability, wider product assortment, better services, and competitive prices consumers spent on multiple transactions online consumers had an appetite for higher-end products boosting numbers of products above Rs7,000. Gift certificates are still popular as sent instantly via email
  • Across various member sites the most active online shopping days were typically five days before Diwali and Eid from October 28 to November 3, 2005, saw a dramatic surge in transactions. Dhanteras and Bhau Beej on October 30 and November 3, respectively saw a lift in silver and gold coins as well as jewellery
  • Almost all websites offered 24-hour express delivery for ''last minute shoppers" on specific categories.
  • This Diwali shoppers spent more time in searching and comparing products with maximum shopping orders being placed between 6pm to 10pm. interestingly consumers transacted from office, home & cybercafé.

Lessons that retailers learnt from last festival sales included

  • Look back, prepare and stock up - this time they had the right pulse regarding consumer demand and were prepared for surge in order which usually comes in the last three weeks.
  • This year retailers incentivised consumers with personalised incentives to shop early.
  • Retailers kept consumers informed post the shopping process regarding when they or their friends and family will receive products and services bought online.
  • This Diwali online retailers were well prepared for the 15 per cent new or first time consumers who come back and buy through the year and they simplified the buying process and optimized delivery service to create a great first time impression.

 


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Online sales record Rs115 crore this festive season