labels: retail, marketing - general, e-business
Santa lights up the e-retail highwaynews
23 December 2006

Indian e-retailers have been gearing up these past few months for the onset of the Christmas and New Year festive season, says a new report from the Internet and Mobile Association of India.

Mumbai: Indian e-retailers have been gearing up these past few months for the onset of the Christmas and New Year festive season. With e-commerce booming and the new found confidence in online shopping it is clear with consumers of all ages and backgrounds now using the internet to shop.

E-retailers say they expect an increase in their revenues by over 50 per cent and the overall traffic by over 75 per cent over last year as there has been a huge increase in consumer confidence in online shopping.

Marketing experts believe online shopping will continue to grow as consumers opt to avoid crowded shopping centres, parking problems and become more comfortable about using retail facilities on the net.

Retailer say they have also ensured a secure online transaction environment.

Most of the websites are wearing the 'Christmas look' with a Santa Claus, a snowman, ginger bread man, with snowflakes, Christmas trees, mistletoe and bells. Fabmall.com has designed a special store. This store retails Christmas trees, wines, plum cakes, Christmas puddings, flowers, hampers, special Christmas books, music and movies, give-aways like Santa carvings and perfumed candles, among others.

While Cbazaar.com has introduced a line up of current fashion trends with about 300 new designs including saris, salwar suits, tunics, bridal clothing and fashion jewellery.

K Vaitheeswaran, chief operating officer, Fabmall.com, says, "We have launched a digital camera store to coincide with the new year. This store has all leading camera brands like Canon, Casio, Kodak, Sony etc and almost all the models have discounts. Some cameras have discounts up to 43 per cent till the new year. There are also some promotions running especially on winter wear and books."

Service also seems to be a key factor to woo consumers online.

Rajesh Nahar from operations and support, Chennaibazaar.com, says, "Chennaibazaar.com for this Christmas season is offering gifts delivery service by Santa Claus personally on Christmas eve. This service is available only for deliveries in Chennai. For new year we have midnight surprise where we offer delivery on new year's eve."

Rahul Sethi, senior manager, e-retailing, Pantaloon Retail (India) Limited, says, "For the festive season we have launched a new property called 'half off' where we are offering 50 per cent discount on MRP on select products. The products change every week."

On the other hand giants are busy innovating new ideas to keep the consumers online. This year, there is another way for children to share their Christmas wish lists with Santa Claus. Using Windows Live Messenger, parents can spend time with their kids chatting in real-time with Santa online.

Users will need to add Santa's address, Northpole@live.com, to their Windows Live Messenger contact list and instantly open a conversation window to communicate with Saint Nick. Kids will enjoy immediate responses from the jolly big man himself through an interactive online chat, and they can even visit Santa's page on Windows Live Spaces at www.santaonspaces.spaces.live.com.

Filling Santa in on Christmas wishes and asking all about how the elves are doing or what's new at the North Pole, are a few of the things children can talk to Santa about. Santa can even tell children where they stand on his list: naughty or nice. Starting Christmas Eve morning, children can check in with Santa through Windows Live Messenger to follow his journey around the world.


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Santa lights up the e-retail highway