You can buy everything online—shoes, ships, sealing wax, cabbages and even cowdung patties (upley or kandey) for puja. And it’s hard for most people to remember when they last felt apprehensive about buying stuff online. By making everything available on one platform, and therefore, addressing all types of people, of all ages, e-commerce has brought about a pervasive revolution.
Gone are the long queues in front of shops during festive seasons and that jostling at eagerly-awaited sales. From the comfort of our homes, cup of tea in hand, we can order books, medicines, spectacles, clothes, grocery, fruits and vegetables from off our computers, paying in any mode we choose—electronically, or through cash on delivery. E-commerce has indeed become a one-stop destination for all our needs. And for a wide swathe of age groups: a recent survey by Flipkart, a leading e-tailer, found that while 15 per cent of its shoppers were in the 35-44 year age band (as is to be expected by Indian demographic) as high a proportion as 12 per cent were those above 45 years.
Experts estimate that the number of e-shoppers in India will cross 100 million soon, making it the world’s fastest growing market. Indians grew to the platform slowly—beginning first with books, fitness equipment, clothes, electronics and the like, but growing to buy just about everything. The craze for online shopping has made online entrepreneurship one of the most sought-after career options.
The new Indian aspiration is to be online—an aspiration that pervades all kinds of people across all kinds of cities. Small grocery outlets, tailors, chemists, opticians—everyone is thinking of going online, if not already there. Aspirations have been enhanced—everyone, whether in a small town or a huge metro, is thinking big.
Much has been written...