Walmart-owned Flipkart on Friday said it has registered close to 35 per cent increase in sellers onboarded in 2020 as compared to last year, and has seen strong adoption of its platform by sellers as well as customers from tier II regions and beyond.
With the need for social distancing and prioritising safety, the pandemic has led to millions of people turning to e-commerce this past year, not only in metros but also in tier III regions and beyond, Flipkart said in a statement.
E-commerce has focused on ecosystem partnerships, technological advancements and new tools that enable ease of experience for first-time users to meet the needs of consumers this year while ensuring business continuity for lakhs of MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) and sellers, it added.
"With a growing reliance to fulfill daily necessities and aspirations of consumers, Flipkart witnessed a new user growth of close to 50 per cent right after the lockdown, with tier III regions and beyond registering the highest growth of 65 per cent during the 'Unlock' (July - September) phase," it said.
Consumers from tier II and beyond regions also spent the most time on the platform, signaling a continuing rise in user engagement and a shift in shopping preferences, it added.
"Flipkart saw close to a 35 per cent increase in sellers onboarded in 2020, in comparison to the same period last year.
These sellers came from tier II and tier III regions such as Tirupur, Howrah, Zirakpur, Hisar, Saharanpur, Panipat and Rajkot," the statement said.
They primarily catered to categories such as household needs, women's ethnic wear, grooming, home decor, and toys and school supplies, it added.
To ensure that first-time users are at ease while shopping, Flipkart has introduced two new capabilities to handhold them through the purchase journey - a voice assistant in grocery, and vernacular interfaces across multiple languages including Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada.
As more consumers joined the e-commerce bandwagon this year, a growing preference to shop in their local language was seen. This year, the adoption of native languages saw a 2.5x increase from pre-Covid to the festive period (January to November 2020), it added.
Also, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) adoption on the Flipkart platform increased nationally by 4.5X from January 2020 to August 2020, with Maharashtra taking the lead with a 5.2X growth. Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu were the other states that were at the top of the list for UPI adoption on the Flipkart platform.
"The emergence of 'the new essentials' has seen the creation of greater opportunities and partnerships on our marketplace. This past year, we have strived to expand our offerings across categories to ensure our consumers are well equipped with everything that they need," Rajneesh Kumar, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of Flipkart Group, said.
Flipkart has consistently worked towards creating an ecosystem that serves consumers' growing needs and also helping Indian sellers and MSMEs access the pan-India market more effectively and efficiently, he added.