Why Indians Do Not Buy Online? seems to be question on everybody’s mind at the moment – a few hundred comments and various other perspectives later, we thought about it long and hard and decided to offer our own two cents to the matter. We solve day-to-day problems of e-commerce vendors across 40 different countries, I guess we’ve earned our right!
The whole debate centers around the fact that Indians don’t buy online as much as their American counterparts and the primary reason behind that is Indians are not comfortable with the concept of self-service and need to be offered help. A point well-made, everybody in this World likes to be taken care of and served to, and nobody more so than Indians, it is a part of our culture that we cannot deny.
Now let’s get into the debate, let’s breakdown the e-commerce audience. The young audience of India, who’ve grown up with a heavy western influence have taken to e-commerce like a fish to water – they have access to broadband and money and have no inhibitions, so they simply buy, no questions asked.
Next comes a group that uses e-commerce sites to check and compare prices, weigh different options and end up buying it a retail store. They are willing to take multiple steps, but are hesitant at the final step.
This is a huge segment that can be tapped into. Let’s bring in a service like ClickDesk, where you engage with the audience, proactively offer help, walk them through the website, show them different products – it’s like gently holding their hands, helping them abandon their insecurities and getting them to the other side of the road.
This is a survey by eMarketer researchers, which says, retailers World over have reached a tipping point in adopting live chat. The survey reveals that people were very positive to proactive invitations to chat and by next year almost 75 percent of the online shopping population would have engaged in a live chat conversation. One out five people prefer live chat as the primary means of communication to contact a retailer, regardless of their concern. Now this was a survey of online buyers in US and UK, if it were India, the numbers would definitely be higher.
We’re not saying, live chat adoption is going to solve all of India’s e-commerce problems, but it’s a proven and feasible solution that has increased sales all across the World.
India is a ridiculously complex demographic that is ridden with intricate layers of challenges. E-commerce vendors cannot work around issues such as Credit Card penetration, Broadband penetration, lack of infrastructure, need of touch and feel etc, which is why they have to take the innovative route and do things differently.
The whole debate has been bought out by some of the brightest minds in the Indian e-commerce industry, hence cannot be dismissed or brushed aside as a personal opinion. Now that all the problems plaguing the industry are out of the bag, it’s time for these same bright minds to start searching for answers.