Consumers wait all year for the ‘Diwali sales’ when exciting offers and discounts are available on their favourite products. Most online marketplaces make over 50% of their annual sales during the holiday season. As online shopping becomes increasingly popular, every festival season, eCommerce players prepare to cater to a larger audience. This also means high sales for eCommerce players who will leave no stone unturned to bring thrifty Indian shoppers the most irresistible deals by increased advertising and marketing investments in Television commercials, newspaper ads,etc.
India is rapidly transitioning into a digital society. The proliferation of smartphones, massive increase in the number of internet users and shift to digital banking are (according to a NASSCOM report) ‘fueling the country towards a trillion-dollar digital economy by 2025.According to the report, the Indian eCommerce sector is expected to surpass the 100 billion-dollar mark by 2022.
To make the most of the opportunities that the holiday season offers, sellers will have to adapt to the needs of conveniences of the modern consumer and overcome the hurdles of selling online.
A seller’s success during the holiday season is directly proportional to their level of preparedness. Online eCommerce platforms offer a one-stop shop for online selling - from picking a product, to packing and shipping, even linking empanelled service providers - it is meant to take the guesswork out of online shopping.
The festive season provides sellers with the opportunity to scale their business with the following strategies:
Taking stock of Inventory
Ecommerce during holiday season is a completely different ball game - as sales spike over three times the usual amount, it is important for e-retailers to equip themselves with the appropriate manpower, infrastructure and logistics that can handle it. Sellers can analyse the data provided by previous sales to know which are the products that will be most in demand. Warehousing, logistical and supply chain solutions can be leveraged to give customers a seamless buying experience.
Discounts and Rewards
Consumers wait all year round to make big purchases during festive season sales. They anticipate huge discounts and offers. However, these have to be balanced such that the customer is satisfied and sellers too, Sellers don’t have to compromise too much on their profits. Ecommerce platforms offer their industry expertise that helps sellers put together an attractive mix of schemes and products
‘Consumer is king’ was true when the market was all brick and mortar and it is true even now with the emergence of eCommerce. With the amount of competition in the online marketplace, sellers must make their services stand apart with great customer service and communication.
Customers buy more than your product, they buy YOU - your brand and what your brand stands for. Sellers should take advantage of their fulfilment services to offer a unique and handcrafted experience to customers such as personal greetings, buyer-seller messaging, 100% delivery promises, zero percent EMI, easy cancellation, full refund and exchange guarantees. This goes a long way in maintaining a good buyer-seller relationship.
Having a proper inventory management system is crucial during this time; online businesses should ensure that the right proportion of stock is available during the right time so as to make sure deliveries are not delayed due to the sudden increase in demand. This also means that more inventory needs to be financed, therefore time sensitive working capital needs must be assessed correctly, working capital has to be shored up to finance advance purchases of stocks. Ecommerce players offer credit and lending solutions like Amazon Seller Lending Program. Lastly, advertising your products in the right way to the correct audience will go a long way in boosting sales. Sellers should invest in effective data analysis tools and techniques to understand the best way to approach the same. Further, eCommerce players provide sellers access to a huge customer base, and even help in building their brand.
A successful festive season for a business is one where the customer is provided with a happy and satisfying experience while maintaining focus on business targets.
Sellers should optimize the operational efficiency of their business this year around, by capitalizing on an array of best-in-class services offered by eCommerce market players. They should maximize the benefits of their advertising spends which will augment online sales and create avenues for new markets and customers. To conclude, sellers should motivate and prepare their teams to make the most of this festive season and reap the rewards of their work.
Sandeep is the Chief Executive Officer at Prione where he is currently responsible for all business functions. Prior to joining Prione, Sandeep has had stints with Cognizant and Amazon. He is passionate about empowering entrepreneurs and businesses in India, especially SMBs and MSMEs to experience multi-fold growth in the growing e-commerce space. Sandeep’s vision is to make Prione India’s most trusted partner in the online marketplace by enabling a million small and medium businesses sell online. He obtains an MBA from INSEAD, France and a degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Hyderabad. Sandeep is a car and bike enthusiast and sports aficionado – closely following Cricket, Lawn Tennis and Formula One.