How Social Commerce is redefining India’s E-commerce Ecosystem

Social Commerce: The best of both worlds model

The word is self-explanatory in itself. Social Commerce puts together the highly engaged and large social media and the established popular conventional e-commerce model. Simply putting it on social media to buy and sell was never a new idea; but it was not coordinated or very large-scale. As the cause, the pandemic behaved. People lose access to essentials overnight. It was no longer easy or safe to order from platforms and stuff was still happening on the side of Covid. The MSMEs stepped up and found a massive opportunity across channels such as WhatsApp, Facebook, and Instagram to do business and appeal to customers.

The Consumer in Social Commerce Ecosystem: It’s all about trust and convenience

The Bain & Company study also sheds light on what deters e-commerce from non-transacting customers. It’s an absence of faith. Social commerce brings a sense of culture, connection, and confidence to the experience of shopping. The report reports that 75% of transactions are made by a recognised agency. This is also valid for Tier 2 and Tier 3 customers who find it difficult to order online despite being totally comfortable with smartphones and the internet: digital privacy, complicated UI, lack of understanding of return policies, fear of a faulty product, and annoyance about not having a human link to resolve queries.

The Seller in Social Commerce Ecosystem: Building Micro-Entrepreneurs

The social-first model helps small merchants and retailers to remain ahead of the curve. In reality, the Bain & Company report reports that 85% of all social-commerce players are made up of small sellers. It further highlights the model’s ability to empower more than 40 million small businesses and entrepreneurs in India. Compared to e-commerce sites, it is an opportunity for these companies to gain consumers at low costs on the basis of faith, loyalty, and word of mouth. Sellers gain access to not only a large audience base, but also a deeper understanding of consumer behaviour, particularly in small-town India, through social exchange.

The 2021 trends of Social Commerce we can expect to see

While social commerce in India has gained widespread popularity, its real potential remains untapped. Multiple paths are yet to be explored. With the bulk of the audience moving from Facebook and Snapchat to Instagram; digital marketers have become the latest light of opportunities. Instagram has begun to send out specialised features and handles on the website to certain markets. It is likely to become the next big thing in the social commerce ecosystem; with more and more individuals making the transition to Instagram. On such platforms, we can also expect voice and vernacular to be major growth drivers; with small-town India being a major online shopping audience base. The environment is certainly evolving and quicker than ever; but understanding this transition and becoming agile is what will help players in the social commerce ecosystem. Until the next wave of change takes over, act and exploit the chance.

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