Brand websites have witnessed 88% order volume growth as compared to 32% order volume growth on marketplaces
- The report revealed that the overall e-commerce has not just recovered but witnessed an order-volume growth of 17% as of June 2020.
- The consumer buying patterns and preferences have changed significantly with categories like health & pharma and FMCG & agriculture seeing a surge.
- The number of consumers shopping directly from the brand’s website is increasing at much faster pace than marketplaces.
Brand websiteshave witnessed 88% order volume growth as compared to 32% order volume growth on marketplaces.
June 2020 did not only see a recovery in e-commerce but also a 17% growth in order-volume, according to an impact report on the e-commerce industry by e-commerce focused SaaS platform
The report titled ‘E-commerce Trends Report 2020’ extensively covers trends related to e-commerce growth, region-wise consumer demand, return orders and D2C trends and how it affects the industry in the post COVID-19 world. It also focuses on the growth of e-commerce in India along with detailing changing consumer behaviour and the industry response to address the newly emerging e-commerce trends. It also throws light on the D2C approach and omnichannel solutions adopted by the e-commerce players, which will significantly shape the supply chain ecosystem in India, and impact the industry in the long run. Additionally, the report also touches upon the initial e-commerce recovery across different segments as we prepare to enter the post COVID-19 world and comprehends its impact on different aspects of the e-commerce ecosystem like returns, shipping, developing brand websites and technology adoption.
Key highlights of the report:
E-commerce in the post COVID-19
After the lockdown was announced, the problem of limited availability and fear of getting infected
created a new shift in consumer behaviour and their buying patterns leading to a new wave of online
● The overall e-commerce has not just recovered but witnessed an order-volume growth of 17% as of June 2020
● The consumer buying patterns and preferences have changed significantly with categories like health & pharma and FMCG & agriculture seeing a surge and exponential growth, with the rise number of first-time online shoppers
● After e-commerce resumed operations post COVID-19, the return rate has seen a dip of ~10-30% depending on the category. The reduced return can be attributed to the new safety norms, increasing demand for
● There is an increasing trend of consumers buying directly from brands & websites. Retail brands are now strengthening their online capabilities and opting for different approaches to connect with consumers
● In the last one year, there has been a considerable growth of 65% for brands developing their own website, which led to an increase in self-shipped orders. However, the percentage of self-shipped orders declined from 35% in Feb 2020 to 30% in Jun 2020. The decline in self- shipped orders can be attributed to brands trusting marketplace logistics due to better service levels and lower unpredictability during current uncertain times.
Brands going direct to consumer
● As the e-commerce ecosystem matures in India, there is an increasing trend of brands going directly to consumers to offer a great experience to its patrons. While the brands have created their own website, the brands continue to sell on the marketplace as it still drives the majority of the order volume
● The number of consumers shopping directly from the brand’s website is increasing at much faster pace than marketplaces. Brand websites have witnessed 88% order volume growth as compared to 32% order volume growth on marketplaces
● The top 3 segments that have seen an increasing penetration of D2C brands are Beauty & Wellness, Fashion & Accessories and FMCG & Agricultural sectors.
● In the last one year, there has been a considerable growth of 65% for brands developing their own website, which has also led to an increase in self-shipped orders India’s e-commerce annual growth pre- covid
● India’s e-commerce sector has been on a constant growth, the e-commerce order volume saw a growth of ~20% while the GMV witnessed a surge of ~23% with an average order size of ~Rs 1100
● Beauty & wellness is one sector that has witnessed an unprecedented order volume growth of ~130% followed by FMCG & agriculture and health & pharma with a growth of 55% and 38% respectively. These are emerging sectors with potential to accelerate e-commerce growth in India.
Rising demand from hinterland of India
● All leading e-commerce companies are focusing on cities beyond the metropolitan cities. Currently, Tier II and beyond cities contribute around 66% of the total online consumer demand in India and this share is expected to rise in the coming years
● Tier III and beyond cities witnessed 53% growth, making it the fastest-growing region. It also observed that the top 5 cities of Tier III contribute only ~22% of the overall Tier III order volume, however in metro’s the top 5 cities constitute 90% of overall order volume
● The top 3 states, by e-commerce volumes, are Delhi NCR 1 , Maharashtra, and Karnataka, and they constitute 65% of overall consumer demand
Return orders on decline
● Managing returns is an integral part of running an ecommerce business. The total percentage returns (as a percentage of forward dispatches) saw a decline of ~13% as compared to last year and it constitutes ~17% of the overall order volume as compared to ~20% in the previous year 2
● E-commerce companies have invested extensively to reduce COD returns as they constitute large part overall returns. The return percentage on COD orders have reduced from 27% in 2019 to 20% in 2020 and for prepaid orders, the total return has decreased from 12% in 2019 to 11% in 2020. Even after such remarkable reduction in COD returns, it's still almost 2X returns on prepaid orders
1 Includes NCR region: Haryana (Gurgaon, Faridabad, Jhajjar and Sonepat) and Uttar Pradesh (Gautam Budha Nagar, Ghaziabad, Baghpat)
2 All year-on-year data points by Unicommerce are for the period of February 2020 - February2019
● Another interesting trend observed is Tier II and beyond cities have seen a significant reduction of ~23% in overall returns. This change can be attributed to increasing, technology adoption improved last-mile delivery and customer centric return policies.
Commenting on the report release,
so that it can help the brands and e-tailers plan their e-commerce strategy much more comprehensively.”