India's E-Commerce Groups Target Online Grocery Shoppers

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Key Points:

  • India has emerged as one of the world’s biggest e-commerce markets, expected to reach a market value of as much as 350 billion dollars in 2030, despite the traditional dominance of the kiryana store retail markets in the country.
  • Companies are taking advantage of high mobile usage and digitization rates in the nation to reach customers through digital e-commerce channels for a range of products, including groceries.
  • Strong growth performance of e-commerce companies like Big Basket are potential targets for big investors like TATA Digital.

Every morning in Delhi, Big Basket’s huge warehouse of 30,000 square feet is bustling with activity. Big Basket is one of many online grocery stores in India that have perfected online order processing to a high degree of precision and meticulousness. Each order at Big Basket is assigned to multiple workers called ‘pickers’ who operate in their specific aisles. A picker funnels grocery products like personal care products, food, and general household items to an employee who completes the order.

india's e-commerce groups target online grocery shoppers simple global

Big Basket Leading the Way!

Big Basket’s successful order fulfillment strategy relies on having many pickers in a single warehouse. but it is far more efficient at fulfilling a single order. This edge allows the company to easily venture into the online food-selling market, which is a tough category to compete in.

India has recently emerged as one of the largest e-commerce markets in Asia. According to statistics, the e-commerce market in India was worth almost $22 billion in 2018 alone, a figure predicted by co-founder Hari Menon in 2014. India is currently experiencing an e-commerce boom, and forecasts suggest that this trend will continue to as much as 350 billion dollars worth of revenues into 2030.

India’s retail consumer goods market is still dominated by smaller kiryana stores (the equivalent of mom-and-pop consumer stores seen in Western markets). According to some estimates, kiryana stores account for over 75% of the Indian retail market scene. Digitization of these stores is helping the retail sector to continue to control much of the space.

Today, companies like Big Basket operate with other companies such as Localbanya and Zopnow, which offer similar services, but with different business models. Unlike Big Basket’s direct online ordering and fulfillment strategy, these retailers buy grocery items from existing brick-and-mortar stores like Metro Cash & Carry and Hypercity. Other ventures focus on mobile apps that link customers to local kiryana stores. More retailers like Amazon, Flipkart, and Snapdeal also serve online shoppers, although they specialize in multiple product categories. And Indian customers have been quick to adopt online shopping.

big basket leading the way

Big Basket, like the online shopping market, does not appear to be slowing down. The company is part of the renowned TATA Group in India and operates in more than 40 cities as of 2022. Just this September, the e-grocery giant was valued at $3.5 billion and looking to raise as much as $200 million in investments from TATA Digital. This positive outlook comes after a strong business performance that has led to 40% annual growth.

What Does the Future Hold for eCommerce in India?

The emergence of online grocery stores in India is a major trend in the country. With the increase in smartphone ownership, more people are now turning to online grocery shopping. In addition, the outbreak of COVID-19 has made consumers more likely to purchase groceries online.

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