Though over 70 per cent of the over 90-million-strong online shoppers are influenced by the information they glean from the Net, only 16 per cent of them actually end up buying online. It can be noted that the online shoppers’ population has crossed the 90-million-mark this year in the country, a growth of over eight times from 2013 when online shopping began to take roots here, says a BCG report. “Unlike most other markets, only 5 per cent of purchases, accounting for 16 per cent of the value, are made after consumers followed a mixed pathway, using online and offline touch-points. This means that purely offline pathway remains dominant, accounting for 78 per cent of purchases and 58 per cent of value. “Only 16 per cent purchases are done an online pathway from beginning to end, although those purchases represented 26 per cent of value,” says the report. What is more interesting is that while 43 per cent of new car-buyers in cities select the model they want through online, but buy from a dealer.
The same is the case with most other items, especially mobiles and large appliances as 40-50 per cent purchases of mobiles and major appliances by urban consumers are made online and offline. But where online platforms for a category are well established, consumers use purely online pathways. For example, only 10 per cent transactions for hotel rooms and airline tickets are done offline now, says the survey. When it comes to apparel, however, 32 per cent are willing to buy accessories online unseen, but only 22 per cent will buys shoes online. The other 78 per cent still go to a store to see the new styles and try them on.
Frequent online shoppers are also 3.5 times more likely to follow a purely online pathway for purchases as they are willing to buy big-ticket items online, as well-11 per cent have bought major appliances, mobile phones, or furniture online compared to 1 per cent of occasional online shoppers. Because for most products and services, consumers mostly those in urban centres, are doing the research online and buy offline, according to the report that surveyed 600 urban consumers who are active Internet users. Despite a litany of online grocery platforms, the survey finds that almost all fresh-food purchases are made offline while 1-2 per cent transactions are online and offline.