Silver lining: Smartphone shipments via online channels grow 26% in Q2

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Updated: September 14, 2019 7:05:57 AM

Mi Super Sale, HONOR Days, Flipkart Summer Carnival, Big Shopping Days, Amazon Summer sale, Amazon Fab Fest, Knock Out Offers, Realme 1ST anniversary sale, and Month End Mobile Fest were some of the most popular events during the quarter, the research revealed.

Smartphone shipments, online channels, offline segment, Xiaomi, Realme, XiaomiThe top five brands — from Xiaomi and Realme — captured 84% of the total online market.

Smartphone shipments from the online mode in India grew 26% year-on-year during the second quarter of 2019, while shipments in the offline segment declined 4%, according to technology market research firm Counterpoint. Launches and multiple summer sale events drove the growth during the quarter. Realme, Asus, Vivo and Oppo were the fastest growing brands in the online segment, the research showed.

The top five brands — from Xiaomi and Realme — captured 84% of the total online market. Xiaomi alone captured around 46% of the total online market in the second quarter of 2019.

Its Redmi Note 7 Pro series, Redmi 6A, Redmi Note 6 Pro and Redmi Go drove volumes, contributing to more than two-thirds of Xiaomi’s total online sales. In June, Xiaomi introduced an ‘Express Delivery’ programme to promote sales on Mi.com. Realme became the second-largest player in the online segment, driven by a strong online push and good performance of its affordable series — Realme C2, Realme 3, and Realme 3 Pro.

Mi Super Sale, HONOR Days, Flipkart Summer Carnival, Big Shopping Days, Amazon Summer sale, Amazon Fab Fest, Knock Out Offers, Realme 1ST anniversary sale, and Month End Mobile Fest were some of the most popular events during the quarter, the research revealed.

“The major e-commerce portals (Flipkart and Amazon) ran various summer sale campaigns and month-end discounts to promote their sales. Additionally, we saw that OEMs pushing their products towards their own online platforms (for example, Mi.com, Realme) to divert some of the digital footfall to their own store. The upcoming quarter is crucial in terms of new launches, and lucrative offers as all the leading brands prefer to introduce their new products ahead of the festive season,” said Anshika Jain, commenting on the findings.

“The growth of Xiaomi and Realme and the focus of Samsung on online channels, with its Galaxy M-series, drove the shipments in the online segment. The success of these three brands also meant that the Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 (approximately $210 to $280) was the fastest-growing price band in the online segment. Xiaomi Note 7 Pro was the best performing model in this price band, followed by the Realme 3 Pro,” said Jain.

Samsung was the third-largest player in the online segment. The M-series contributed to more than 50% of its online volume. Amazon recorded its highest ever shipments in the premium segment, driven by the OnePlus 7 series.

Commenting on the brand performance, Tarun Pathak, associate director, said, “Brands and even channels are now diversifying their channel/platform strategy in a bid to increase their reach. For example, Amazon recently infused $404 million in its India business and is also investing heavily in Future Retail group to strengthen its offline footprint in the Indian market.

Meanwhile, Xiaomi’s Mi.com has started to offer ‘Guaranteed Next-Day Delivery’ service in over 150 cities across the country. The report estimates that the online market will get a strong push from all the major brands as they are gearing up for the upcoming festive season sale. Also, according to the research analysts, online platforms are expected to focus on targeting higher average selling price (ASP) models on their platforms rather than lower ASP devices to lure customers during the festive season sale.

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