The deadly virus has brought the economy to a different level. As soon as news of lockdown broke, people panicked as COVID- 19 has the whole world in its grip. Suddenly, everyone was not able to adapt changes in living/ working patterns. They were not in the habit of staying home for long period of time. As a result, rise in level of anxiety/depression is noticed.
By Sakshi Singla:
The deadly virus has brought the economy to a different level. As soon as news of lockdown broke, people panicked as COVID- 19 has the whole world in its grip. Suddenly, everyone was not able to adapt changes in living/ working patterns. They were not in the habit of staying home for long period of time. As a result, rise in level of anxiety/depression is noticed. This unexpected situation, bringing out worst fears of the people, changed the way they work, shop and communicate with each other. Everyone in order to follow social distancing strictly and not going to public places, no matter what the purpose is, started spending most of their time online, basically in search of entertainment or education. Understanding the need of hour, they are shifting towards online system also for business (sale & purchase), bank transactions, bill payments etc. So, if we look closely, the Pandemic has positive impacts on the e-commerce market along with environment, unity and understanding in families and self-dependency. As the current situation totally changed the way consumers behave and do any activity, affecting the e-commerce industry positively.
According to a research done before the COVID-19 outbreak, it was predicted that the growth in Indian e-commerce market would reach 200 billion US dollars by the end of 2026. But according to the present situation, it will not be wrong to say that the goal of 200 billion US dollars may be reached a lot sooner than the predicted time.
In the current situation of travel restrictions and lockdown scenario, I am unable to do field research as it involves human interactions. Recognizing the advantages of digital world, I conducted e-survey of 200 people in the month of July. After calculating e-survey results, I came to know 85% respondents are using e-commerce platform. On the question of “for how long they are using e-commerce”, 27% said they started using such platform during lockdown, while 60% said they were using it before lockdown also but their usage has definitely increased after COVID-19 outbreak. When they were asked about the most prominent reasons for which e-commerce is being used more during lockdown, 37.06% respondents said they are using it just for maintaining social distance.
Undoubtedly, people are facing many challenges as they have the fear of infection if they step out of their houses. So, they are moving towards digital world. 11.17% respondents are using e-commerce for the sake of entertainment by doing contactless payments by buying online streaming services of Netflix, Amazon Prime to avoid going to cinema halls and 18.27% respondents are using for shopping (essential products) through Grofers, Big Basket; that witnessed a boom in business. Moreover, e-commerce companies are now allowed to deliver non-essential products everywhere except the RED ZONE areas.
According to 20.30% respondents, increase in recharges through Paytm or Google pay as well as internet banking also promoted the use of contactless mode of payment as touch is curse now-a-days.
As a result, 87.82% respondents think there are many significant developments in the area of e-commerce as it has many advantages over the traditional commercial methods and 89.85% respondents said companies can maximize the revenue by adopting e-commerce platform rather than traditional commerce. Earlier, all these services were popular only in metropolitan cities but now have evolved even in small cities as well as in some of the villages after the lockdown and 73.23% respondents think that the digital world has positively changed their lifestyle. According to them, the future of e-commerce industry will be very good because of sudden shift in e-commerce sector that clearly shows the steadily gaining momentum not only in India but over the world.