Hasmukh Suthar
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How Difficult can it be for local retailers to do business online?

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Hasmukh Suthar
·May 17, 2021·

2 min read

How Difficult can it be for local retailers to do business online?

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India has been a country of small businesses where people rely heavily on brick & Mortar retailers for their daily needs. Despite good penetration of Amazon and Flipkart into Indian markets, Indians prefer shopping at a nearby physical shop rather than at an online shop. This trend is changing fast and with Covid-19 restrictions coming in B&M retailers had to rethink their strategies for near future.

A lot of B&M retailers are thinking to get into online sales channel and thanks to startups like Dukaan.io, it’s never been this easy for retailers to start their online shop. However, is just going online the solution for upcoming business challenges for B&M retailers? Let us find out what are these challenges and how can retailers overcome these challenges.

Challenge no.1: E-comm Giants
Let’s say retailers invest into websites and online assets to start independent online selling but they will never be able to generate trust and provide competitive prices as much as Amazon or Flipkart. So, when customer think of buying online, they will also consider buying from amazon and flipkart where independent retailers will lose due to Ecomm giant’s pricing and delivery advantage.

Challenge no.2: Distributors
Let’s assume retailers starts selling on amazon and flipkart, although it is easier to list your products on Amazon and flipkart but there are already bigger players selling on these platforms. These players are either the company itself selling directly or big distributors who buy directly from the company giving them huge advantage in terms of pricing and supplies. If retailers cannot compete with respect to supplies and pricing then they cannot survive on these platforms.

Challenge no.3: Consumers
Despite good penetration of Ecomm in India, majority of Bharat still do not trust Ecomm websites and prefers to buy offline. Due to this limitation, even if B&M businesses come online, consumers do not buy through online channel, rather they would buy from physical store of the same organization. Maybe this set of consumers prioritize feel of the product over convenience.

Although a lot of startups are coming up who are helping Indian retailers to go online but above 3 challenges are very personal for retailers and nobody but themselves need to find solution for above mentioned challenges.

I hope you liked this article. If you feel I missed any point, or you have any solutions in mind for above challenges please do comment down below. I would love to hear from you.

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