India is the fastest growing online retail country in the Asia-Pacific region, with ecommerce sales having grown dramatically from USD 2.3 billion in 2012, to an estimated USD 17.5 billion in 2015.
Although India’s ecommerce market is still maturing, the number of online shoppers in the country is expected to reach 41 million by 2016, representing 27% of the total number of internet users in the country.
The current ecommerce landscape in India, specifically caters to consumers who are 35’s and under, who are keen on apparel and technology. So for retailers operating within the ‘fashion accessories’ category, India is a region that is ripe for picking
As well as jewellery, other key categories that merchants should consider in the apparel and accessories field include: watches, eyewear and handbags.
There is an increasing demand from Indian consumers for luxury goods, and over the past few years the market for timepieces has grown rapidly, displaying a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.3% for the period 2008 – 2013. Wrist watches form the largest segment of the timepieces market, accounting for more than 89%.
Dramatic growth has also been witnessed in the online wrist watch segment, which has been driven by the rising internet penetration in India and the steady increase of e-shoppers. Growth in India’s online watch sales is expected to continue, reaching an estimated CAGR of 54% by 2018.
Currently, the online market for watches is dominated by five ecommerce players, who represent as much as 92% of the market share in this e-category: Snapdeal, Flipkart, Watchkart, Jabong and Myntra.
These e-marketplaces offer a more profitable business model for merchants, than operating their own native ecommerce store, and provide a secure and lucrative platform to expand into India.
Eyewear is another hugely popular category for Indian consumers.
Increasingly fashion conscious consumers and improved health care practices have been seen as a reason for the growing interest in eyewear that has been witness online. Indeed, ecommerce eyewear sales in India have shown an astonishing growth rate, registering a CAGR of around 247% for the period 2011-2013.
Although, the Indian ecommerce industry for eyewear is currently dominated by several online retailers, the growing popularity of e-marketplaces in the country gives rise to new platforms for eyewear delivery.
The Indian handbag industry has also grown rapidly.
This has been put down to, the rise in the personal disposable income of Indian consumers, the increasing number of working women in the country, the speed of internet penetration, and the growing acceptance of handbags as a lifestyle product.
The growth in the Indian market of handbags has also been seen across various online channels and e-marketplaces, which have showcased an increase of 43.1% within this category, over the period 2008-2013.
As the handbag market in the country is expected to grow further, at a CAGR of 17.1% by 2018, this online category represents an ample opportunity for retailers looking to expand into India.
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