I dont buy into the prevailing wisdom that eCommerce in India is dying (dead). For venture investors the eCommerce category might be “been there, done that”, but smart entrepreneurs always see opportunity in being contrarian.
There are some very interesting eCommerce companies doing good work (growing revenues, making margin and excelling in service) in India. While the mainstream companies are spending money on advertising, acquiring customers expensively and offering deep discounts, many niche sites are building their reputations with an excessive focus on service and unique (relatively) products.
While there are 1.4 million Internet retailers in the US, there are about 2000 in India (ones that are doing more than 5 transactions daily). Most of the smaller ones that are doing a good job in the US are focused on either niche segments or markets. That I believe is a key trick that most niche eCommerce sites in India are executing the best on.
I wanted to highlight a few that I consider are doing a good job.
1. Shopo: I wanted to invest in this company before they took a seed round from a few investors. They are a good example of focus on fairly unique products and a good team executing well.
2. Allthingscustomized Another fairly crowded market, but the marketing techniques have been tweaked to make a margin on every customer order in this very competitive market segment.
3. Greendust: Looks and feels like yet another ecommerce site, but sells refurbished goods, with a good markup.
If you have an eCommerce site and are doing well, your best strategy is to keep your head down, focus on metrics and operations and ignore all the news and pundit’s opinions.
Zig, when everyone else Zags.