Online Portals Game For Fastest Delivery Model

Online Portals Game

New Delhi, May 28: As the trend of online shopping is catching up in India, most of the online marketplaces have started improving its turnaround time (TAT). After the rat race of low price and discounts the latest is the fastest delivery, in the $3-billion ecommerce market in India.

Looking at the current TAT, Online marketplace Snapdeal claims to deliver goods in “just two hours”. This, the company plans to achieve by setting up 40 fulfillment centers across 15 cities.
Players such as Amazon and Flipkart, which have already announced same-day delivery in the major cities. However, Snapdeal plans to extend this service called ‘Snapdeal Plus’ to 30 cities within this year.

Rohit Bansal, co-Founder & COO, said, “Our vision is to partner with 100,000 sellers in the next 12 months and to create an ecosystem that allows businesses to sell online.”

Secondly for better supply chain, these e-tailers allow sellers to stock their inventory at the nearest fulfillment center where the orders, once placed by customers, will be shipped in shortest time.

Sellers are also provided with analytics and reports based on their past sales, which will enable them to predict the level of inventory that they need to maintain at the fulfillment centers.

However, industry experts are of the view that the ecommerce companies have to burn a lot of cash in a bid to fulfill product delivery in such a short time as they have to invest heavily on warehouses even in smaller cities. According to them, one-day shipping can cost four times more than the amount of standard shipping of six-seven days.

Not only fastest delivery, these online marketplace have to expand their reach in semi-urban and rural areas. E-retailers like Flipkart, Snapdeal, Amazon India and others find it difficult to reach small towns.

Mobile penetration has ensured demand from most regions, but servicing this demand is not easy,” said Abhishek Chakraborty, executive director at DTDC Courier & Cargo told TOI. “A number of issues like lack of physical infrastructure, security concerns and local tax laws prevent complete coverage.”

Currently estimated at $2.3 billion (about Rs 13,800 crore), online retail is expected to gallop to almost $38 billion (Rs 2.27 lakh crore) in the next five years, according to a report by retail advisory firm Technopak.

Ecommerce growth could have been much more, but almost all states in the country have regions that are not serviced by ecommerce companies. Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and West Bengal are among those that have least coverage despite having highly populated towns with high demand. For online retailers this is a lost opportunity.

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