The Future of Retail Stores in India: Dead or Alive?

With the increasing penetration of e-commerce in India, a national rhetoric has prevailed in recent years, what is the future of retail stores in India?

In the past couple of years India has witnessed a boom in internet based technologies and it has also seen new ways of conducting business using these technologies. At that time, we also became aware of many new terms such as: online marketplace, e-commerce portal, online shopping, etc. are seen as a serious threat to physical retailers.

But is this really the case? Are physical retail stores on the verge of dying in India? Is this really a serious question to fear?

Based on information unveiled by leading agencies like KPMG and others after studying buying trends and buyer behaviors in India, we say no.

The future of retail stores is still secure here, but only through the timely adoption and upgrade of technology, which provides a great in-store experience for shoppers.

Digging deeper is the fact that, all over the world, the buyer’s inclination for online and mobile shopping is largely due to the fact that these platforms provide great convenience, a speed and ease of use, while obsolete brick and mortar don’t give the same. This also applies to India. In addition, the Indian industry has also experienced major disruption in e-commerce due to all the technological interventions and large discounts offered on online or mobile purchases. All of these factors severely affected brick and mortar and posed a threat to offline businesses.

However, to resolve the issue of huge inappropriate online discounts, the Retailers Association of India (RAI) has contacted the Indian government on several occasions and hence the e-commerce regulatory policy is now underway. But, this is not the only tool for offline retailers to keep them established in such fierce competition, they really need to be on a war footing to face such challenges, and it is. possible only through the adoption of advanced technology.

Now, we should also analyze the other factors like online and offline retail advantage or disadvantage. While the online platform has an advantage in the form of “ease of purchase,” brick and mortar has an even more distinct advantage – having face-to-face interaction between customers and associates, which is rare. for other channels. But, even in this advantageous position, a physical store must suffer from the lack of convenience for the consumer. Last generation retailing involves more than just attractive design, beautiful workmanship of accessories and store accessories. In the new age retail business, it is very essential for a retailer to take care of the convenience of the customers and provide them with the best shopping experience. Moreover, it is not that only physical stores have problems, but online gamers suffer from several implications as well. In this country of 1.25 billion people, only 330 million people have Internet access, the majority of the population is still deprived of basic amenities, and people are more attached to local physical stores for their household needs. So looking at all these aspects, although the number of online stores is increasing, but after a while the online platform has limits, but not physical stores.

India is one of the biggest markets in the world; Here, the consumption of products and services is steadily increasing, per capita income is gradually increasing, and urbanization is happening rapidly, resulting in a huge successful retail opportunity. So, in order to make retailing more comfortable, many surveys have been carried out in recent years, and the data shows that Indian consumers are gradually more and more aware of the ease and convenience when shopping. . Therefore, it is high time for retailers to embrace advanced technology. They can also enable the integration between online and offline retailing using technology to provide a smooth and enjoyable shopping experience for customers. If a customer really feels this ease of clicking in a brick and mortar, that experience gives some kind of satisfaction and ultimately that converts as well.

In addition, the importance of physical stores is so critical that many successful online retailers have realized its importance and are also going offline to reach a consumer base, which was not yet tapped by them. In India there are many winning omnichannel players, who are constantly improving their operation and growing their business day by day, for example Lenskart, Zivame, Pepperfry, Raymond, etc. are the leading names in new age retail. Therefore, the concept of omnichannel retailing, which is successful in many countries, is also viable in India.

In a nutshell, the future of retail stores is not doomed in India, but it is even brighter, with constant innovation and upgrading.

Source by Navin Kumar

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