Even as the country is witnessing the digitalisation of businesses with a boost to online platforms, B2B wholesale online shopping firm Amazon Business is hopeful of significant business growth in the country going forward. The company has helped 2.5 million MSMEs digitise across the country. In an interview with News18.com, Amazon Business Director Suchit Subhas said about a third of its customers and orders come from tier 2 and tier 3 towns, and meeting customer needs will remain its focus. Edited excerpts:
How Is Amazon Business Different From Offline Suppliers?
Our procurement solutions come with ease & convenience, a range of selections, and a wide range of features, along with fast and reliable solutions. Amazon Business is revolutionising procurement in India digitally and contributing to the Digital India mission by providing a reliable and efficient platform for businesses to purchase goods and services online.
We offer frequently purchased business supplies and products at wholesale prices to small and medium businesses, including small office and home offices, educational institutes, kirana stores, hospitals, hotels, and restaurants.
As India Is Among The Fastest-Growing Major Economies, How Has Been Amazon Business’ Growth Here?
We have become India’s largest GST store having over 16 crore GST-enabled products. In 2017, we started with 14,000 sellers and now, we have over 6.5 lakh sellers onboarded with us. Amazon Business is also contributing to the Digital India mission by providing a reliable and efficient marketplace for businesses to purchase goods and services online.
Our marketplace offers easy online procurement, a wide customer and seller base along with the tools to manage procurement efficiently. This helps MSMEs save time and money by streamlining their procurement processes and providing them with insights to make informed purchasing decisions. We can deliver to 99.5 per cent PIN codes across the country by utilising our deeply penetrated network of fulfilment centres across India.
What Are the Growth Trends in Smaller Towns and Cities As Compared to Metro Cities?
About 30 per cent of our customers and 25 per cent of our orders come from tier II and tier III cities. Nearly 90 per cent of sellers on Amazon.in use Amazon’s logistics and warehousing services, out of which over 50 per cent of our sellers are from Tier II and below cities.
We plan to sustain this momentum in the near future by catering to our existing and potential customers through our thought-led services. We ensure that we cater to the diverse needs of MSMEs and provide them with distinct options to resolve their challenges. In terms of sellers, Amazon has digitised 2.5 million MSMEs across the country.
What Are the MSME Trends in India Right Now in the E-Commerce Sector?
We see three large trends emerging in MSMEs in the e-commerce sector – digitisation, costs and efficiency, and regional growth.
In Digitisation, MSMEs will leverage digital technologies to improve their competitiveness and reach new markets. This will involve the adoption of online marketplaces, digital payment systems, and cloud-based tools for managing business operations.
In costs and efficiency, MSMEs are moving to become more efficient, reducing costs and enhancing their profitability via the adoption of new technologies and the creation of new business models.
As far as the regional growth of MSMEs is concerned, it will accelerate with the increase of skill levels in smaller towns and rural areas, accelerated by the tech adoption mentioned earlier.
We also have specific benefits for the MSMEs in tier II and III cities to help them with their requirements such as – language support, lower logistics costs because of delivery options including doorstep delivery, and market awareness.
How is Amazon Business Transforming Wholesale Business Landscape In India?
We have continued to add products to cater to changing needs of businesses. To simplify the shopping experience for our customers, we have dedicated stores such as the commercial store, quantity discounts deals, and best seller stores to help customers find products as per their needs — all curated in one place.
Our commercial store offers thousands of products across top categories such as business laptops, networking devices, industrial adhesives, tools and equipment and safety and security across top brands such as Lenovo, Cisco, Pidilite, Kimberly Clark, Stanley Black and Decker, and Kirloskar.
In the next couple of weeks, we are hosting multiple events for the MSMEs to simplify shopping for high-value office requirements like PCs, laptops, ACs, large appliances and home electronics in one place. As a commitment to our valued customers, we continue to host Business Value Days towards the last week of the month for the past few years where we provide the best value for money and help MSMEs to save costs.
What Are Your Future Plans in India?
Amazon Business has worked as a one-stop destination offering a wide selection of business supplies, competitive pricing, and a vast delivery network. At Amazon Business, customers’ needs will continue to be our constant focus. We have introduced multiple services and will further develop, like credit extension, and business analysis tools, and provide a wide selection and greater savings for the customer.
Along with this we will focus on digitisation for our customers and bring them on board with the advanced technology that is currently present in the market while making them future-ready as well.
In 2023, Amazon Business will support business customers in their digitisation journey. It will focus on increasing the range of products available to enable faster growth, improving the speed and accuracy of deliveries to reduce the working capital requirements, competitive pricing to improve their profitability, and convenience features, especially in terms of mobile purchasing, digital documentation which will help customers to reduce costs of running the business. With evolving trends, we are committed to evolving and expanding along with the ecosystem.
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