The e-commerce market in Pakistan has witnessed major development. The country has got the highest rates of mobile and internet penetration in South Asia, with forty million Internet subscribers.
The count of the registered e-commerce merchants has seen more than 2.6 times increase in present times in mid of the 3G/4G services and the availability of the cheaper smartphones and internet packages.
Pakistan has got one of the highest rates of mobile and internet usages in the South Asian region, with forty million Internet subscribers and twenty million Facebook users.
This development in the sector has motivated many retailers to start and manage their own websites or use online marketplaces for selling their products. Still, there is still a lot of room for further growth and development.
As per the statistics, more than $54.47 billion sales was reported in the year 2017 just by Amazon in the United States, while Pakistan’s e-commerce sales amounted for $622 million in the year 2017 and is targeted to cross the $1 billion mark by the year 2020.
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Other than technology, some of the factors that have worked as a catalyst for e-commerce growth includes the availability of cash at the time of delivery, ease of purchasing, customer reviews and feedback on social media platform and a variety of products to choose from.
A senior official of the Corporate Innovation at Excellence Delivered (ExD)—one of the largest technology services firm in Pakistan said that although it is a fairly novel trend of business for Pakistan, the trend of online shopping is extending rapidly.
The official explained the mechanics that operate behind e-commerce, highlighting the primary payment method presently being used is Cash on Demand (COD) where more than ninety per cent of online purchases are being done by COD at time of delivery to the customers.
It is amazing to mention that nearly thirty-five per cent of the nation’s monthly seventy thousand COD shipments are delivered outside Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi. It indicates that even the rural shoppers are also willing to go online for making purchases for the goods they cannot find in the local markets.
The increasing growth in terms of sales and consumer preferences has also boosted the brands to reconsider their strategy regarding the conventional retail channels and to try alternate e-Commerce methodologies. The product quality is also an issue which should be taken care of by the online retailers for boosting the confidence of consumers.