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Digital buyer penetration 2014-2020

The digital buyer penetration in India stood at about 48 percent in 2016. In 2018, the penetration stood at about 60 percent and was further estimated to increase to over 70 percent by 2020. The south Asian country had the fastest growing retail market in 2019. The number of digital buyers in India was estimated to be around 330 billion in 2020. Personalized advertisements combined with attractive discounts, quick and easy delivery/return services were the key drivers within the industry.

The boon of internet accessibility

With around 560 million users, India was the second largest online market globally. The number of internet users was further expected to increase to over 660 million by 2023. Furthermore, one in every three Indians were estimated to engage in online shopping. With digital infrastructure booming in the country, especially in the rural areas, the benefits in the e-commerce industry are likely to increase three-fold.

Digital sale segments

Electronics had the highest share with about 48 percent in the e-commerce retail market across the country in 2018. This was followed by the apparel and furnishing segments. Books accounted for a share of only three percent in the industry that year. Growth within the industry seemed directly proportional to the increase in the number of smartphone users. With expansion trends in smartphone and internet penetration, the industry was estimated to be worth about 200 billion U.S. dollars by 2027.

Digital buyer penetration in India from 2014 to 2016, with forecasts until 2020

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Release date

August 2016



Survey time period

2014 to 2016

Age group

14 years and older

Special properties

among internet users who have made at least one purchase via any digital channel within the past year, including online, mobile and tablet purchases.

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Statistics on "E-commerce in India"

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