A $100 Billion Opportunity: Key Strategies & Growth Hacks To Crack The D2C eCommerce Market In India

Worldline RISE 2022 in partnership with Shoptimize and ET Retail recently conducted an online panel discussion on ‘A $100 Billion Opportunity: Key Strategies & Growth Hacks To Crack The D2C eCommerce Market In India’, to discuss on the key trends in the D2C e-commerce space and its future prospects.

The speakers on the panel were -

  • Varun Alagh, Co-founder and CEO – Mama Earth
  • Chakradhar Gade, Co-founder - Country Delight
  • Shantanu Deshpande, (Founder and CEO – Bombay Shaving Company
  • Vardhan Phadnis, Co-founder and Chief Sales Officer - Shoptimize
  • Sheik Mohideen, Vice President - SMB and Partnerships - Worldline

Below are the key takeaways from the session.

Rise of D2C players in the industry

Recent trends in online shopping indicates that it is at an all-time high due to the pandemic. Owing to this, the D2C business has also witnessed a massive growth. The presence of D2C brands in India has grown exponentially over the past couple of years. Reasons identified for this significant spurt of D2C e-commerce are democratisation of media in distribution, access to capital, and shared ecosystems where various industries are intertwined with each other.

Establishing brand equity in the D2C space

D2C brands have an upper hand over traditional e-commerce brands as they have access to consumer data. Since D2C brands can target the customers directly, they can save costs and reinvest it in their business. They don’t just have access to capital but can churn capital. Every D2C brand now has the opportunity to scale. This has led to many brands realising the importance of shifting to a digital-first D2C model, especially post-pandemic.

Enhancing technology and data capabilities to establish the brand’s foundation

For every brand to establish itself in the marketplace, it needs technology that provides unparalleled performance and superior user experience. In this ever-evolving e-commerce market, brands that integrate the best-in-class technology in payment, warehouse management, CRM or any other processes, will stand out. Along with technology, brands are relying on customer data to further leverage their presence. This is where data analytics comes into the picture. A distinguishing factor for a D2C brand is the presence of data capability, needed to analyse funnels. Given the sophistication of digital media, D2C brands are now offering personalised marketing campaigns based on the behaviour of the consumers, buying habits, and transaction history.

What’s in store for the digital payment space?

The growth of Indian e-commerce has led to a substantial increase in digital payments in the past 3 years. Creating a robust digital payment ecosystem, to make transactions seamless and convenient has become a necessity for D2C brands. Citing the example of Payment Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF), Sheik Mohideen said, “The regulations around digital payments have leveraged the growth of D2C e-commerce. PIDF, which was set up with an objective to subsidise the payment infrastructure in India, has provided a boost to the D2C ecosystem”.

Innovations in digital payments that have contributed to D2C e-commerce

With the growth of e-commerce, customers are not only looking for the best products, but also a seamless payment process. Innovations in effective omnichannel service have become crucial to the growth of D2C. Brands wanting to initiate a smooth payment process across all channels are now partnering with payment service providers (PSPs) like Worldline to offer their customers customised payment solutions and an enhanced shopping experience. Considering the potential of D2C brands to extend their business overseas, cross-border payment is yet another key proposition. That’s where Worldline has proved itself with an extensive reach and expertise in local market preferences, currencies, payment methods, and compliance regulations.

Challenges faced by D2C brands

From the perspective of payments, D2C brands have been tasked with providing their customers with ease and convenience. Integrating newer payment methods is a challenge in a country where multiple payment options like UPI, card-based transactions, EMI, and Buy Now Pay Later exist. Worldline has emerged as an innovative and experience-led payment service provider, offering efficiency to its clientele in terms of digital payments. Since payment is the final leg in the shopping experience, ensuring seamless payments can go a long way, and this is where Worldline’s expertise makes a difference.

Touching the $100 billion mark for the D2C industry

We will witness the exponential growth of D2C brands in the market in this decade. The shift in consumer shopping behaviour paired with accelerated digitalisation, growing millennial population, and increase in consumer awareness, has improved the opportunity for D2C e-commerce to reach the $100 billion mark. With the rise of D2C e-commerce, the entire ecosystem which includes platform providers, logistics services, and payment service providers, is predicted to grow alongside. It is now up to the D2C businesses to make the most of this opportunity by delivering personalised customer experiences with the help of these tools.