A person browses through an e-commerce website. (Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg)

India’s E-Commerce Market To Reach $84 Billion By 2021: Deloitte Report

India’s e-commerce market is expected to jump more than threefold from 2017 to $84 billion by 2021 as the number of internet users increase and higher use of smartphones and social media promotions boost online sales.

The country’s online retail market is growing at an annualised rate of 32 percent, according to a report by Deloitte India and Retailers Association of India titled ‘Unravelling the Indian consumer’.

India’s E-Commerce Market To Reach $84 Billion By 2021: Deloitte Report

India’s internet users are expected to rise to 647 million by 2021 from 432 million in 2016, the report said. About 75 percent of new internet users are likely to come from the rural areas. The number of online shoppers In India will also increase from 15 percent of total internet users to 50 percent by 2026, it said.

Besides, India has the world’s highest millennial population in absolute terms, the report said. The millennials—who form more than one-fourth of the workforce in the Asia Pacific region and tend to spend higher due to rising disposable income—constitute nearly 34 percent of India’s total population. With this, the country offers high growth potential for the consumer markets and retailers.

India’s E-Commerce Market To Reach $84 Billion By 2021: Deloitte Report

This will fuel the country’s retail market to touch $1.2 trillion by 2021 from $795 billion in 2017, the report said, making it the third largest in Asia and fourth largest globally.

The share of organised retail market, according to the report, too, is expected to increase to 22-25 percent by 2021 from 12 percent in 2017, driven by the growth in the e-commerce market.

India’s E-Commerce Market To Reach $84 Billion By 2021: Deloitte Report

Shift In Preferences

Millennials are increasingly becoming health conscious and placing higher importance on physical and emotional well-being, and thus moving towards healthier and organic options, the report said.

Nearly 36 percent of Indian millennials, according to the report, have a fitness app installed on their phones and about 45 percent think leading a healthy life is essential. Therefore, even though ‘eating out’ as a concept has significantly increased, specifically among millennials, focus on healthy alternatives is also on the rise, it said.

This has also led to an increase in reliance on nature-based or organic or ayurvedic cures in the personal care products category, the report said.