The India Retail Industry is the largest among all the industries, the retail sector has helped in giving strong impetus to overall economic growth as a significant driver of the growth of services sector, which contributes as much as 54 per cent of GDP. It has strong backward and forward linkages with other sectors like agriculture and industry through stimulating demand for goods and through mass marketing, packaging, storage and transport. Moreover, it creates considerable direct and indirect employment in the economy. Also, the consumers have benefited in terms of wide range of products available in a market. The Retail Industry in India has come forth as one of the most dynamic and fast paced industries with several players entering the market. But all of them have not yet tasted success because of the heavy initial investments that are required to break even with other companies and compete with them
The total concept and idea of shopping has undergone an attention drawing change in terms of format and consumer buying behavior, ushering in a revolution in shopping in India. Modern retailing has entered into the Retail market in India as is observed in the form of bustling shopping centers, multi-storied malls and the huge complexes that offer shopping, entertainment and food all under one roof. With growing time constraints and choices, the consumer is getting used to having options readily at hand when one steps out to make the final purchase decision without much dissonance Need for an enhanced look and feel of the shopping environment. With retail ambiences getting upgraded, clearly the poky neighborhood kirana stores are becoming part of the past for the hypermarket consumer, and one will soon find it difficult to shop “regularly” at the dusty grocery shop.
Today with the growth of malls and hypermarkets, consumers no longer think “expensive looking” means “expensive”. To actually establish premium imagery through shopping environment is going to be that much more difficult! Need for customer service to encourage consumers to come back again and again and buy more. Quite contrary to the thought that technology will dehumanize transactions, the truth is humans will make all the difference.
It may seem that in a vast country like India, this is restricted to a few urban towns. This could be myopic thinking. The revolution was brewing in South India in the 90s but seems to have taken speed in the 21st century.
As “retail” brands see the value of volumes and with the ready availability of both technologies for back-end management and real estate for front-end face, business compulsions and opportunities will make them expand faster than one can imagine.
Consumers moving up the “diminishing return” curve. After getting a certain level of quality in many categories, consumers are unwilling to pay more for incremental quality and so are ready to make do with “acceptable quality”, which store brands offer very easily.
Media fragmentation makes its more and more difficult for mass marketed brands to actually connect with consumers. So the battle moves to the market place where by sheer ownership, store brands hold an edge.
They are cost advantage, because store brands operate on much less overheads because their target markets are limited to the catchments area in and around the store and so depend much less on “expensive” mass media brand-building advertising. And above all there are fewer partners to share the “margin goodies” with. A large young working population with median age of 24 years, nuclear families in urban areas, along with increasing workingwomen population and emerging opportunities in the services sector are going to be the key factors in the growth of the organized Retail sector in India. The growth pattern in organized retailing and in the consumption made by the Indian population will follow a rising graph helping the newer businessmen to enter the India Retail Industry.
In India the vast middle class and its almost untapped retail industry are the key attractive forces for global retail giants wanting to enter into newer markets, clearly, the impact of this retail revolution could be bigger than just the changing façade of the market place and enhancing consumer buying experience. It is a looming threat to “mass brand marketers” and the sooner they take cognizance of that, the better. Mass retailers may not only redefine shopping experiences, but also redefine market spaces. The future of the India Retail Industry looks promising with the growing of the market, with the government policies becoming more favorable and the emerging technologies facilitating operations.
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