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INDIAN INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT, LUCKNOW

Supply Chain Challenges of E-Commerce Companies in India and Scope for Improvement

Group 10 | Section E | IIM Lucknow, 2012-14

3/21/2013

PGP28237 Aishwarya Kirthivasan PGP28239 - Bharti Yadav PGP28240 - Muhammed Rijas PGP28249 - Sruti Pujari PGP28250 - Anju R. Gothwal PGP27276 - Pramesh Chand

Contents

INTRODUCTION

2

REVOLUTION RETAIL: KEY FINDINGS AND INSIGHTS

3

CREATE A SURVEY TO UNDERSTAND THE PRACTICES AND SUPPLY CHAIN CHALLENGES FACED BY ECOMMERCE COMPANIES IN INDIA

7

Introduction:

7

Areas of Focus:

8

Survey Creation:

10

SURVEY TO IDENTIFY POSSIBLE AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT FOR E-RETAIL COMPANIES SELLING MULTIPLE PRODUCTS SUCH AS BOOKS, APPARELS AND

15

Hypothesis:

15

Questionnaire

16

ANALYSIS

20

Recommendations

21

CONCLUSION

22

REFERENCES

23

1

INTRODUCTION

Retail is the sale of goods and services from individuals or businesses to the end-user. Retailers are part of an integrated system called the supply chain. A retailer purchases goods or products in large quantities from manufacturers directly or through a wholesale, and then sells smaller quantities to the consumer for a profit. Retailing can be done in either fixed locations like stores or markets, door-to- door or by delivery. Retailing includes subordinated services, such as delivery. The term "retailer" is also applied where a service provider services the needs of a large number of individuals, such as a public. Shops may be on residential streets, streets with few or no houses or in a shopping mall. Shopping streets may be for pedestrians only. Sometimes a shopping street has a partial or full roof to protect customers from precipitation. The new technological revolution has taken retailing into a completely new space, online retailing. Online retailing is a type of electronic commerce used for business-to-consumer (B2C) transactions and mail order which are forms of non-shop retailing.

Once a particular product has been found on the website of the seller, most online retailers use shopping cart software to allow the consumer to accumulate multiple items and to adjust quantities, like filling a physical shopping cart or basket in a conventional store. A "checkout" process follows in which payment and delivery information is collected, if necessary. Some stores allow consumers to sign up for a permanent online account so that some or all of this information only needs to be entered once. The consumer often receives an e-mail confirmation once the transaction is complete. Less sophisticated stores may rely on consumers to phone or e-mail their orders, though credit card numbers should never be accepted by e-mail, for security.

This document involves a brief analysis of the report ‘Revolution Retail’ by Kevin O’Marah, Head of Faculty, SCM World. The analysis is followed by a survey to understand the practices and supply chain challenges faced by ecommerce companies in India and a survey of existing and potential customers who buy using ecommerce sites and suggest possible areas of improvement for ecommerce companies with special focus on products like books, apparels and electronics.

2

REVOLUTION RETAIL: KEY FINDINGS AND INSIGHTS

This report is based on a research that was carried out to understand today’s customer value chain and the future as seen by the retailers with respect to e-commerce and multi-channel customer satisfaction.

Fundamental Forces of change

The transition from general store to super markets to television and finally to e-commerce and multi- channel indicates higher operating efficiency in the value chain as the retail medium becomes more advanced. In this process it is essential to understand the different roles played by physical stores and e-commerce sites. The two have varying cost structures and also call for competitive and marketing strategies on different lines. For instance, physical stores aim at humanized, tactile benefits while the e-commerce medium differentiates itself by catering to price sensitivities and enhancing assortment for better product complementarity. Both require different supply chain capabilities to sustain their competitiveness.

This report studies various retailer concerns such as impact of e-commerce on physical stores, store associate and shopper behavior, the future structure of retail organizations and how to manage the changes in this sector. A survey carried as a part of this research revealed that 74% of retailers expected the store to still be important in the e-commerce era however, its role in the value chain will change.

Important Store functions in the future

The relative importance of physical stores with respect to e-commerce in future points towards the changing role of stores in the buying process. For instance store may act as a showcase for certain electronic items that a consumer may land up buying online. For other categories like perishables and apparels stores may play yet different roles. In case of perishables like grocery, stores may act as warehouses for online order fulfillment (eg. Tesco). On the other hand the charm of trying on a fashion garment helps sustain the growth of garment stores. Playing so many roles requires flexibilities which might prove to be a costly affair. The key to success lies in making strategic choices regarding what role the store will play and how e-commerce might complement its objectives.

Multi-channel functions

The two key e-commerce enabled functions that future stores may need to fulfill are buy-online- pickup-in-store and buy-online-ship-from-store. While both these capabilities are expected to be common across various formats, the latter is significantly less certain as a requirement of the e- commerce enabled retail future. Interestingly, 70 % of the respondents believe that pick-up in store is essential. As retailers looking the e-commerce enabled future expect additional duties at the stores, managing these new processes will be challenging for them. This will further call for enhanced role of

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associates to match the demands of better informed customers with the capabilities of the supply chain. This will mean better training and tool improvements without which retailers will not be competitive. A smart associate with in-stock inventory access and lots of knowledge will become very useful to the shopper.

Another element of the retail revolution will include job elimination at check out and elimination of floor staff. However, the importance of human capital in e-commerce future can’t be ignored. Although, labor skill requirements will be decreased due to automation, many retailers feel that e- commerce will up-skill rather than de-skill the work. The skills required may change in two ways: either intensive sales support or more intensive logistics. Depending upon the format (apparel, grocery etc.) one skill may be more important than the other.

Another aspect of the e-commerce enabled retail future is expectation of labor cost. As human capital gains importance, pays will rise. But, head-count reductions will offset higher wages. In other words, there will be fewer, more expensive associates in the stores.

The future e-commerce enabled shopper will enter the store better informed (owing to online research). The scope of 4 P’s (Product, Price, Place, Promotion) will become wider with variables such as express shipping vs. slow shipping, bulk order vs. single item orders, sale price vs. regular price and even discounts for survey participation. As rightly quoted in the article, the Google enabled customer can quickly map out a series of options along their personal demand curve before spending. Shoppers are willing to entertain offers catering to their product choice, price preference, availability and convenience. However, the art of balancing demand supply will call for more than just impressive assortment that is in-stock. There will be implications on sourcing, product design, and store layout and supply chain. One key insight is the supply chain implications of this finding. Customers making bulk orders at lower prices hold inventory for you. Those willing to wait for slow delivery allow you to ship in full truck loads or an optimized route. Some customers might narrow their selection requirements, which limits the SKU’s that you must carry, thus making your operations leaner and in- stock performance. These things will lead to significant opportunities of upstream supply chain savings.

Brand power constitutes another area of concern. Direct selling to customers has become more prevalent through business formats of the likes of Amazon, or through third party entities like Digital River. Vertical integration by manufacturers/retailers is a cause of worry. Does e-commerce favour the manufacturer or the retailer? This is a rather important debate. Data suggest that retailers expect their ability to impress customers to decline in the e-commerce future. They see the emergence of e- commerce as an accelerator to brand building that favours manufacturers. Direct-to-customer shopping forms a link between the manufacturer and the shoppers, thus obviating the presence of the retailer.

However, opinions regarding the importance of e-commerce in the retail future varies across formats. While grocery format is positive about the e-commerce future, apparel retailers foresee an opposite effect on their businesses.

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Organisational changes driven by e-commerce

With the onset of the retail revolution, organizations will have to demonstrate certain degree of transformation. One aspect could be improvement in the integration between store and the supply chain. Improved visibility of inventory to the customer as well as to the DC will help improve overall service. Customers will expect supply chain information that will guide them towards a profitable configuration. Offering details of product, packaging and delivery cost, financing terms and service contracts may be too much of a compromise for the supply chain, but this is the direction in which the future retail is heading.

Surprisingly enough, most retailers expect the lines of difference between e-commerce supply chain and in-store supply chain to disappear. The evolution of a unified supply chain approach has caused growth in various retail sectors, with the delivery of consistent prices across both e-commerce and store channels. The supply chain operations are becoming leaner as redundancy in inventory and operational expenses are being trimmed. Retail encompasses sequential process flows merchandise decisions through supply chain and into the store, and e-commerce tightens all these processes, thus compressing the calendar driven retail value chain. As cycle times shorten, there will be better information sharing across the process. This in turn will help improve decision making relating to volumes, assortment and pricing.

The convergence of operational roles tosses the question of which of the three functional players should lead the game. Responses say that merchandising was best qualified for the same. Supply chain and store operations were ranked second and third respectively. Cutting the data collected by the type of format, grocery and apparel retailers gave store operations and supply chain precedence over merchandising. The apparel retailers did express their anxiety owing to the increased complexity of customer fulfillment in an e-commerce enabled future.

Managing Change

The key question raised with regard to change management in the retail future was whether a common strategy should be followed across functions or each function should be allowed to grow at its own pace. As different kinds of surveys revealed conflicting results, there was uncertainty over who should lead a converged strategy. This could be owing to the immaturity of the traditional value chain roles that do not have a clear strategy for the future. There is a need for e-commerce to be seen from a short term perspective rather than a long term problem.

In this regard, retailers are hopeful that technology can come to their succor. As technology enhances the information flow across processes, it might make complex decision making possible within tighter time frames. Majority (about 68%) of the respondents felt the idea of using technology to this effect credible, as against a much smaller percentage of retailers who still believe that technology cannot replace human skills. Most retailers are looking forward to using technological advancements in handling data and interpreting it in real time.

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The revolution is slated to bring about a chance in the metrics of success in the sector. While traditional retailers used the metric same-store-sales-growth as a suitable metric, a large number of respondents felt that a new metric-“same-shopper-sales-growth” would be more appropriate in this context. An even larger percentage believes that some new metrics which are yet unidentified may prove to be more accurate in gauging success in an e-commerce enabled future.

Conclusion

This research primarily indicates that meeting the challenges and opportunities of the revolution retail will mean both- better pricing as well as satisfying in-store experience. Serious strategic implications are to be witnessed by stores as well as the supply chains that serve them.

Finally, it has been suggested that in order to handle the retail revolution, retailers should:

Understand the consumer better, not just the shopper. Use loyalty cards, kiosks and web stores to answer questions about what problems the consumers are trying to solve when they think of a particular retailer’s brand.

Empower their associates to solve problems better. Retail success is defined by the lifetime sales given to a customer. So for enhancing customer relationships, associates should be paid better as well as trained better, and in turn can be hired in fewer numbers.

Use the store as a supply chain asset. Traditionally, stores were considered to be the end of the supply chain. But ecommerce will force retailers to believe that the store marks the start of the supply chain. Hence, the assets of the store can be used to lean out logistics and cause customers to work with the retailer.

Organize for value chain success, not just sales volume. As the supply chain becomes more linear, volatility and information silos increase. Retail revolution will require retailers to manage the trade-off between selling and delivery more effectively.

Not ignore information technology. With the burgeoning popularity of ecommerce comes a data deluge, which can be managed only with better information technology. Therefore, it is imperative that retailers handle IT better and make more informed investments in IT. Finally, it has been said that revolution retail will enable a renaissance for many retailers, while for many, it will mean the end.

6

CREATE A SURVEY TO UNDERSTAND THE PRACTICES AND SUPPLY CHAIN CHALLENGES FACED BY ECOMMERCE COMPANIES IN INDIA

Introduction:

A paper by WANG Jin-fu and ZHANG Ai-xiang describes the relationship between strategic context and supply chain decisions. The premise is that supply chain decisions must be evaluated in a strategic context based on the answers to the following three points:

1. The desired strategic position of the firm

2. The supply chain capabilities the firm needs to fulfill its strategy.

3. The structure to fulfill those desired supply chain capabilities.

The goal is to create alignment between the desired strategic position of the firm and the capabilities of supply chain processes used to satisfy customer needs (Porter 1996).

The desired strategic position can be expressed in terms of a priority ranking on the needs of the customer segments that are targeted by the firm. Typical dimensions of customer needs that may be targeted by a supply chain include timeliness, quality of service, accessibility, availability, customizability, and price. There exists a tradeoff between the level at which a set of customer needs is targeted and the cost incurred by the supply chain in meeting these needs, decision regarding which are tackled by using efficient frontiers.

The efficient frontier represents the lowest cost of delivering a given level of a customer need using the best available supply chain processes. Each point on the frontier corresponds to a particular supply chain structure, employing the best available technologies, managerial policies, and inputs to deliver the desired level of a customer need at lowest cost. As such, the efficient frontier constitutes the state of best practices at a given point in time (Porter 1996). It also shows the inherent trade-offs that a firm must consider when selecting its strategic position given limitations in process technology and policies.

A strategic fit between the firm’s objective and the supply chain hence becomes crucial for success.

We look at the e-commerce retailers in India and specifically the Apparel segment. Some of the major retailers in e-commerce space are Fashionandyou, Myntra, Inkfruit, yebhi.com ,Jabong, Flipkart, Hushbaby, babyoye, letsbuy, Sanpdeal, dealsandyou, homeshop18, infibeam, rediffshopping, , zoomin, 20north, 99labels, ebay, indiangiftingportal, magazinemall, naaptol, fernsnpetals, caratlane, timtara, watchkart, bagskart, jewelkart etc. There has been a high splurge in the number of e-tailers in the last few years and hence, the space is quite cluttered.

With booming e-commerce, several key themes emerged:

1. A shift from a push to a pull to a demand-driven supply chain

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2. Customers gaining more power in the marketing channel

3. An enhanced role for information systems to gain better control of the supply chain

4. The elimination of unnecessary inventory in the supply chain

5. A focus on core capabilities and increased outsourcing of noncore activities to specialists

To understand the best practices and supply chain challenges from the supply chain perspective, we can assess the supply chain from the perspective of the firm or the perspective of the customer. We divide the entire supply chain in the following areas:

Areas of Focus:

Sourcing/ Vendor Management:

Each of the manufacturer or distributor has their own individual and perhaps, not easily integrable systems of packing, logistics, billing and measurement. Reconciliation of all of them is not impossible but is a very cumbersome task. The e-commerce firm does not maintain inventory for all the items available on the website. Difficulties arise when a customer order has to be sources from multiple vendors and needs to be collated and then send.

Moreover, the retailer has to deal with quality issues, since the product comes back to him and it is his brand that gets affected.

Inventory Management:

Decisions related to centralization or non-centralization of inventory also plays a crucial in determine how well can the firm meet the customer demand. It is also important to asses whether it will be beneficial to cross-serve markets by different warehouses if the inventory has a decentralized or regional system.

Distribution networks & Transportation:

Deciding on an optimal network design, analyzing which category of products to be drop shipped and which items to be kept in inventory is crucial. Such decisions also affect the lead time required to fulfill an order.

The delivery time is of utmost importance. In India, it is difficult to find and address because of lack of properly standardized "physical postal address system".

All of this is important as it plays directly into the overall customer experience of ecommerce. Companies like Flipkart are working around the issues in the logistics industry by setting up their own logistics

Reverse Logistics: Reverse logistics is another function of distribution management. Faster product obsolescence and more generous warranties have escalated the number of returns. Reverse logistics not only encompasses damaged or returned goods but also products designed for remanufacture hazardous materials, and reusable packaging.

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Loss or damage in transit is also one the concerns for the supply chain.

Some of the logistics challenges also assess the highly fragmented trucking industry, which carries most of the business-related transportation within India. The fragmented nature of the industry makes it hard for companies to manage the large number of carriers required to handle the shipment volumes. Although outsourcing of logistic activities to 3PL providers seems to be increasing, the organized 3 PL players are very limited in India. The situation is further compounded by India’s poor infrastructure facilities. India has one of world’s largest road networks, yet less than half of the roads are paved. The national highways account for less than 2% of the total road network, but carry 40% of traffic.

Order fulfillment

Rising customer expectations and short fulfilment deadlines call for effective planning that needs coordination and information sharing amongst all the players of the supply chain.

To generate a practicable plan, all supply chain constraints should be considered simultaneously by the fulfilment- planning process. These include transportation constraints such as truck capacity (use of FTL/LTL) and weight, use of alternate modes (Air, water, pipeline) and availability of downstream resources such as loading/unloading docks.

The process also may include packing, document preparation, customs brokerage, and inventory and warehouse management. One of the most important innovations here is the integration of distribution with transportation planning and scheduling through a comprehensive supply chain

Other factors which are needed for customer satisfaction are On-time delivery, tracking of orders, providing after-sales support and a forum to address their complaints. It is also very important to assess those complaints and put mechanism to improve those service areas.

The above parameters help us to look at the supply chain from the point of supply chain reliability and flexibility.

Supply Chain Reliability

Reliability is a measure of service quality and mainly depends upon the consistency of the supply chain to be able to deliver the right product to the right place, at the right time, in the right quantity and in the right condition. On-time delivery is one of the important customer certain metric. This determines whether a perfect delivery has taken place or not and it acts as measure of customer service level.

Supply Chain Flexibility

Flexibility can measure a system's ability to accommodate volume and schedule fluctuations from suppliers, manufacturers and customers. Indeed flexibility is vital to the success of the supply chain, since the supply chain exists in an uncertain environment. 'To understand the alertness of the supply chain in responding to market place changes, Supply chain response time metric can be used.

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Survey Creation:

This survey needs to be filled out by the supply chain team members of e-commerce firms. The data will be used only at aggregate level.

Key for certain terms used in the survey:

Does not Exist

Functionality not present

Functional

Functionality exists at basic level

Competitive

Some advanced functionality exists within capability

Advanced

Almost all advanced functionality is offered

Best in Class

Leading practices and all advanced functionality within a capability is offered

E-commerce firm specific parameters

Sourcing/Vendor Management related

1. How many vendors does your firm deals with?

<20

<50

Number

or Range

2. Do you face issues while dealing with vendors?

o

o

Yes

No

3. If yes, what are your most issues related with?

Quality of product

Timing of delivery

Pricing agreements

Packaging and lot size issues

Any other

Please elaborate on the issue:

of delivery □ Pricing agreements □ Packaging and lot size issues □ Any other Please elaborate

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4. If no, what competency, in your opinion makes your vendor management effective?

in your opinion makes your vendor management effective? 5. What would you say about the functionality

5. What would you say about the functionality of performance metrics to evaluate your suppliers on an on-going basis?

o

Does not Exist

o

Functional

o

Competitive

o

Advanced

o

Best in Class

If it exists, what are the parameters?

o Best in Class If it exists, what are the parameters? 6. Is your sourcing process

6. Is your sourcing process cost-effective?

o

o

Yes

No

7. Any specific practice that makes it so (either cost effective or non-effective)

that makes it so (either cost effective or non-effective) Inventory Management Related 8. Is your inventory

Inventory Management Related

8. Is your inventory centralized?

o

o

Yes

No

Any specific thoughts on the decision of making it centralized or decentralized?

on the decision of making it centralized or decentralized? 9. If decentralized, do you use cross

9. If decentralized, do you use cross warehouse supplies to meet demand in market areas not covered by that warehouse?

o

o

Yes

No

10. Do you use drop shipping for any items?

11

o

o

Yes

No

Category of Items:

11. What are issues that you most frequently face in inventory management?

that you most frequently face in inventory management? Distribution Network and Transportation 12. What is the

Distribution Network and Transportation

12. What is the distribution methodology that you use?

o

Warehousing to distribution drop points, then milk runs

o

Warehouse to customer directly

o

Use of 3PL

o

Any other

13. What would you say about the optimality of your network design?

o

Does not Exist

o

Functional

o

Competitive

o

Advanced

o

Best in Class

14. What improvements, if any, are you planning to undertake?

What improvements, if any, are you planning to undertake? 15. How do you handle the reverse

15. How do you handle the reverse logistics for return goods?

How do you handle the reverse logistics for return goods? 16. Any issues peculiar to the

16. Any issues peculiar to the reverse logistic handling?

16. Any issues peculiar to the reverse logistic handling? 17. Is loss or damage in transit

17. Is loss or damage in transit an issue for you?

o

o

Yes

No

18. Any specific steps taken to handle this issue?

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Customer specific parameters 19. What are your usual service levels? 20. What percentage of your

Customer specific parameters

19. What are your usual service levels?

20. What percentage of your orders are not delivered on time?

21. Do you provide order tracking/ order status services to your customer, once the order has been placed?

22. Are there issues coordinating with multiple vendors for a customer order of different products?

o

o

Yes

No

If yes, what kind of issues do you face?

o o Yes No If yes, what kind of issues do you face? 23. What would

23. What would say about providing after-sales support to your customer?

o

Does not Exist

o

Functional

o

Competitive

o

Advanced

o

Best in Class

If yes, what forms?

Call us option

Chat with us option

Email option

Any other

24. Most of the customer complaints that you receive are related to the areas of

Mismatch between expected product and delivered product

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Quality of product

Delayed deliveries

Payment issues

Refund issues

Difficult to return items

25. Any other issues you face in the supply chain that we have not captured?

issues □ Difficult to return items 25. Any other issues you face in the supply chain

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SURVEY TO IDENTIFY POSSIBLE AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT FOR E-RETAIL COMPANIES SELLING MULTIPLE PRODUCTS SUCH AS BOOKS, APPARELS AND ELECTRONICS.

The prime focus of any firm is to manage the attitude, trust and satisfaction of both its existing and prospective customers.

The customer retention is an important factor which can be linked to overall growth and profitability of a firm

The methodology followed here is

1. Hypothesis

2. Administration of Questionnaire (75 respondents)

3. Analysis of the Result

4. Recommendation based on the results

We developed various hypotheses to test which factors are of importance to the customers.

Hypothesis:

 

HYPOTHESIS

H1

UI and UX (User Interface experience) impact on customer satisfaction

has

a positive

H2

The quality of layout has a positive impact on trust of the customer

H3

Advertisements on 3 rd party websites trigger purchase of a product

H4

Reduced Search time leads to more product searches by the same customer during one unique session

H5

Reduced number of steps to complete the purchase leads to higher customer satisfaction

H6

The

Quality

of

Information

has

an

impact

on

willingness to purchase

 

H7

Customers believe in the testimonials by existing and trusted buyers

H8

Use of Higher Security while payment transaction leads to a feeling of safety with the customer

H9

Use of past history website to recommend products on advertisements leads to sense of intrusion to privacy

H10

Positive

impact

of

Recommended

Products

on

ecommerce websites

 

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H11 Processing Time post purchase has an impact on customer satisfaction H12 Online order tracking
H11
Processing
Time
post
purchase
has
an
impact
on
customer satisfaction
H12
Online order tracking gives a feeling of Safety of the
product
H13
Ease of Access to customer care has a positive impact
on customer satisfaction
H14
The lower Price Level of Products has a positive impact
on customer satisfaction
H15
Large
Product
assortment has
a positive effect
on
customer satisfaction
H16
Packaging
of
the
product
has
direct
impact
on
Perceived Quality of Service by the E-Retail Chain
H17
Instance
of
product not matching the exact
specification as shown in the website lead to negative
impact on trust on the retailer
H18
Delays in shipping have a negative impact on
willingness of customer to purchase any products from
the retailer
Questionnaire
Age *
 Less than 20
 20-30
 31-40
 40 and above
Gender *
 Male
 Female
Layout of Homepage
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Not Important
Select a value from a range of 1,Not
Important, to 10,Very Important,.
Very
Important
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Fast Loading time of the webpage

1 2

3

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8

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10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

 
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very

Very

Important

Recommended Search based on your past history *

 
 

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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Fast Search Utility

 

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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Adaptive search this feature prompts you while you are typing

 
 

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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
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Very

Important

Less number of steps to confirm an order

 
 

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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
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Very

Important

Secured Payment Portals

 

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Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

17

Low Order Processing Time

1 2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

 
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very

Very

Important

Ease of Access and Clarity in Response from Customer Care

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Online Order Tracking services

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Packaging of the product parcel

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Variety of Different Categories of Products available

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very
Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,. Very

Very

Important

Large number of alternate products available

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very
  Very

Very

Important

Not Important Select a value from a range of 1,Not Important, to 10,Very Important,.

On time Delivery of Products
On time Delivery of Products

18

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Not Important Select a value
1 2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Not Important
Select a value from a range of 1,Not
Important, to 10,Very Important,.
Very
Important
Intimation of Delivery through call or email a day prior to actual delivery
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Not Important
Select a value from a range of 1,Not
Important, to 10,Very Important,.
Very
Important
Delivery by Retailer Themselves and not from a third party ( Courier services)
Do you feel that its safer that person delivering the product should an employee of the retail chain
where you ordered from
1 2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Not Important
Select a value from a range of 1,Not
Important, to 10,Very Important,.
Very
Important
Product Matching the specification that you had ordered
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Not Important
Select a value from a range of 1,Not
Important, to 10,Very Important,.
Very
Important
Your opinion on advertisements in third party websites based on your past history
Helpful
Irrelevant
I feel they are intruding my privacy
Do you trust the testimonials by Trusted Buyers and others on the e-commerce website
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
No
Select a value from a range of 1,No,
to 10,Trustworthy,.
Trustworthy
19

ANALYSIS

   

Total

Scaled

out

 

Rank

Factor

Score

of 10

Weights

1

Secured Payment Portals

 

701

9.34666667

0.0644894

 

Product Matching the specification

     

2

that was ordered

 

686

9.14666667

0.0631095

3

Fast Search Utility

 

656

8.74666667

0.0603496

4

On time Delivery

 

648

8.64

0.0596136

5

Fast Loading time of the webpage

 

647

8.62666667

0.0595216

 

Ease

of

Access

and

Clarity

in

     

6

Response from Customer Care

645

8.6

0.0593376

7

Layout of Homepage

 

641

8.54666667

0.0589696

8

Variety of similar Products available

639

8.52

0.0587856

9

Low Order Processing Time

 

637

8.49333333

0.0586017

10

Online Order Tracking services

 

627

8.36

0.0576817

 

Intimation of Delivery through call or

     

11

email a day prior to actual delivery

 

610

8.13333333

0.0561178

12

Packaging of the product parcel

 

594

7.92

0.0546458

13

Alternate products available

 

574

7.65333333

0.0528059

 

Lesser number of steps to confirm

     

14

an order

 

568

7.57333333

0.0522539

15

Adaptive search

 

552

7.36

0.050782

 

Recommendations based on search

     

16

history

546

7.28

0.05023

17

Trust on User Testimonials

 

487

6.49333333

0.0448022

 

Delivery by Retailer Themselves and not from a third party ( Courier

     

18

services)

 

412

5.49333333

0.0379025

 

TOTAL

 

144.933333

 

The responses of the survey can be found here.

20

Recommendations

1. Security:

Use of Trusted Payment Portal users noted that they linked trust with

1. Verisign logo

2. The Lock Logo

3. Https which shows that the page is secured

Firms can use this to add more security features and take measures to ensure that the customers feel it is safe to transact with the retailers

2. Product should match all the specifications and described features and attributes such as shades

of color and size

Customers want the same product that has been ordered which matches the description which is shown on the retailer’s webpage

Customers feel that sometimes the product given has lesser or different features or specifications such as size or color shade (apparels) when compared to what was shown on the webpage

3. Faster Search Utility and Adaptive Search

Users want a faster search engine which should have adaptive search functionality which results in lessor time in finding the product

4. On Time Delivery

Users want the product to be delivered on the promised date.

As there is a high relation with a customers perception and trust on the retail firm ,which will directly impact the Repurchase intention

5. Real time Online Order Tracking services

Users want to know where their product is and the quality of information given here directly impacts the perception on quality of retailer.

6. Low Order Processing Time

Customers want shorter order processing time , and the product to be shipped as soon as possible.

7. Intimation of Delivery through call or email a day prior to actual delivery

21

Customers feel that this gives them independence to negotiate the timing or enables them to know when to be available so that they can receive the delivery.

8. Packaging of the Delivery

Users link the level of packaging directly the level of safety and quality measures followed by the retailers to ensure that the product reaches safely to the customers.

9. Delivery of Product either by representative of retailer or a reputed delivery firm

Customers want the product to be delivered by a reputed company and link this to the safety of the product and quality of the standards adopted by the e-retailer.

10.Lesser Number of steps to confirm an order

Customers want the least number of steps or clicks through which they can confirm their order and reach the a page which clearly specfies the following

1. Date of Delivery

2. Transaction Id and Timestamp

3. Billed amount

4. Tracking Link and other details

CONCLUSION

While Internet retail sales have increased tremendously in the past decade, they still represent a relatively small share of total retail sales. There are many retail firms that do not transact over the Internet yet. Understanding the drivers and barriers of e-commerce adoption has become increasingly important in the current day business. Better insight into entry determinants can help companies in improving their strategies and coping with the impact of new entry. Therefore, awareness of the industry evolutionary dynamics is important both for new entrants and incumbents. The focal contention is that while the entry to the Internet channel of early adopters might have been driven by the pursuit of strategic opportunities, for the majority of retailers, external influences played a key role in the adoption decision.

As this particular segment is still in its maturing stage, continuous improvement and innovation holds the key. A flawless platform for purchase is what the organizations are striving for. The easier the platform is, more the customer is attracted towards this particular channel of retailing.

22

REFERENCES

1. B.S. Sahay and Arun K. Gupta, The Supply Chain Critical Link to E-Commerce Success: An Indian Scenario, Vision: The Journal of Business Perspective 2001 5: 74

2. WANG Jin-fu, ZHANG Ai-xiang, 2009 Second International Symposium on Electronic Commerce and Security, E-Commerce in the Textile and Apparel Supply chain management: Framework and Case study

3. Darin Buelow, Raman Nath, Mohan Ram Akella. 2009. Optimizing the supply chain in India, Promise and peril , Deliotte

4. Toral Mehta, Hewlett-Packard Company, E-commerce and Supply Chain Management: Fitting the Pieces Together

5. Kavita, Dr. U.S.Pandey, E-Commerce Implementation, Problems, Solutions and Popularity in Managing Supply Chain: A Comparative Analysis of Different Top 10 Indian E-Commerce Companies

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