NEW DELHI: The Indian e-tailing market is set to touch $15 billion and the country will have 100 million online shoppers by 2016, says a research report released by Google on Thursday. At present, the domestic e-tailing market is pegged at $3.5 billion, which is less than 0.5% of the $650 billion retail industry.


The findings of the Google report, done in collaboration with Forrester Research, suggest that over 50 million new buyers will come from tier 1 and tier 2 cities. Interestingly, women buyers in tier 1 cities were more engaged in online shopping, and outspent men by two times. Women were also responsible for driving growth in categories like apparels, beauty and skincare, home furnishing, baby products and jewellery.


Nitin Bawankule, industry director for e-commerce, local and classifieds, Google India, said jewellery is one of the most promising categories to gain traction in online retail in recent months. “We will see it grow,” he said.


Looking at the growth trends of the categories, the report also projected that 40 million women are estimated to shop online in India by 2016 and 75% of online shoppers highlighted ‘convenience’ and ‘variety’ as major reasons to shop online in addition to discounts. Over 60% respondents of the survey also felt that buying online was directly correlated with social status. Mobile phones emerged as an important access device for online shoppers with one out of three online buyers transacting on their mobile phones in tier 1 and tier 2 cities. In tier 3 cities, one in two buyers said they use mobile phones to purchase products online.