Internet Market Pie in India- Part 2

I have few updates to the first part of this analysis I wrote about and I shall also cover some aspects of web surfing like – what do people like to do most on the internet? what are the various access points for Indians of various age groups of Internet? what can prevent/accelerate the adoption of internet in India?

Tweet-tweet – You have Updates!

The data I had in my last post was of Feb 2009, apparently Indians showed a spike of 74% and reaching 200K users in Mar 2009 (as reported by pluggd.in here) as opposed to smsgupshup which is a group sms and interaction platform and claims about 20M users and $150,000 in revenue/month with over 90% of the users from India (as reported here). The semiconductor market from where I come, we report yearly CAGRs, but I guess, the game is played slightly differently on the internet, especially the web2.0 adoption space…

Show Me The Job!

It appears that about over 70% Indians are out searching for jobs on the internet – that is a mind-boggling number! So, one might wonder is this somewhat related to a career choice related dissatisfaction? Is it related to the high attrition rates prevalent in the hi-tech and services sector in India and hence, the data is just skewed because that category constitutes a large % of the Indian netizens? Or is it related to the fact that there is a serious lack of transparency and being in-the-know of what is out there for the job scenario is one of the most important things for Indian net users? Whatever it is, there is definitely an opportunity for building better career based services that satiates this curiosity and tempers the dissatisfaction of landing up “somewhere” without a growth path.

I talk English, I walk English, but I don’t read Engilsh

Next in line is the patronage of vernacular-based websites – this was revealing data to me to know that about 42% of Indian netizens use a local language website. I guess, even if the numbers are up/down 10-15%, the very fact that people prefer to see internet as an extension of their reading habits from other mediums is a good insight to keep in mind for not only internet marketeers but also products and services being offered for reach and penetration in India. So, if I offer a dating site in 4/5 major languages in India, will it be a big hit in small pockets, adding up to a large satisfied customer base? Maybe, it is already out there – please point out if you know…

The travel economies
I think, the largest example for successful E-commerce in India has been around travel. With about 20% of Indian net users having purchased a ticket (rail/bus/train) online at some point and I can relate to this. The next, in line, would be books, in my opinion, but I don’t have any data on that. Again, the fact that stands out here is that Indians pay for tangible utility delivered which is greater than the sum of all expense + trouble they would go through to make a payment online. Getting access to a travel ticket without having to pay a huge commission to an agent or standing in a long queue early in the morning to get the tickets before they are sold out are all good examples of costs which are overturned by the book online phenomena, for which the Indian is willing to sacrifice the irking thought that my card might get misused!

So, what problem are you solving really, that is way more than the service that you are offering to the Internet user?

I think, we have covered a fair ground here on data and insights, I shall reserve the discussion around access points and adoption for a later post.

Comments/feedback are most welcome.

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