After much speculation, Amazon has launched in India as junglee.com – a shopping service for Indian customers. Contrary to what people had been hoping for, Amazon is not directly selling products in India. Instead, they are maintaining a catalog of about 1.2 crore products being sold online in India by multiple e-retailers and lets users search for them, read the reviews and then buy them from whichever site they choose to. In addition to product reviews, junglee.com will also have seller reviews so that users can take an informed decision. Interestingly, amazon.com is also listed as a seller. However,it might not be worth using it to purchase anything other than Kindle.
In my initial analysis I found that most products listed on junglee.com are overpriced compared to what they are priced at other popular ecommerce sites in India.
In my opinion, Amazon needs to do a lot more in order to establish properly in India. And I believe that they are planning to launch their own online store in due course of time. An interesting thing to note is that India’s top three online sellers – flipkart, letsbuy & Infibeam are not listed with junglee.com. They are the biggest online sellers in India and offer the cheapest prices on everything they sell. Another thing to note is that once someone has a good experience shopping online at a certain site, the person is more likely to trust that site for future purchases unless some other site is offering a significantly lower price. This means that junglee.com seller reviews will be most useful to first time online buyers, many of who might choose to rely on word of mouth reviews from their tech savvy friends instead of junglee.com. This makes all this effort more or less redundant for now.
I hope that amazon opens up their store soon. Although the current ecommerce sites are doing pretty well for now, however, everyone knows that everything goes down the toilet without healthy competition.
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