The Eid was somewhat disappointing for the e-commerce businesses in Pakistan as they failed to gain momentum with their sales. Physical stores enjoyed good sales during this Eid-ul-Fitr as opposed to online ones. Experts are of the view that people preferred putting their trust in physical stores.
The dip in online sales in Pakistan was surprising, especially if you consider the fact that online traffic has increased in the recent years with 57 million people online. Several online stores have stepped up to tap into this growing market. However, they are yet to fully gain the trust of the customers as they hesitate over the product quality online as well as exorbitant prices.
Another reason behind the dip in online sales on Eid as been attributed to uncertain delivery dates. People didn’t want to risk their Eid preparations by putting their trust on online stores that may or may not deliver their products on time.
Dip in Sales
According to available estimates, people spent around Rs 50-60 billion on Eid shopping in Pakistan’s biggest city – Karachi. However, online stores failed to gain a considerable share of this amount due to several reasons.
Anum Kamran, co-founder of e-tailer Buyon.pk, said that the sales were up 300% before Eid as compared to the rest of the year. However, in the run up to the Eid holidays, they failed to gain a solid ground. She added:
People tend to spend time with their families and dine out during Ramazan.
Talking about the delivery times and risks involved in ordering products e-commerce during this holiday, Nadir Baig of Vaira.pk told:
Nobody wants to take the risk on the occasion of Eid. Imagine if a shirt or trouser is not of the appropriate size, the person will not be able to get it changed on time.
Comparing the sales on Eid with those of Black / Blessed / White Friday, TCS-ECOM CEO Salman Hasan said:
The ratio of people shopping online during Ramazan is one-fifth of the sales on White Friday. In the fasting month, we’ve sold 17.5% of what we sold on White Friday.
According to rough estimates, Pakistan’s online retail market crossed $600 million in 2017. It is expected to touch $1 billion in the coming few years as people become more aware and comfortable with ordering stuff online.