Back in 2002 the Indian government introduced Indians to the concept of online booking of train tickets on IRCTC’s website. On the first day the online system was thrown open to public, only 29 tickets were booked online. Today more than 13 lakh tickets get booked in a day at the IRCTC website The portal came as a whiff of fresh air to millions of Indians because it meant saving time, no more queuing in front of the railway ticket booking counters, no more carrying cash around – all that got eliminated with this system of online booking. That is the power of this internet-enabled online booking/ordering system – be it railways, airlines, movie ticket booking, hotel booking, paying bills online, ordering food, recharging prepaid connections or shopping online!
Internet has surpassed all expectations and has achieved unthinkable feats that the common man could have never have dreamt in their wildest dreams. Of course all this has evolved from the brain of Homosapiens only – couple of technical geniuses somewhere on the planet in order to satisfy their personal pursuitsand queries gave birth to technology and gadgets that are performing miracles day-in and day-out for the masses. After all our standards of living , our comfort quotient have all enhanced because of these technical innovations leading us more towards that near perfect world that we all dream of!
Though as per records e-commerce penetration in the country as on date is comparatively lower than the USA or France that top the list of e-commerce transactions, it will not be long before the second most populated country of the world will surpass other nations in e-retail activities. With more than 470 million people having internet connection in India, every month there are about 6 million new buyers or e- commerce users in the country. That is the speed at which Indian internet users are getting hooked onto the concept of online shopping, paying for their utility bills, movie ticket booking or booking flight and rail tickets etc.
We, Indians conventionally are tuned to spending cash with about 75% of Indian households and consumers today engaged in buying products using cash. Till November 2016, before demonetization in India, about 95% of consumers in India were conducting cash transactions and about 90% of Indian merchants did not have the necessary infrastructure for accepting alternate payment forms.In the last two years, things have changed tremendously. As per a survey conducted it was found that 26% of Indians prefer to use their bank’s website to access various services and about the same number prefer using mobile Apps to enjoy services like online bill payments; recharging connections; airline, railway, movie ticket booking, paying monthly installments and more using their cards and net banking. While use of credit and debit card is on the rise during an online transaction, net banking is also not far behind. In 2011, only 7% of account holders were using this facility. Today more than 45 million people in India use online banking/net banking.