Growing Internet and smartphone penetration, rising income levels among others are helping the small cities in India to rise on the e-commerce roadmap with online market place giant eBay experiencing 50 per cent of its business coming from the tier II and III cities.
Besides, the US-based firm today unveiled a report -- Commerce 3.0 -- which revealed that Indian sellers on eBay are exporting merchandise to 31 international markets with the US, the UK and Australia being the main trading partners.
According to the eBay report, Internet-enabled trade is providing a level playing field to small entrepreneurs.
"India is experiencing tremendous growth and the potential it has is very promising. We are seeing almost 50 per cent of the business coming from tier II and III cities," eBay India Managing Director Latif Nathani told PTI.
Elaborating on the Commerce 3.0, he said the report analyses the critical role being played by new technologies in revolutionising the way India buy and sell.
Through this report eBay aims to highlight the abundant opportunities offered by internet-enabled trade in India. e-commerce allows small retailers to become micro- multinationals, small businesses with global customers, he added.
"Over 98 per cent of eBay sellers export in contrast with only 10 per cent of traditional firms," the report said.
Today the US, the UK and Australia are India's main trading partners on eBay, while Australia and Russia are experiencing the largest export growth from India, it added.
"With domestic sellers on eBay India reaching out to an average of a 19 states across the country, eBay boosts inter state trade in India," the report said.
Sellers located in Delhi and Maharashtra by far dominate as the largest net exporters within India. Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh are the largest net consumers.
"The full potential of Internet-enabled trade has not yet been realised, eBay's report said adding that the trade needs an enabling policy environment.
It is currently subject to a wide range of restrictions and faces trade barriers, especially for crossborder transactions, it added.
According to industry estimates, India's e-commerce sector is expected to account for 7 per cent share of the country's retail market amounting to USD 60 billion by 2023.
The size of the industry was USD 1.5 billion in 2012 (exclusive of tickets) and grew to USD 2.5 to 2.8 billion in 2013. The number of online shoppers has more than doubled to 20 million shoppers in 2013 from 8 million in 2012.