For the past several years, e-commerce in India has grown at a breakneck speed. Its market size has grown from USD $20 billion in 2015 to USD $50 billion in 2019. Despite the ongoing pandemic, the e-commerce market has registered a growth of 36 percent year-over-year in the last quarter of 2020. The number of Active Internet Users in India is also expected to grow to 900 million by 2025 compared to 622 million in 2020.
Despite driving e-commerce, the pandemic has had an unprecedented socio-economic adverse impact in India. It has vividly exposed the already existing economic divide within the society. It has not only questioned our growth models but has also forced us to revisit our claims of inclusivity and development.
This has happened across sectors and e-commerce is no exception. The pandemic has exposed the wide chasm between the connected and the unconnected, revealing just how far behind many are in the digital uptake. The pandemic has thus highlighted the agenda that India must prioritise in the wake of the ‘new normal’ – without digital inclusivity measures there is a greater risk that digital innovations, including e-commerce, will continue to increase inequality rather than advancing equity.