Amazon and Flipkart, the two biggest e-commerce retailers in the country, are locked in a battle to become the leading player in the fast-growing industry. Once again, the two players have announced back to back sales that will seem them go the whole hog, with discount offers, cashbacks, and other deals that will likely stretch their purse strings as well as resources. Flipkart, which has been reinvigorated with the $1.5 billion funding it received in April, will have offers for products in every single category it runs. Not to be outdone, the Amazon Great Indian Sale is expected to provide discounts of up to 50 percent, along with cashbacks.
First in the line-up is the Amazon sale, scheduled for May 11 to May 14, which will see discounts on smartphones, accessories, and other electronics. Flipkart is believed to have won the Diwali battle with Amazon, so the latter will look to one-up the current market leader with higher sales this time around. Moreover, with Amazon’s sights firmly set on becoming the leader of the Indian e-commerce market, the company will be going the extra mile to ensure it comes out on top in the upcoming scuffle between the two.
Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos in an earnings call earlier this week reaffirmed the company is working hard on its Indian operations. He said Amazon.in is the fastest-growing and most-visited e-commerce destination in India, adding the company will continue to make technology and infrastructure investments in the country. Launch of products such as the Fire Stick (optimised for India), and 18 original shows for Prime Video in India show that the force with which the company is investing in the market is not going to slow down anytime soon. Fulfilment capacity for sellers has increased 26 percent too, and Prime selection has grown 75 percent in nine months of its launch.
Flipkart, on the other hand, is marking 10 years of being in business with its Big 10 Sale, which will start on May 14 and last till May 18. But this sale is more than just a celebration of its tenth year of operations, as this will be the company’s first big sale since Kalyan Krishnamurthy was elevated to the position of Flipkart CEO. The success of the Diwali sale was largely credited to Krishnamurthy, so it will be a test that shows whether the lead in Diwali was a flash in the pan, or does it signal momentum that can be sustained over time.
For both sellers and the logistics teams, the Amazon and Flipkart sales will mean the return of big business. Sellers can expect to ship goods 3-4 times their average in this week-long sale period. Similarly, the logistics teams will have to stretch their limits to meet the fulfilment schedules for the two mega-sales. On the other hand, consumers will enjoy heavy discounts across popular categories.
These Amazon and Flipkart sales are, of course, not a make-or-break situation for either company as their battle is expected to continue for a while more before a winner can be decided. They will, nonetheless, be crucial in creating the stepping stones towards the crown that is still to be conferred on either.