Amazon gears up for Small Business Day on June 27 as SMEs go digital
Amazon India is gearing up for the third edition of Small Business Day on June 27. The event coincides with the Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSME) Day.
Amazon’s SMB Day 2020 comes amid a revived focus on helping small entrepreneurs and startups recover from the economic effect of Covid 19-related lockdowns. A transition to online is widely believed to help revive these small firms, largely unorganised and offline so far. The said transition, however, is depended on the e-commerce and technology-focused firms.
Of late, we have seen Reliance entering the offline-to-online segment with JioMart. The platform brings local kirana stores to an online platform. JioMart also leverages from Facebook-owned WhatsApp to bridge the gap between end-users and kirana stores.
Amazon also runs a similar programme called “Local Shops on Amazon” to bring additional and virtual footfalls to the traditional brick-and-mortar stores. The bet on the offline-to-online programme appears to have begun paying.
“We have seen the new seller registration on our portal increase by more than 40% in the last few weeks, compared to the first 12 weeks of the year that is pre-Covid 19 phase,” Gopal Pillai, Vice President, Seller Services at Amazon India, said in an interview with Hindustan Times.
“We are happy to see how the local shops approached. With the incremental benefit to serve the entire country through our transportation network is really creating a lot of interest among the small and medium businesses across the country. And we hope the SMB day will further accelerate that interest and actual demand from customers,” he added.
Pillai said that the company’s programmes are helping sellers not just in one dimension but in many more categories ranging from mobile shops to kirana stores.
On the role of an e-commerce company such as Amazon, Pillai cited another study which covers over 2,000 small businesses.
“More than 75 per cent of businesses said we needed platforms like Amazon to mitigate that risk from reduced demand in the local footfall. And that study was done about eight weeks ago, what we are noticing post lockdown a significant surge, more than 50% comparatively level, on search terms such as selling on Amazon, selling online and more,” he said.
SMB Day 2019 & 2020
The 2019 iteration of Amazon SMB Day 2019 saw over 400 sellers registering record-breaking sales. Pillai revealed many sellers saw 1000x growth on that day. More than 2,800 sellers witnessed 10x growth. Amazon Karigar programme saw 2.5x growth. Amazon Launchpad and Amazon Saheli programmes registered 1.7x and 1.4x growth, respectively.
“We hope the third business day, the third edition of that is coming this Saturday, will continue to help businesses particularly in the era of post lockdowns. As small businesses are facing a lot of issues, we hope that customers will come at large and celebrate,” he said.