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WINTER SHOPPING SHIFTING TOWARDS ONLINE SHOPS

To create a cashless society, minimize risk and provide ease to customers while paying; eCommerce transaction is becoming a convenient way. Customer can buy products and services like, order groceries, book tickets and reserve hotels without the hassle of going outside of home. Digital transaction through eCommerce is growing at an amazing speed. The online market is growing at a rate more than hundred percent every year and this also attracting foreign investments into the country. Recently ‘Alibaba’ has acquired ‘Daraz’ fully at their ownership.

Southeast Bank Limited has introduced eCommerce Payment Gateway for local and foreign customers and over 1 lac cards are being processed through the Gateway. SEBL is also taking cards of other banks over the Gateway. SEBL encourages the customers to use cards instead of cash transactions. The population can slowly understand the concept of card transactions, the facilities, advantages and securities associated with the system.

Private Banks in Bangladesh are offering promotions throughout the year to motivate cardholders towards digital platform. These promotions are widely seen on the festive seasons. Merchants increase their drives to offer lucrative deals based on the seasons to attract new customers and increase loyal customer base.

Since winter in Bangladesh typically starts from late October and stays until February, customers start looking for winter clothing, like sweaters, and coats at the start of October. Some eCommerce companies are way advanced as they purchase products in bulk with lower prices so that they can sell in a moderate price

May be one of the main reasons customers prefer shifting towards online shopping over offline shops is price comparison advantage. Customer can compare prices and can find the best deals online. They are also at their liberty to shop; not restricted to the opening and closing time that physical outlets have. Perhaps, due to the short span of the sale time, most of the merchants offer free shopping during winter season. They are also promoting new shopping models such as daily deals and flash sales that are generating excitement and impulsive purchases.

The capability to compare shops, research products and facility to purchase from Smartphones and Tables gives eCommerce merchants another advantage over brick and mortar sellers. Working people and professionals usually busy during weekdays and they want to enjoy weekends. They prefer to purchase online and get products/groceries delivered at home while they are at home on the weekends. In recent times, we have seen most of the new products are launched through online before they are available on the physical market. Even in bad economic times, people shop when they are bored.

During this winter, our targeted time was November to December, Southeast Bank Limited offered attractive discounts for cardholders in collaboration with Daraz Bangladesh various discount scheme like  11.11, Fatafati Friday, 12.12; Win Trip for Two to Singapore with Mastercard. Christmas and Victory day are also reasons for increased sales volume during winter.

Besides, all the good happenings in online shopping arena, consumers are also having problems like – not receiving products, receiving wrong products, damaged goods, and no refund or return policy, non compliance with the declared policy etc.

As eCommerce is a growing market in Bangladesh with a high prospect; this is the right time for government bodies and relevant associations to create a policy and impose rules and regulations for a transparent ecosystem which will ensure and increase the level of service in this sector. Genuine sellers will be benefited with higher sales volume and consumers with better services.

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