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Is e-commerce going the ‘religion’ way?

E-commerce is a marketplace, where you can reach out to multiple vendors


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Puneet Sachdev

3 years ago | 2 min read

This is probably the most absurd thought that I ever had. Recently, I was on a trip to the eastern part of India and I had been to a lot of Hindu temples there. While entering one of these temples in Orissa, I was accompanied by my friend and a guy from West Bengal who I met just 15 minutes back.

I can’t recall the exact thought but due to some unknown reason I was thinking about the e-commerce companies. At that very moment the other guy came to me and said “See, how large these temples are. Imagine the amount of investment done in them 1000s of years ago”.

Suddenly, my mind converged both the thoughts into one and I started comparing the Hindu religion with e-commerce market. People might think that they are incomparable but there are certain nuances which when compared can make you think again:

  • Both e-commerce and Hindu religion had a high initial investment. by investment here in religion we mean the investment done 1000s of years ago in large temples, the return of which is still being roped by the successors. E-commerce is trying to gain the same position; money is flooding to establish the architecture and returns are not expected anywhere in short term. They too expect to make profits in a longer run only (though it might not be 1000s of years ;) ).
  • E-commerce is a marketplace, where you can reach out to multiple vendors for multiple product requirements at the same time. Similarly, Hinduism as a religion also have multiple options in terms of Gods, and you may reach out to any one of them to solve any of your problems or to seek their blessings.
    P.S.: Remember, Goddess Laxmi for wealth, Saraswati for good voice, Ganesha for starting anything new and so on…
  • One of the major promotional activity in any religion was to offer free food in the form of ‘Prasad’ to the followers of the God. And yes, then there are deals and offers being provided by these e-commerce portals which though makes them losses but earns them the customer.

The current e-commerce market is far far away from reaching its mature stage, but implementation of new technologies and marketing frameworks would make it reach its best soon.

All the companies till then are only interested in showing large customer base and are not bothered by the losses they are making everyday. Until and unless they have funding from the investors who are probably trusting the e-commerce companies the same way as a businessman who offers a donation in the temple, they see no problems ahead.

Our only hope here is, the way religious entities have been making money after establishing themselves, these e-commerce companies start doing the same very soon.

Note: The views expressed in this short write-up is not to target any religion in particular and I truly believe in God. :)

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