Google enters India's massive market where Flipkart and Amazon have been battling for e-commerce dominance
Google is bringing the Shopping tab to Google Search and launching a new separate Shopping home page in India as it sets its sites on bringing more merchants and hundreds of millions of Indian consumers into its ecosystem. “We hope this enables all kinds of retailers, especially those who have never had an online presence, to reach millions of new consumers,” Google Shopping VP Surojit Chatterjee, said in a statement. There are some 20 million retail-oriented small businesses in India, according to census data. Of the 400 million Indian consumers online, fewer than a third currently make purchases online, according to Chatterjee.
With the launch, announced Thursday, Google is also expanding Merchant Center to support Hindi, in addition to English. Sellers will be able to upload their product feeds to Merchant Center in Hindi and promote their products on Google Shopping to users who search in that language. It’s estimated roughly 44 percent of the country speaks Hindi.
Google is not the only company competing for consumer and seller attention in India. Google Shopping comes to India in an e-commerce landscape dominated by two major players: Walmart subsidiary and India native Flipkart, where Chatterjee previously served as head of product, and Amazon, which launched a Hindi site in September. Flipkart has been taking e-commerce share from Amazon, which is estimated to have 44 percent of the e-commerce market in India versus Flipkart’s 40 percent.