Udaipur : FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and one of the world’s largest express transportation companies, shared the findings of a recentsmall and medium enterprise (SME)-focused survey in India. The FedEx-commissioned survey was conducted by the independent research firm Dun & Bradstreet India to identify trends in e-commerce and digital adoption among SMEsduring the COVID-19 pandemic.
The survey reveals a sense of optimism among SMEsin India, largely driven by the growth in e-commerce sales, with 30% of small businesses and 40% of medium businessesseeing a rise in e-commerce sales since lockdowns began. The pandemic and its resulting restrictions have led to a shift in consumer behavior towards e-commerce, with 35% of small businesses and 54% of medium businesses surveyed believing that e-commerce sales will improve their financial growthfollowing COVID-19.
During this festive season, SMEs are enhancing their e-commerce capabilities and rethinking their online shopping strategies in anticipation of significant sales. Thirty-four percent of surveyed SMEs expect strong peak season demand. This matches the findings published by Redseer, which stated that peak season sales in India are expected to almost double this year,reaching $7 billion in gross merchandise value compared to $3.8 billion in the same period last year. With the expected continued rise in e-commerce sales, 80% of medium and 58% of small businesses in the FedEx-commissioned survey also believe that increased buying behavior on e-commerce platforms will continue following the pandemic.
SMEs are also embracing digital solutions, with 76% of small businessesand 60% of medium businesses stating that they are seeing a rise in digital payments receivedsince the start of the pandemic.Digital wallets are also seeing greater adoption, with higher rates among small businesses (28%), than medium businesses (7%).
Commentingon the survey results, Mohamad Sayegh, vice president Operations for FedEx Express in India said, “Throughout COVID-19, we have seen that consumers are increasingly shopping fromhome, and with continued travel limitations and efforts to control the spread of the virus likely to prevent people from visiting family and friends this festive season, more gifts are likely to be shipped this year, rather than delivered in person.”
“With the expected continued surge ine-commerce sales, FedEx has been working with businesses to encourage their customers to shop and ship early. We are confident our global and domestic networks will support the demands of each business and their customers.” he added.
The value of fast and secure shipping is also a consideration for both shoppers and the businesses selling online. The survey highlighted that 41% of SMEs believe that their customers would pay more for faster delivery, making the choice of the right logistics service provider withthe ability to support business growth driven by time-sensitive shipments a priority for businesses.
FedEx has a long history of supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses and is committed to help them reach their full potential. FedEx has held several editions of their Small Business Grant Contest in India, which provides small businesses with the inspiration and financial resources to take their businesses global, helping them to grow their footprint and sharpen their competitive edge.
FedEx has also organized the SME Connect series, a knowledge-sharing and thoughtleadership platform for SME customersin Surat, Udaipur, and Chennai. The SME Connect series also provides a forum for these businesses to interact with industry experts for solution oriented discussions to support their businesses and future growth.