|Demand of the question Introduction. Contextual introduction. Body. Discuss how E-commerce can benefit farmers, small-scale industries and indigenous communities. Conclusion. Way forward.|
E-Commerce is a business model “enables a firm/individual to conduct business over an electronic network, typically the Internet.” The consumer and seller or service provider interaction gets better and more efficient. It has a tremendous potential to benefit farmers, small-scale industries and indigenous communities.
How can E-commerce benefit farmers, small-scale industries and indigenous communities?
- Accessibility: It helps by providing an accessible nationwide market for the farmer with equal prices for the quality of his produce.
- Middlemen elimination: E-Commerce presents an advantage to both consumers and farmers. It eliminates most middlemen and inventory reduction which makes it easy for a farmer’s to pass on the benefits to consumers at low prices. For instance, eNAM platform has helped farmers by directly connecting them to markets removing middlemen.
- Better sales: For the farmers, it promises more options for sale. It would increase their access to markets through warehouse based sales and thus obviate the need to transport his produce to the mandi.
- Marketing: It has been successfully used by a few enterprising people in agricultural marketing. For instance, Big Basket, amazon, books orders from online consumers and delivers sorted and cleaned groceries, vegetables and fruits to them.
- Small-scale industries:
- Increased Business Reach: One of the most significant advantages of e-commerce is that it connects small business to the people where it’s not possible for them to be present physically. By having an online store, one can sell your products/services from a single location thereby increasing profits.As business reaches more people, the customer base would grow, which will directly impact the number of sales and boost revenue.
- Low Operational Cost: One of the benefits of having an online store is that industries don’t have to build physical stores at all the locations where they want to sell products/services. A single e-Store would serve the purpose. This will keep your business operational cost on the lower side.
- Feedback: It provides an opportunity for customers to provide feedback directly to the seller, who can remove various discrepancies and ensure better products. While in a retail environment it is difficult to get customer reviews, it is much more comfortable and hassle-free online. One can ask customers for reviews online and build credibility by publishing these on social media platforms and other channels.
- Ease of Product tracking: Tracking a product online can be one of the most significant advantages of an e-commerce. One can quickly know the status of his inventory especially. Alternatively, one can also track products that will soon run out of stock in inventory and make it available beforehand.
- Indigenous communities:
- Access: With many Indigenous people living in remote communities, opportunities for traditional face-to-face commerce are extremely limited. Even in urban centers, the cost of setting up bricks-and-mortar shop-fronts limits business prospects for many Indigenous people, despite the high demand for their art, crafts and cultural tourism services. E-commerce potentially allows Indigenous people to sell direct to the public and keep all the profits, as well as accessing a much larger market while continuing to dwell on their traditional lands and maintaining their traditional culture.
- Middlemen elimination: E-Commerce presents an advantage to indigenous communities by removing middlemen. It eliminates most middlemen and which makes it easy for communities to earn all the profits, which is usually snatched by middlemen.
- Inclusive development: E-commerce helps promote efforts to harmonize modern technologies with traditional and indigenous knowledge for sustainable rural development.
Thus, e-commerce has a lot of potential in furthering benefits to farmers, small industries, and indigenous communities to reap profits. It provides platforms for them to connect with consumers directly and reap profits while providing quality products and services.