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Lockdown proved inflection point for e-commerce in India

Mar 24, 2021 12:31 PM IST

The Indian e-commerce market has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the pandemic, as containment measures introduced millions to the convenience of online shopping, and prompted seasoned online shoppers to buy more.

The pandemic-induced lockdown and movement curbs marked an inflection point for e-commerce in India, pushing demand to record highs, nudging new buyers as well as sellers onto digital platforms, and holding out the promise of lasting growth for players.

The Indian e-commerce market has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the pandemic, as containment measures introduced millions to the convenience of online shopping, and prompted seasoned online shoppers to buy more.

Social distancing compulsions through the year, massive smartphone base and reliable broadband galvanised e-commerce uptake beyond metros, deep into smaller cities and towns, bringing an element of ‘trust in online commerce.

The outbreak necessitated the use of new technology tools and non-contact formats to cater to unprecedented demand. Analysts said these shifts in consumer shopping traits are here to stay, post-pandemic.

COVID-19 Vaccine
Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
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