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Chinese products hugely popular on Amazon, Flipkart despite anti-China sentiment - here is why

There were numerous non-branded products sold on Amazon, Flipkart showcasing China as their country of origin.

October 23, 2020 / 07:59 PM IST
Representative picture.

Representative picture.

#BoycottChineseProducts, a Twitter sentiment was nowhere to be seen on the e-commerce websites -- Amazon and Flipkart where Chinese smartphones, televisions, among other devices remained popular choices for consumers, many of which even got out of stock during the festive season sale in 2020.

While announcing the growth in sales during Big Billion Days (BBD), earlier this week, Flipkart said that Realme devices saw 2X growth this year over BBD in 2019. It did not share the number of devices sold.

Amazon, too, said that the top-sold categories were smartphones, large appliances and consumer electronics with leading brands such as OnePlus and Xiaomi making record sales without sharing the total number of devices sold.

Flipkart and Amazon did not respond to the queries for this story.

There were also numerous non-branded products sold on the two e-commerce websites showcasing China as their country of origin.


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What makes these products so lucrative for customers and why do nationalism not come in place while buying cheap Chinese products for Indians?

Well, the answer is clear. High end technology at an affordable pricing.

"The anti- Chinese product sentiment is no longer scented around. In the space of affordable electronics in particular, consumers seem to have taken a call that quality and price, and importantly the precious equation between the two, matters more than origin," said Harish Bijoor, brand consultant and founder of Harish Bijoor Consults Inc.

What's interesting is that Amazon and Flipkart are already at the radar of the government for displaying products without mentioning their country of origin.

While India hasn't asked etailers to ban Chinese products. The idea is to highlight the country of origin is to ensure that the consumers make an informed decision while making the purchase at a time when nationalism is ruling the roost.

While Flipkart has concluded its flagship Big Billion Days sale, Amazon this year is extending its Great Indian Festival sale for one month starting October 17.

"Right now there is no perfect substitute for, say, a Chinese TV. Samsung can compete in phones, but customers will buy Chinese products because that's giving them the best price. For most electronics, Chinese goods are the cheapest with reasonable quality, so bulk demand follows," said Satish Meena, Senior Forecast Analyst of research and consultancy firm Forrester.

According to Meena, India has also not reduced imports from China and for an end consumer politics takes a backstage perhaps due to the lack of enough domestic brands.
Priyanka Sahay
M. Sriram
first published: Oct 23, 2020 03:31 pm

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