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Users may now choose more easily and spend less time going between locations thanks to the traditional system of buying from businesses and the online purchase of goods. Even basic necessities for our daily lives, including groceries and veggies, are available online. The consumer has profited from e-commerce in many ways, but it has also had certain drawbacks.
E-commerce is defined as the exchange of goods and services as well as the transfer of money or data over an electronic network, most notably the internet. These commercial exchanges can be between businesses, consumers, businesses, or consumers and businesses. The extensive use of e-commerce platforms like Amazon and eBay over the past 20 years has significantly increased. And during and after the COVID-19 pandemic there is a rise of over 16%.
Advantages and Disadvantages of E-Commerce
- Availability: E-commerce sites are accessible all the time, barring planned maintenance and downtime. Some websites could have a tendency to only be accessible during specific times of the day.
- Speed of Access: While crowds can slow down customers in a physical store, these websites load swiftly and easily. A few clicks can also complete the transaction.
- A wide range of options is available, making it simpler to see and select what is appropriate for a particular person. The user can compare and view the market availability thanks to this variety.
- International Reach: With e-commerce, companies can market to anybody with an internet connection.
- Lower Costs: Pure play e-commerce companies do not have to pay rent, merchandise, or cashiers, which are expenses associated with operating physical locations.
Besides these advantages, there are some disadvantages as well-
- Limited customer service- The site may only provide support during certain hours, and its online service options may be difficult to navigate or not answer a specific question.
- Security- Skilled hackers can create authentic-looking websites that claim to sell well-known products. Legitimate E-commerce sites also carry risks, especially when customers store their credit card information with the retailer to make future purchases easier.
Is there a need for an E-Commerce system for Construction materials?
As the outcome of the pandemic unlike other industries and professions 75% of the professionals in the construction sector plan to increase their investment in digital transformation. Specifically, the construction sector has faced major losses during such hard times, making questionable the fundamentals of how the industry works and coming to the realization that the whole sector is lagging when it comes to digitization. In a survey done in 2019 the opinion of the people whereas below-
The majority of respondents said that they concur that digitization will change the way they operate. Despite having a modest share of the market for building products, online sales exist for the same reason. In this line of work, craftsmen still pick up the products for the day, therefore a portion of the sales still come from the old-fashioned relationship.
The vast majority of sectors have shifted to B2B e-commerce since the post-covid environment. Building materials industry representatives would not be able to visit construction sites as regularly as they once could. As a result, online shopping grew popular. Additionally, this hastened the acceptance of online purchases and sales of equipment.
To remain successful, the building materials market must invest in becoming digitally agile and expanding its online offerings.
E-Commerce impact on Construction Industry
E-importance commerce’s for all transactional businesses in the years leading up to and after COVID-19 cannot be denied. Simply put, the pandemic has made digitization impossible to resist. As a result, digital reforms in the heavy equipment and component industries have already begun, and over the next five years, they are expected to intensify. Although other analysts believe that the change to e-commerce will have little impact on the market for construction equipment because buyers still favor phone-based transactions.
No matter how great a website is or how rapidly individuals change their habits, many people still prefer making phone calls while conducting business. The construction equipment industry is only just beginning to adopt e-commerce. However, the more suppliers struggle to integrate e-commerce, the longer they wait.
However, the longer supplier delay adopting e-commerce, the more they run the danger of losing or missing out on innovative clients.
Some of the websites in India which give such e-commerce services are listed below-
MaterialTree Construction Simplified-
This website mainly supplies in the area of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana. They have categories that have Building Materials, Electrical, Plumbing, Plywood and Planks, Floor and Wall, Doors, and Windows. Along with this, they have planning tools that have building Material Calculators which consist of Concrete, Steel, Brick, and Block calculators, Flooring, Wood.
Generic Calculator, and a Construction Cost Estimation.
b-Easy Solutions Private Limited is supplying in Banglore and Karnataka. They are Bhuwalka Premier Group which carries the legacy of manufacturing and supplying extremely robust BHUWALKA Steel TMT bars. This online portal and application also bear equal delight in supplying such trusted and durable building materials in a more convenient way. They have also supplied these bars to some landmark projects such as Prestige UB City, The Leela Palace, The Brigade World Trade Centre, Mantri Mall, and many more.
Besides supplying the bars they also supply cement, MSand,PSand, and Aggregates. With these, the basic construction Material Calculator is also provided where one could easily calculate the no. tonnes, No.of Kg, No. of Rods, and the No. of Bundles needed in both Steel Calculator and RCC Calculator.
Consideration for successful e-commerce in the building industry
Collaborate with knowledgeable suppliers-
You are choosing the Manufacturer who can offer operational assistance and advice to help trailer online products to your customers.
Develop an effective strategy with a clear business plan-
Specific strategies include goals and criteria to track and evaluate online performance. There should be a defined pilot or test phase, including a customer service briefing, preparing market and campaigns, and setting up analytics.
Offer an online Portfolio of relevant products-
The portfolio should be focused and the selection should ensure products sold are appropriate for eCommerce.
Strong visual Imagery-
Online content must be SEO-Optimized, with keywords to ensure greater online searchability. Good visual content is vital to a successful e-commerce platform. Images should be high resolution and visually appealing. These impact the buyer that are buying the products.
Use analytics to track user progress-
Analytics enables businesses to better understand their customer. Starting with a target of how many people on want to reach, businesses can learn more about who is buying from them.
Reviews and rating page-
A review and rating page is vital to a successful e-commerce marketplace. Review and rating give the business a unique opportunity to receive direct customer feedback, which can be used to improve product features and quality.
All though there is a rise in the digitalization in the sector of Building Material Construction. People will slowly adapt to the change to buy products online. But it becomes extremely difficult to build the trust of the buyers as the products sold online will determine the strength of the building. Along with these the relationship between the buyer and the online portal will first happen only from the physical, old traditional relationship generated in the shop.
On that note, I believe that it is necessary to establish such an online portal to achieve a wide range of products with a good quality market which would reach to not only technical people but also common man gradually.