From Dussehra to Durga Puja, from Diwali to Christmas – the final months of the year are packed with festivals of all kind. As the festive season rages across the country, the sales graph grows steadily upwards. This has happened in past years as well– as individuals have shopped for, and bought, new products during the festive season – and despite the pandemic being somewhat of a dampener, e-commerce has boomed during the festive season in India.

E-commerce has become a viable alternative as the pandemic has made it difficult to physically shop for what you are looking for. This popularity of is evident as the share of online sales of smartphones has grown to around 60% in the first fortnight of Navratri-Dussehra, while the sale of TVs grew from 31% to 40% in the same period last year. Additionally, the sales of refrigerators, air-conditioners, washing machines, and kitchen appliances rose to 9-10% from 6-8%. Overall, gross sales via e-commerce this festive season have come to $8.3 billion, surpassing RedSeer’s estimate of $7 billion.

“The festive season this year has been one that is driven by a larger theme of affordability. Constructs were built carefully by the platforms through BNPL (buy now, pay later) schemes and bank tie-ups, as well as seller driven discounts to serve up the most competitive prices of top leading brands and serve the aspiring customer,” Ujjwal Chaudhry, associate partner at market research firm RedSeer Consulting, said in a statement.

Studies by RedSeer showed that the overall online shopper base grew by around 20% when compared to the last festive season – there is an overall increase of around 1.2 times in the total number of shoppers this year to come at 62 million. Additionally, around ₹68 worth of smartphones were sold every hour across online platforms during the festive sales period. As e-commerce expanded, customers from Tier-III towns bought expensive products online.

According to the report, most people used Flipkart to make purchases online – the platform leads with a 64% GMV share, while Amazon is next with 28%. It added that 73% of the GMV during the first week of online sales comprised of sales of TVs, smartphones, and appliances.

The fashion and apparel categories has grown as well. The report states that e-commerce and social commerce platforms are offering additional discounts of up to 40% or more additional discounts on the back of “a favorable perspective of forecasted volume sales and growth during the upcoming festive season.”

This growth is evident from the case of Myntra, which said that it had five million customers and eight million orders across categories during its festive sale event.