Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Factors Influencing Online Buying Behavior of College Students: A Qualitative Analysis

Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Factors Influencing Online Buying Behavior of College Students: A Qualitative Analysis

Article excerpt

The Indian retail industry has emerged as one of the most dynamic and fast-paced industries due to the entry of several new players. It accounts for over 10 per cent of the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and around 8 per cent of the employment. India is the world's fifth-largest global destination in the retail space (IBEF, 2015). The Boston Consulting Group and Retailers Association of India published a report titled, Retail 2020: Retrospect, Reinvent, Rewrite, highlighting that India's retail market is expected to nearly double to US$ 1 trillion by 2020 from US$ 600 billion in 2015, driven by income growth, urbanisation and attitudinal shifts (IBEF, 2015).

The Indian e-retail (excluding travel-related transactions) market is pegged at around US $3 billion at present, and is expected to grow to around US $22 billion in five years, according to a CLSA report (Mookerji, 2014). India's e-retail is expanding at a compounded annual growth rate of about 34 per cent, according to a report by Digital Commerce (Mookerji, 2014). With 75% of online audience between the age group of 15-34 years, India is one of the youngest online demographic globally (comScore, 2012). Out of this, 15-24 years of age group segment constitutes to 36% of online consumers (KPMG, 2014) and has been the fastest growing age segment online with user growth being contributed by both male and female segments (comScore, 2012).

Increased Internet penetration, improved security measures, convenience of shopping in lives pressed for time, and, of course, dozens of retailers to choose from--these are a few factors that are attracting more and more consumers to shop online (Joshi & Upadhyay, 2014). Infact, mega etailing events like Flipkart's Big Billion Day and the three-day Great Online Shopping Festival (GOSF 2014), organised by Internet giant Google were termed a huge success with consumers flocking to sites, and exceeding companies' expectations (Fibre2fashion News Desk, 2015).

Mumbai (also known as Bombay) the capital city of the Indian state of Maharashtra, was selected as the research location as it has more internet users than any other city in the country, according to data released by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI, 2013). The report added that the growth in the Internet users in metros like Mumbai is also driven by increasing access to the internet among students (Malhotra, 2013).

Youth constitutes a considerable proportion of the online users with India's youth comprising a significantly larger share than the global internet users (KPMG, 2014). The youth (college going students) accounts for 29% of the active internet users (IAMAI, 2013). There are various factors which have been instrumental in bringing about this change with the major ones being the increase in mass media exposure and also the rising number of social networking apps targeting the youth (IAMAI, 2013). Also, internet as a medium has given power to the youth to do things which were not possible earlier like taking active part and generating support for social causes etc. And this is making it easier for the youth to share his/her voice with the world (IAMAI, 2013). In consideration with increase in the internet usage and online shopping among the college students, the purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the factors that influence the online buying behavior of the college students in Mumbai

Literature Review

The study of Online Buying Behavior has been one of the major research agendas in both Marketing Sciences and Information Systems with the rapidly growing e-business. Out of the many researches in the aforesaid related area, some of the pertinent literature related to this study is discussed here.

An analysis of the trends on online shopping in India by Kiran et al. (2008), points out that there is a growing awareness of getting more information through websites. There is an increasing trend of using Internet for booking tickets, buying books and music but the scene has not transformed dramatically in case of India. …

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