What To Expect From New Standards For Live Commerce In India

There has been a talk by the government with stakeholders who objected to the regulatory framework for live commerce in India. Under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, the Bureau of Indian Standards has started to assess the need for guidelines for the new form of e-Commerce as mentioned by a renowned media house. There is a follow of moves by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for the issuance of international standards for live commerce.

The Indian standards recognition email reviewed by the media house has sought comments from members of the retail, e-Commerce, and e-Payment services sectional committee after the ISO floated a ballot for registering a new proposal on live commerce. The norms specified by the ISO have started the process of issuing new international standards to find a vote from member countries on whether a preliminary working item should be issued or not.

There are member countries examining the proposal in the context of policies or rules and trade interests. BIS confirmed the development of the media following email queries. A member of the BIS committee stated that it received the international standards body's request for comments. A reporter stated, "The idea essentially here is whether to follow the ISO guidelines or to customize as per market need".

The securities and exchange board of India (SEBI) is working on rules for the regulation of financial influencers after taking note of the increasing number of influencers advising to trade online without a license

Company Edification
The committee includes top-notch representatives from companies including Amazon India, Flipkart, Tata group, Reliance Industries, Paytm, Shiprocket, BigBasket, and others. There are includes officials from the ministries of electronics and information technology, MSME, corporate affairs, addition to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, Quality Council of India, and industry bodies including the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

The government move has arrived at a time when live commerce is witnessing increased participation from top e-Tailers such as Flipkart, Amazon India, and Myntra. Live commerce is a fair business in China and it relies on influencer shopping experts that hold live sessions on e-Commerce platforms. The idea is for shoppers for making such purchases while the Live stream runs. There are queries answered by the experts. At present, there are no separate guidelines for live commerce in India except the broader ones for the e-Commerce market place with regard to online shopping.

Live Commerce
Live commerce can be completed through multiple routes, which include social media platforms as well as short-video applications, where influencers, in partnership with brands, showcase products. Platforms such as Myntra and Amazon have contracts with influencers and various commercial aspects that are incorporated into the same.

There is a survey by the community Local Circles that showed 70 percent of its respondents felt live commerce will get useful and were keen on engaging in it. Acquiring the queries resolved in real time, pricing discussions, and after-sales queries that were among the features consumers might prefer in getting clarity during the sessions.

One grey part of live commerce is the accountability of the so called influencers in selling products. One person aware of how live commerce evolves stated, "The influencers are handpicked by the platforms in consultation with brands on their popularity and reach, among other factors".

Regulation of Rules
Indian authorities have already started the construction of a regulatory framework around influencers. The same includes guidelines by the government for social media influencers that are to prescribe penalties for failing in disclosing financial ties with brands. In a separate article, the securities and exchange board of India (SEBI) is working on rules for the regulation of financial influencers after taking note of the increasing number of influencers advising to trade online without a license.

A spokesperson for Myntra stated that it had been a five fold increase in traffic from M-Live (its live commerce vertical). As per the Flipkart owned firm, it has been in recently held news that there is a sale event in December that saw over 300 live sessions from brands such as Puma, Adidas, Nivea, Levi's, and others, along with leading influencers such as Santoshi Shetty, Karron S., and others. An e-Commerce industry executive stated that the idea is getting closer to getting users to spend more time on the platform through the sessions and one can make a purchase that is based on the session even after it is over.

Amazon India stated that streamed more than 450 hours of cumulative content during the festive sale season in 2022 and almost 10 percent of all visitors on Amazon India watched a live stream during the first week of the flagship sale event. There is a bet on live commerce and it has long-term potential in India as there is an essential role in how it is playing out in China. Among the established e-Commerce geographies, China was among the first to witnessing explode of sales through the channel.

In 2021, the management consulting McKinsey & Co stated that the value of China is a live e-Commerce market that grew at a compounded annual growth (CAGR) of more than 280 percent between 2017 and 2020 reaching an estimated $171 billion in 2020. The report noted that fashion and beauty were the top categories for live commerce in China and the concept could gain traction in a postpandemic scenario with the instore physical experiences drying up.

Experts are stating there are outside of China which are witnessing commerce that has been unable for gaining traction in the Southeast Asia region, where there are several companies in the feature launch.

However, India is estimated for offering substantial potential with more than 600 million users of short form video by 2025, which is a report by Bain &Co in collaboration with Flipkart as shown.