For many of us in India, shopping has always been about going to a shop, a mall looking for a thing we want to buy, making a decision at that moment and finally paying via cash. As the number of internet shopping sites swell, the need to go out and make a hurried buying decision is no longer there. For technology related products for example, one can browse through many forums and sites such as ours before making up their mind on exactly what they want to buy.
There’s a growing trend when it comes to electronics, including everything from flash drives to even TVs and notebooks, which cost more than a lakh. Even for these purchases, nowadays, people rely on online stores and more and more sales are there. Sometimes, the effort, money and time saved in going to the electronics street in your city and finding a shop that sells a product, and that too at a good price is just not worth it. Online shopping sites are going to get popular. We list a few interesting sites and we’d like to hear from you if you have any more to add to the list.
Flipkart - best known for its prices and prompt service
Flipkart started off as an online book store, but of late, it’s better known for a number of things, including a popular place to buy electronics. Sure, you won’t find motherboards and graphics cards there, but everything from mobile phone covers to high-definition TVs are on offer. The site design is simple and intuitive, making browsing for the product you’re looking for simple. Brand coverage is also very good, so you will find most of the mainstream brands and products there. Prices are also extremely competitive and products in some categories are often cheaper online, than in retail stores. The variety of movies and game titles also makes it 'the' place to shop online.
A reputation for delivering goods promptly in most cases also makes it a very popular spot for anyone looking to buying gadgets. We’ve also noticed a lot of products, not available in market being available for pre-order.
Theitdepot - Mainly for the computer user
Buying PC hardware online in India has been much more difficult. There are few shops that ship across the country. The number of products available also is somewhat limited. Theitdepot happens to be one of the more prominent mainstream PC component site with a bunch of accessories available for purchase, too.
All products are neatly categorised to a very minute level. For example, under computer hardware one can find everything from cabinets to flash drives to processors. The entire list of products is split into Computer Hardware, Laptops, Apple devices, Cameras, Gaming and so on. There are even complete desktop PCs available for sale. There are a bunch of mobile phones available too, but the list of products aren't updated. The desktops section allows users to choose between a number of presets. For those who want to customize their PCs, there's an option to do that, too.
Techshop - Another resource for mainstream PC component shopping
Another site similar to Theitdepot is Techshop. The categories on the site aren’t as detailed as Theitdepot, but there are a ton of hardware options. The site houses the most popular products across categories. The site design isn’t too great and there is a bit of clutter. Some outdated products also appear in the listings.
Letsbuy - Quickly gaining popularity
Another site that’s getting as popular as Flipkart is Letsbuy. Very competitive pricing is what’s driving people to it. The site looks fresh and very interactive. The homepage, for example, shows large images of of best selling products, newly arrived products and a featured deals. A whole bunch of computer related accessories are also available for sale on the site. Coverage of some categories is pretty impressive, as well. For example, pretty much every important tablet sold in India is available on the site. Some specialized hardware is also available for sale. For example, the cameras section has a ton of tripods and lenses available for sale.
eBay - Probably the best place to find anything!
eBay has been around for as long as we can remember. It was better known as a trading servic, but it’s one of the places with the most number of products for sale. One has to be cautious to find the best dealers and best prices, though. So, if you’re looking for something unique and rare to find in retail stores and other online Indian services, you’ll probably find it on eBay. The option to buy products from international dealers makes it a unique service as compared to the rest.
Online stores in India have simply taken off in a big way and there are a whole bunch of other services worth mentioning. Infibeam, like Flipkart has been around for ages and has a whole bunch of offers across product categories. Their eBook readers, the Pi along with the eBook store make it an interesting service to check out.
Game4u - For Indian gamers, no matter what platform you play on
Game4u for example, is a great online store to purchase games from. There’s even a pre-order section for unreleased titles. Pre-owned games are also available at cheaper rates, for those who don’t want to spend a bomb on brand new titles. Shopping for techies and gamers like us just keeps getting better and better.
Cover image credit: Getty Images
Published Date: Nov 19, 2011 11:12 am | Updated Date: Nov 19, 2011 11:12 am