India Fashion Ecommerce

Emergence of Fashion Ecommerce in India


The fashion industry in India has witnessed a massive transformation in the last decade, largely driven by the rise of ecommerce. India’s fashion retail market is now one of the biggest and fastest growing segments in the country, estimated at over $100 billion currently. A key factor behind this rapid growth has been the emergence of online fashion stores that have disrupted the traditional brick-and-mortar retail model and made fashion accessible to every nook and corner of the country.

Early Startups Paving the Way

In the early 2010s, as India Fashion Ecommerce started embracing online shopping in a big way, a few daring entrepreneurs sensed an opportunity in the largely untapped fashion ecommerce space. Pioneering startups like Myntra, Jabong and Koovs saw the potential of bringing the latest designer and street style trends directly to the doors of fashion-conscious Indians across cities and towns. They started small by selling only a limited selection of apparel and accessories but were quick to scale up as online shoppers warmed up to the convenience of browsing and buying fashion items from the comfort of their homes. Success Stories Like Flipkart Fashion Early startup successes like Myntra’s acquisition by Flipkart in 2014 for $330 million indicated the immense potential of fashion ecommerce in India. This encouraged larger marketplace platforms like Flipkart and Amazon to enter the space with dedicated fashion verticals – Flipkart Fashion and Amazon Fashion, respectively. With their established logistics and payment infrastructure as well as massive customer base across the country, these platforms were able to quickly dominate the online fashion space.

Rise of D2C Brands

The last few years have seen the emergence of a new breed of direct-to-consumer (D2C) fashion brands that leverage the online medium to build their brands from scratch through social media marketing, affordable pricing and quick delivery. From casual apparel and sportswear brands like Bewakoof, Bare Body People to fashionable footwear labels like Metro Shoes and Ajio’s in-house brands – these D2C brands are fast becoming popular among Gen Z and millennials who are increasingly conscious about brand identity and story. Their success shows that online channels allow nimble Indian brands to scale up and compete even against deep-pocketed global labels.

Expansion of Categories

Initially starting with just apparel and accessories, online fashion portals today sell a wide variety of categories from footwear, cosmetics to jewellery to cater to every need of modern shoppers. Recognizing the category potential, leading players have launched dedicated verticals and partnered with niche brands. For instance, platforms like Ajio focus entirely on footwear whereas LimeRoad has built a strong portfolio in the jewellery category by collaborating with indie designers. This has helped expand the assortment available to consumers and boosted the overall growth of niche categories in the country.

Trends Transforming Fashion Ecommerce

Personalization and Customization

Bolstered by the widespread use of AI and virtual fitting tools, online fashion is increasingly pivoting towards personalized experiences. Companies are leveraging user data to offer tailored product recommendations and customized design options. Pioneering this trend are labels like Trell which let shoppers design and co-create apparel of their choice. Similarly, platforms now allow choosing fabric swatches, embroidery styles and monogramming services to truly reflect individual tastes. Such unique value propositions are winning over modern customers who want clothes that are an extension of their personality.

Live Commerce Gaining Momentum

Taking inspiration from China, live commerce features are the latest trend being adopted worldwide to inject interactivity in online shopping. In India, companies are innovating use cases through live video shopping, interactive try-ons, flash sales and celebrity hosted launches to recreate the camaraderie of retail therapy. Tried and tested formats like shoppable videos on Instagram are mainstreaming live commerce by bringing stores directly onto users’ small screens. This hyper-personal engagement will play a key role in the future of fashion commerce by blurring lines between online and offline.

Sustainability Focus Becoming Priority

With rising environment consciousness, even online retailers can no longer ignore their impact and responsibility towards promoting sustainability. From transparently communicating fabric/production details to incentivizing eco-friendly purchases through rewards – companies are taking varied measures to appeal to socially aware millennial shoppers. Homegrown labels especially are proactively opting for organic cottons, natural dyes, recycled packaging materials and community sourcing models. While still nascent, such ethical initiatives will help Indian fashion ecommerce build long-term loyalty through values-based branding.

The Road Ahead

Having witnessed unprecedented growth over the past decade, India’s online fashion industry is projected to reach $60 billion in sales by 2025 according to research. While challenges around delivery logistics, returns and fake reviews persist – the ecosystem will continue to mature by addressing such bottlenecks through continuous tech innovations and self-regulations. Emerging trends around live, video and resale commerce indicate consumers are looking for new engaging experiences beyond regular browsing and transactions. Fashion platforms need to creatively integrate such interactive features and community elements into their offerings to stay relevant. With rising disposable incomes and tech-savvy habits of Gen Z, India presents massive untapped potential for both global mega brands as well as homegrown labels. By prioritizing convenience, personalization and sustainability – online fashion commerce is poised to lead India’s retail consumption boom for decades to come.


  1. Source: CoherentMI, Public sources, Desk research
  2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it