Internet search giant Google has launched India’s own version of ‘Cyber Monday‘, or ‘Black Friday’ where products will be sold online within a day to encourage e-commerce sales in the country, the day is scheduled on 12th December 2012 as Great online shopping festival. Apart from Google, Citibank has also planned to offer discounts within a time frame of 24 hours on 5th December – making it the country’s first-ever ‘Cyber Sunday’ event.

First coined in 2005 as a marketing term by online retailers for the Monday coming after ‘Black Friday’, which itself is the name for Friday after Thanksgiving in the US, the ‘Cyber Monday’ has become a phenomenon over the years.

Google India has partnered with around 50 sites and is offering deals for the people. Participating sites include companies like Flipkart, JewelsKart.com, Utsav Fashion, Snapdeal, Goibibo, BagsKart.com, BigRock, Gitanjali, Tradus.com, Naaptol, WatchKart.com, Rightshopping.in, Zansaar, Timtara, Zivame, Jabong, Firstcry, Fabfurnish, Inkfruit, Makemytrip, Hushbabies, Zovi, etc.  Customers can buy deals which are categorized into apparel, accessories, travel, home & kitchen, electronics, etc. Google with its basic objective to promote eCommerce sites has also included a tips page to educate the users with basic online shopping queries.

Whereas different from the Google’s deal idea, Citibank is offering discount up-to 60% limited to its own credit and debit cardholders, these discounts will be applicable for various product categories on 17 well-known internet shopping platforms like indiatimes.Com, ebay.in, snapdeal.com, indiaplaza.com, zoomin.com, yebhi.com, zovi.com, excluzen.com, highstreet labels.com, goodlife.com, pepperfry.com and myntra.com, etc.

Great Online Shopping FestivalCitibank said it aims to promote e-commerce by bringing together leading ecommerce players on one platform on the day through this event, named ‘OMG! Sale’. Citibank is yet to decide whether it would follow the annual ‘Cyber Monday’ model when it comes to the frequency of the event, as the dynamics of the Indian market might require it to be conducted at least twice a year.

Although the December 5 event would be limited to its own credit and debit cardholders, Citibank India Chief Marketing Officer Sanjeev Kapur told PTI that other players might also replicate the model and Citi is also open to joining hands with other like-minded partners as well in this initiative.

“There would certainly be other players, either banks or other institutions who may want to replicate it. We will not be surprised if other players replicate the concept either wholly or in part.

“If we get like-minded professionals and entrepreneurs who are agnostic to the market and do not have any specific agenda other than growing the online b2c commerce market and would like to partner with us to strengthen this platform for our customers, we will certainly consider it with an open mind.

“Consequently, if a media partner or a large group approaches us to make this proposition even bigger, we would be very happy to evaluate it, as our intention is to grow this market and proliferate the online commerce value proposition within the industry and consumers alike,” he said.

What do you think? Is the Indian E-Commerce scene finally maturing? Will such campaigns be able to change the Indian mentality and get them to buy online?

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