Alarming! One in five products sold on e-commerce is fake

A citizen engagement platform named LocalCircles conducted a survey in which it was discovered that one out of every five products sold on e-commerce portals is fake. The survey had a size of 30,000 participants. Around 20 % of the participants in the survey confirmed that they had received a fake product in the past six months.

The participants in the survey said that the highest percentage of fake goods came from e-commerce sites like Snapdeal (37%), Flipkart (22%), Paytm Mall (21%) and Amazon (20%). The participants in the survey said that most numbers of fakes fall in the category of fragrances and cosmetics which is 35% followed by sports goods 22% and bags 8%.

Times of Indian sent questions related to the issue to four e-commerce players.  All of them responded by saying that they have stringent guidelines to handle the issue of fakes. They also said that they offer refunds and train their sellers to counter the issue of duplication. Some of the e-commerce players said that they even delist sellers if they are found out to be fake.

Duplication is a major threat for e-commerce players across the world. Of late, big e-commerce players like Amazon and Alibaba have been facing the problem of counterfeiting. The US government had even warned Alibaba to take necessary measures against counterfeit products which were being shipped in the U.S.

The current survey conducted by LocalCircles comes at a time when the festive season is on a full swing. During the festival season all the e-commerce players try every method to increase their sales. This is a perfect time for counterfeiters to sell their products as third-party sellers on different e-commerce platforms.

A spokesperson from All India Online Vendors Association (AIOVA) said that fakes are a bigger problem outside metro cities – in rural areas where people usually do not know on how to differentiate between an original and fake product. Moreover, counterfeits which are being sold online negatively affects the image of the brands and companies. However, the consumer affairs department is taking care of the issue and is ensuring ways for more accountability from e-commerce companies.

Source: Times of India