Report | September 2023
It is widely believed that e-commerce platforms have immense potential to enhance market access for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) worldwide. By opening up new sales channels, e-commerce platforms allow MSMEs that were previously confined to local markets to reach customers in a wider geographical market. Evidence on the engagement of MSMEs with e-commerce platforms in India is thus far limited as this information is generally proprietary and not available to researchers. This report seeks to fill this gap by undertaking a comprehensive primary survey of MSMEs. Combining data from enterprises that are integrated with e-commerce platforms and those that are not, the report seeks to understand how e-commerce can be leveraged to enable MSME growth in India.
A survey of 2,007 MSMEs was carried out between 4 November 2022 and 20 January 2023. Of the total sample, 65 per cent of the firms were micro in size, 19 per cent were small, and the remaining 16 per cent were medium.a At the time of the survey, 1,005 enterprises were already integrated with e-commerce platforms, while the remaining 1,002 were not integrated. MSMEs were selected across six product categories—sports goods (16.7%), toys (15.7%), processed and preserved food products (16.9%), apparel (17%), furniture (17.6%), and handicraft products (16.1%). The survey covered the cities of Ahmedabad, Bhubaneshwar, Delhi, Jaipur, Lucknow, Ludhiana,
Jalandhar, Agra, Meerut, Saharanpur, and Chennai. All the enterprises included in the sample were registered on the Udyam portal, a government facility that provides firms with a permanent registration and basic identification number.