Flipkart, India’s homegrown e-commerce marketplace, today announced the introduction of Bengali and Odia language support on its platform as part of its vision to make online commerce more inclusive and accessible for Indian language users. With the addition of two of the country’s most widely spoken languages on the Flipkart app, customers across the country will now be able to use the platform in their preferred native language.
From display banners to category pages and product descriptions, Flipkart offers an end-to-end Bengali and Odia experience to millions of customers by utilizing a judicious mix of translation and transliteration of over 5.4 million words on the platform to bring a natural language experience. This includes transliteration of terms such as EMI, delivery, filter, cart and OTP instead of simply translating them to enable better resonance with the native experience, helping users get acquainted with e-commerce terminologies.
The introduction of Bengali and Odia is in line with Flipkart’s aim of leveraging locally developed language solutions to help bring the next 200 million customers on board with e-commerce. With the two new languages, the Flipkart app is now available in 7 Indian languages, including Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Marathi, developed in a span of over 1.5 years.
According to industry reports*, Indian language internet users are expected to account for nearly 75% of India’s internet user base by 2021. This growing base of language users, primarily from smaller towns, makes it extremely important to enable e-commerce in regional languages to offer a more personalised experience. This will also enable millions of consumers across the country to have an engaging online shopping experience in their native languages, besides creating a bigger market for Indian MSMEs/sellers across the country.
Rajneesh Kumar, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer at Flipkart said, “As a homegrown e-commerce marketplace, Flipkart is committed to bringing the next 200 million customers online by bringing state-of-the-art technological solutions to democratize e-commerce in India. In this endeavour, Flipkart has expanded its vernacular universe to seven Indian languages which are spoken by nearly 75% of our population to ensure a seamless e-commerce experience for new-to-internet users. With Bengali and Odia, we are further doubling down on our efforts and making deep investments in technology to bring a natural language experience to millions of our customers across the country. In addition to this, we are also creating a shared value for millions of sellers, MSMEs, artisans and ecosystem partners across the country through use of technology while democratising commerce in India.”
The ever-expanding base of Flipkart’s vernacular universe is witnessing an impressive adoption across the country. According to usage trends, over 95% of the customers who opted for a vernacular language experience continued with the same, showcasing customers’ acceptance of these capabilities.