Is Reliance Jio really changing the Internet Face of India? Google Analytics Data of India’s Largest Shopping Community!

Everyone in India has been talking about Reliance Jio (From your local chaiwala to GenNext Prime Minister who also was once a Chaiwala). For those who don't know, Reliance Jio launched FREE SIM Cards for everyone with unlimited Free Data usage until 31st December including unlimited use of Jio’s services. Coupled with Press releases and Marketing around the campaign, Reliance Jio got off to a great start as per Industry reports.

I am one of the co-founder for an Online shopping Community, DesiDime. One of our Mentor from USA asked me in August if Reliance launch would benefit us. I probably did not understand the depth of the question at that time and replied him with a one-liner “yes, to some extent”. The conversation stopped there.

Fast Forward to October 2016, We witnessed increased growth in traffic after August 2016 (number of sessions, visitors, higher time on Site and a lower bounce rate) compared to previous months. We were experiencing much much better results on our Android app. More than 100% Growth Month on month on our Mobile app. When all is going good, you don’t feel like digging much into the data. We attributed success to many factors like Festive season sale, marketing efforts as well as rollout of new Penguin Update. We were happy that our hard work is finally seeing some positive results.

While I don't deny, the above definitely helped us in increased sessions etc.. Today I remembered about the question, our Mentor from USA, had asked us while reading a Jio article about how their speed is deteriorating. Just out of curiosity, I opened up Google Analytics to study more…

July 2016

We had a modest 2.8% traffic coming via Reliance Jio. Around 10% of our users were on Vodafone. Airtel at 2%? Maybe our users also dont like the Airtel girl (just like me) ;)

October 2016

And Wow! People have moved to Reliance Jio!

We definitely had highest sessions/visitors coming from “Reliance Jio”. “not set” have also increased dramatically and I would believe that it might be equally split between various networks. Our users/visitors are deal hunting users and for them “FREE” Sim Card and “FREE” Data was a deal they would not want to miss, I thought!

Ok I get it! People are moving to Reliance Jio for FREE Sim card and FREE Data… But how is that increasing our Time on site/app etc? Could it be due to FREE Data? I need to see data to back up my gut feeling/hypotheses.

The above data which I was looking was for Mobile app. I thought the same must hold true for Mobile Site and yes it was… When I looked at other metrics like Time on Site/Bounce Rate/Pages Per session, it became very clear that Good Internet Infrastructure can definitely change the Internet Face of India.

Much higher time on site on Jio compred to Vodafone/Airtel

Our users using Reliance Jio had Pages per session (first column) and time on site (Second Column) comparable to Broadband users. (Yes, we do get heavy traffic during Office hours! ;) )

It started to sink in for the very first time that 4G Internet and a good Internet Infrastructure might bring in more Indians to Internet which will directly benefit eCommerce companies and Shopping platforms like us. Photo and Video consumption will continue to increase like never before.

Indian Entrepreneurs and Startups need to invest heavily in building Scalable platforms as we will see another 100 Million Internet users being added in no time.

Reliance should also make sure that they fix “slow internet” issues at blazing speed for them to acquire 80 mn 4G users, 16% data market share in 2 years. I think they are rightly poised to take the advantage and would be a shame, if they miss out on the opportunity!

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