Open Network For Digital Commerce (ONDC) : know all about it

The government is officially entering the Indian food delivery space which is at present dominated by two entities namely Zomato and Swiggy. This has led to a price battle between these platforms .The Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), is an organization backed by the government and has the potential to be a major disruptor for players like Zomato and Swiggy. The platform allows restaurants to sell food to consumers through buyer apps, The Economic Times reported.

Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) is an initiative aiming at promoting open networks for all aspects of exchange of goods and services over digital or electronic networks. ONDC is to be based on open-sourced methodology, using open specifications and open network protocols independent of any specific platform.

The foundations of ONDC are to be open protocols for all aspects in the entire chain of activities in exchange of goods and services, similar to hypertext transfer protocol for information exchange over internet, simple mail transfer protocol for exchange of emails and unified payments interface for payments.

Now, the latest news is that giants like Flipkart, Reliance Retail and Amazon are planning to join this ambitious e-commerce network called Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC). A report by Economic Times claims that a pilot program is already underway to include kiranas and small and medium businesses in Bengaluru and 4 other cities.

What is ONDC?

ONDC is an open e-commerce protocol introduced by the Department of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) of the Ministry of Commerce. The network enables buyers and sellers to interact with each other without the need of a third-party application. Sellers through ONDC can become visible to customers across the country who are using any of the partner applications.

How is it beneficial for customers?

ONDC is expected to make e-Commerce more inclusive and accessible for consumers. Consumers can potentially discover any seller, product or service by using any compatible application or platform, thus increasing freedom of choice for consumers. It will enable the consumers to match demand with the nearest available supply. This would also give consumers the liberty to choose their preferred local businesses. Thus, ONDC would standardize operations, promote inclusion of local suppliers, drive efficiencies in logistics and lead to enhancement of value for consumers.

The idea of ONDC is simple, although its implementation looks complex. Essentially, the network breaks down the entire order-delivery operation into three parts: buyer-side apps that are consumer facing, seller-side apps that enlist merchants and business, and logistics providers, who make the last-mile delivery to the end consumer.

List of ONDC Buyer Apps :

• Paytm
• Meesho
• Magicpin
• Mystore
• Craftsvilla
• Pincode
• Spicesmart Shop

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