Handloom weaving is one of the most enduring traditions of India’s artistic heritage. And the future of handloom products in India continues to be bright with growing demand for sustainable and ethically-made products. The unique beauty and craftsmanship of handloom and handmade products are increasingly being appreciated both within and outside the country, leading to the sector bring a vital part of India's economic engine. What’s more, its growth is essential for preserving traditional art forms and techniques that might otherwise be lost.
The role of e-commerce in promoting handmade products
Amazon’s Karigar program was introduced in 2017 with a focus on promoting handmade and handloom products to benefit artisans and their families. The big idea was to create a platform for artisans and weavers to showcase their products to a larger audience and reach customers who might not otherwise have access to their work.
Since launch, Amazon Karigar has onboarded over 5,000 master weavers, artisans, and co-operatives making handlooms and handicrafts to sell online. Today, Karigar has made a difference in the lives of 10 lakh+ artisans across 20 states and union territories, apart from partnering with over 30 government emporiums and bodies to showcase over 270 unique crafts.
So, what do we do?
A characteristic of this sector is that most artisans are not financially or technically advanced, and often lack the knowledge required to launch and scale on Amazon.in. Through the Karigar program, Amazon is able to help them in various ways:
- We work to provide easy access to the marketplace for all new sellers
- We invest resources in launching new artisanal sellers, handholding them through onboarding, training them, and offering referral fee relaxations
- We provide growth inputs and drive visibility to their selection through a dedicated Karigar store
- We amplify seller stories by leveraging PR and social media to communicate the uniqueness of their products
- Through simple videos, customers are able to see where their garments are getting weaved and how every piece is painstakingly put together.
Crafts in focus
- Dhokra ArtSeller: Biswa Bangla
- Pochampally ikatSeller: Chandana Ikkat
- Sambalpuri textilesSeller: Nuapatna or Odisha Handloom
- Block printing
- Blue potterySeller: Shiv Kripa pottery
- Channapatna toysSeller: Channapatna toys
India is considered to be among the world’s best handicraft hubs and this will continue into the future. The handloom sector has high potential to grow further when matched with modern needs and demands from customers across the world, and e-commerce is playing a significant role in promoting and supporting this sector.