How a housewife, a businessman and a first-time entrepreneur cracked Digital India

Updated: September 3, 2015 3:30:31 PM

A story of how three inspired Indian sellers, with different backgrounds, goals and strengths, used e-commerce to make a name for themselves, by breaking all geographical boundaries and societal norms to crack Digital India.

How can we judge how fast India is really moving?

Look at its people.

One part of Incredible India that has exploded in the last few years is Digital India. If you’re reading this article, rest assured, you’re a part of it.

There has been a seemingly seamless transition to technology that has seeped into the smallest and most obscure parts of every city and village alike. Whether it’s the rickshawalla who stops on the side of the road to take a call or your favourite local restaurant who ends every meal with, “Give us a great review online!” rather than a plate of sauf and sugar.

One such sector that has grown beyond all expectation is e-commerce. Sellers from one end of India are being able to reach buyers on the other end- which is an extremely long distance to cover. All they thought they were doing was finding an innovative solution to a small, local problem or a valuable addition to the lives of their fellow city folk, never imagining that one day it would solve a national issue.

So who are these hard working, goal reaching Indians we should all be super proud of?

Meet Gaurav Goel. Gaurav was an electronics retailer from Kolkata who ran 7 stores and had a sizeable distribution network. But, he felt he didn’t have enough recognition in the market. Looking to expand his business and get some well-deserved fame, he turned to e-commerce. Despite no prior knowledge of the e-commerce space, Gaurav was able to change his business forever. Here’s how he did it.

At the end of the first day of trading online, his inventory had sold out. The next day, orders had trebled and business was moving at the rate of 600-700 boxes a day. However, the lack of a warehouse was taking its toll and limiting growth, so Gaurav decided to turn to Snapdeal Plus. The Snapdeal warehouse would hold all the material, take orders, pack and dispatch items and even create invoices- leaving Gaurav to focus on manufacture, and eventually, product diversification. All of this created a hassle free environment where the business could grow seamlessly. There’s been nothing stopping him since.

E-commerce also helps individuals transform their creative talents into flourishing businesses. One such businesswoman was Aarti Goel, a home furnishings designer from New Delhi. Aarti ran a small in-house boutique as a hobby, creating bed covers and bed sheets that she had designed.

For Aarti, the routine of housework wasn’t enough; she craved to do something more with her time and gain recognition for her talents. That’s when she decided to enter the e-commerce space and sell home furnishings on Snapdeal.

Despite her success, her decision wasn’t without opposition from naysayers, but Aarti had forgotten how to settle. She went on a hunt for the perfect fabrics for her products in Chandni Chowk, one of Delhi’s densest markets, armed with hope and drive.

She initially designed a set of 5 balloon coloured cushions which received a phenomenal response online. From that point on, there was no looking back.

Moving to the e-commerce space allowed Aarti to reach markets that a store in Chandni Chowk could simply never have navigated. Soon, Aarti had a multi floor store, one for production, one for management and one for packaging.

Despite the unimaginable income, though, for Aarti the greatest reward was the feeling of achievement that came from creating something with her own hands. In addition to being a home maker, today Aarti runs a thriving business. ‘Now every body knows me for what I am,’ she says, beaming.

Yet another life changing impact e-commerce has stems from its ability to uncover talents from the most hidden corners of our diverse nation. Balaji Rajendran hailed from a family of saree manufacturers from Tiruppur, Tamil Nadu. Balaji worked as a successful IT professional for a long time but dreamt of starting his own saree business that was operated across India.

Seeing the booming e-commerce industry, Balaji decided to approach Snapdeal. They helped him create a catalogue of his sarees and even helped with marketing his products.

Balaji’s first online sale came from New Delhi and his confidence soared; how often does an indigenous seller from Tamil Nadu manage to make a sale on the other end of the country?

Balaji’s buzzing business has today expanded to include kids wear and t-shirts. Within just 1.5 years of entering the e-commerce arena, Balaji has become more successful than he ever was at his desk job. He now wants to expand the business tenfold, and with the rapid growth that the Indian digital selling space is experiencing, it’s bound to happen soon.

These are just three of the countless success stories that are responsible for Digital India’s ever growing success. Regardless of geographical location, language barriers or even societal norms, the online selling arena is one that welcomes everyone, and if you find the help you need, like these three sellers did, there will be nothing stopping you.

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