Price comparison portal Junglee.com has followed in the footsteps of Flipkart and Snapdeal to grab a pie of the country’s evolving digital advertisement space, poised to touch Rs 3,600 crore by March 2015. The Amazon subsidiary, which was launched in India in February 2012, is piloting an advertising platform for sellers listed on its platform, before testing the waters and launching an overdrive.
The service is at present availed by over 20 sellers.
“The numbers are low largely because we have not gone out and marketed it. We will in due course. It will continue to remain in pilot for sometime. Until we are confident that this a service that is truly offering great value to customers, we will continue to put a beta tag on it,” Mahendra Nerurkar, General Manager, Junglee, told FE. The visitors can either be redirected to the advertiser’s homepage or its listings on Junglee, based on the advertiser’s preference, he added.
With Junglee already clocking over 18 million monthly visits, the service is expected to increase visibility of sellers planning exclusive launches and special offers. A lot of sellers, particularly in the fashion and lifestyle categories, have evinced interest in the service, wherein an ad can be placed on Junglee’s homepage or category storefronts.
“We have started giving ad placements to our sellers across the site, mainly on the desktop right now, where sellers, if they have exclusive launches or new sales, can avail this offering to amplify visibility,” Nerurkar said. He, however, declined to comment on the revenues earned through the initiative.
According to industry observers, e-tailers like Flipkart and Snapdeal, having cemented their positions among the top 15 websites in the country in terms of traffic, offer a value proposition to advertisers. Data available from web analytics portal Alexa suggest Flipkart ranks sixth and Snapdeal 12th in terms of traffic, which gives them substantial credibility to foray into the country’s digital advertisement space.
“First, brands advertise where people spend enough time and e-commerce websites fulfil that purpose. Second, some of the e-commerce websites figure among the top 15 internet destinations in the country. People are coming there to shop so it makes all the more sense to advertise there. For the e-commerce companies it makes sense as it is an additional revenue source,” said Sanjay Ramakrishnan, president and country head, Neo@Ogilvy, the global media agency of Ogilvy & Mather.
Ramakrishnan, however, added that brands are yet to divert funds allocated for advertisement on Google or Facebook to buy ad inventory from the e-tailers.
“The spends companies do on Facebook and Google are not changing much. The spend is moving is from very basic display advertising where one puts money in banner ads, but don’t get great return on investment, to platforms where one can build awareness as well as contribute to sale,” he added.
Flipkart is already building a team to push its digital advertisement vertical and is the most aggressive among all e-tailers in this vertical, said a person privy to the development.
Snapdeal, with over 25 million registered users, launched Jump Ahead, an advertising platform, in May this year. The e-tailer has already roped in marquee advertisers like Airtel, Microsoft, L’Oreal and VISA, among others.