Importantly, e-commerce portals have been focusing on small cities including tier-II, III and beyond to drive growth this festive season.
Ahead of the expected big-bang response to the annual festive sales, e-commerce platforms including Amazon, Walmart-owned Flipkart and Myntra are ensuring there are no glitches in the buying experience of customers right from ordering on the website to delivering goods last mile. Hence, companies are strengthening their supply chain or logistics to avoid any breakdown or delay in delivering products to customers. After Flipkart and Amazon, now Walmart’s fashion vertical in India — Myntra on Thursday said that it has expanded its network of kirana stores to more than 15,000 to “manage 70 per cent of the deliveries” across 50 cities for its ‘Big Fashion Days’ from September 29 till October 4 coinciding with Flipkart’s Big Billion Days and Amazon’s Great Indian Festival annual sales.
“We are also delighted to be making our kirana network partners successful and providing them with an opportunity to scale deliveries during the festive season,” Amar Nagaram, Head, Myntra Jabong said in a statement. The company had earlier this tapped into more than 9,000 kirana stores across 50 cities to expedite deliveries, IANS reported. The recent addition of kirana stores is under the Myntra Extended Network for Service Augmentation (MENSA) programme.
Myntra said that there will be 7 lakh styles from more than 3,000 brands on offer in this year’s sale. Myntra has also set up 20 ‘experience centres’ in Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, Gurgaon, Indore and Pune for customers to pick up their deliveries or return them, trial room and alterations of products.
Earlier this month, Flipkart had also announced onboarding close to 27,000 kirana stores based in 700 cities. In order to boost its seller base, which is over 1 lakh, Flipkart had in July this year launched Samarth programme focusing on artisans, weavers, and handicrafts makers and had partnered with five NGOs to support sellers sell on Flipkart’s marketplace platform. Amazon too had expanded the capacity of its fulfilment centres (warehouses) to over 26 million cubic feet of storage space for sellers inventory, PTI reported, along with doubling its delivery partner network with over 1,400 ‘delivery stations’ across 750 cities.
Importantly, e-commerce portals have been focusing on small cities including tier-II, III and beyond to drive growth this festive season. For instance, Snapdeal’s Snap-Diwali sale (September 29 – October 6) expects over 85 per cent of its sales to come from non-metro users even as the company had pivoted its focus in its Snapdeal 2.0 version to become the marketplace for value-conscious users in India’s tier-II and III cities. The company has now partnered NPCI’s RuPay, which have close to 600 million users, to offer a 20 per cent discount to its debit and credit card users in the coming festive season.
“Tier 2 and 3 cities are expected to contribute over 50 per cent to the sale,” Nagaram said. For Flipkart, the new kirana sellers would enable Flipkart to reach out particularly in tier-II and III towns. Amazon had also earlier said that many of its targeted 100 million new customers coming online will be from tier-III or even tier-IV towns.