Ecomm Breathes Life into Obit Star­tups

Cos join ecom­merce band­wagon, tar­get mul­ti­lin­gual obit­u­ar­ies, so­cial net­works

The Economic Times - - Disruption: - Vishal.Dutta@ times­group.com

Ahmed­abad: Ra­jkot-based on­line obit­u­ar­ies startup Shrad­han­jali is ex­pand­ing its pres­ence by en­ter­ing into mul­ti­lin­gual obit­u­ar­ies, adding so­cial net­work­ing sites like Face­book and Twit­ter and soon join­ing the obits ecom­merce mar­ket. Oth­ers such as Trib­utes.in, a ven­ture from In­diaon­line, which re­cently en­tered into the on­line obits space, is also plan­ning to be a one-stop plat­form.

“We are adding re­gional lan­guages to the on­line obits that will al­low peo­ple to share their con­do­lences through so­cial net­work­ing sites like Face­book and Twit­ter,” said Vivek Vyas, co­founder of Shrad­han­jali.com, which was once ap­plauded by Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi (then CM of Gu­jarat).

Es­tab­lished in 2013, Shrad­han­jali.com ini­tially started in English and now al­lows peo­ple to pen down obits, bi­og­ra­phy and con­do­lences for loved ones in ten dif­fer­ent In­dian lan­guages. It al­lows Face­book shar­ing and would soon add Twit­ter shar­ing to the plat­form.

Ac­cord­ing to Vyas, the ini­tial rev­enue gen­er­a­tion was on a sub­scrip­tion ba­sis and he now wants to add ecom­merce to it. “The obits plat­form would have ecom­merce in­built that will al­low users to or­der flow­ers, condolence cards, sweets and other obit-re­lated prod­ucts that can be de­liv­ered to the griev­ing fam­ily mem­bers,” said Vyas. Vyas said that with an in­creas­ing in­ter­net pen­e­tra­tion, peo­ple are tak­ing the de­ci­sion in favour of on­line obits over tra­di­tional news­pa­per obits. As per a mar­ket sur­vey by Trib­utes.in, the news­pa­per obit­u­ary and re­mem­brance ad­ver­tise­ment mar­ket size is es­ti­mated at more than .₹ 350 crore an­nu­ally from the top 100 cities in In­dia. Out of this, the top 20 cities of In­dia ac­counted for more than 60% of the mar­ket share.

Started in 2015, Trib­utes.in is ex­plor­ing the US mar­ket, which is gain­ing mo­men­tum, and will soon launch a global web­site — trib­utes.co in the next six months. It too added re­gional lan­guages to its obits por­tal.

Trib­utes.in is also look­ing into ven­tur­ing into obits ecom­merce. “Be­fore we start obits ecom­merce, we have to check the sen­si­bil­ity and what and how peo­ple would ac­cept it,” said Rahul Jalan, di­rec­tor, Trib­utes.in. Ac­cord­ing to him, lots of prod­ucts can be spun off for obit­u­ary or condolence pur­poses through obits ecom­merce.

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