Paytm Mall read­ies for first fes­tive sales war

Business Standard - - COM­PA­NIES - KARAN CHOUD­HURY

To dif­fer­en­ti­ate from the com­pe­ti­tion, Paytm Mall is mak­ing its sales live both on­line and off­line in its com­ing ‘mega sale’ dur­ing the fes­tive sea­son

In a first, it would be giv­ing the same dis­counts and deals to its cus­tomers in part­ner stores, which it would name on its por­tal. Tak­ing its on­line to off­line (O2O) strat­egy to the next level, the com­pany has de­cided to make its sales rel­e­vant for the vast num­ber of off­line mer­chants.

“For the fes­tive sea­son, we have planned a num­ber of spe­cial of­fers for our shop­keep­ers and re­tail­ers. Brands hate it when on­line of­fers dis­counts and off­line stores suf­fer. We want to make the ex­pe­ri­ence same, on­line and off­line, as our cus­tomer and sell­ers are in both worlds,” said Amit Sinha, chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer.

At the Paytm Mall app, he said, cus­tomers would have the op­tion of or­der­ing on­line or tak­ing the item from the near­est part­ner store.

The com­pany has started with an In­de­pen­dence Day sale but has kept un­der wraps the time­line for the of­fli­neon­line com­bined sale.

This is the first ma­jor sea­son for Paytm Mall af­ter it was formed, be­ing hived off from the mo­bile wal­let this Fe­bru­ary. “Paytm Mall will of­fer a unique com­bi­na­tion of the Mall and Bazaar con­cepts to In­dian con­sumers. Only trusted sell­ers pass­ing strict qual­ity guide­lines and qual­i­fi­ca­tion cri­te­ria will be al­lowed on the ‘Mall’. All prod­ucts listed on it will also go through Paytm­cer­ti­fied ware­house and ship­ping chan­nels, en­sur­ing guar­an­teed con­sumer trust,” the com­pany had said at the time.

The Bazaar is the un­struc­tured shop­ping chan­nel on Paytm and will also be fea­tured on a new app. It will aim at pro­vid­ing con­sumers a wide do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional as­sort­ment. The com­pany has at least 17 ful­fil­ment cen­tres across In­dia.

Par­ent com­pany One97 Com­mu­ni­ca­tions is backed by Alibaba, the Chi­nese e-com­merce gi­ant which has one of the largest col­lec­tion of sell­ers in the world. Sinha says the com­pany is tak­ing a dif­fer­ent strat­egy and would be re­ly­ing mostly on lo­cal re­tail­ers and sell­ers.

On be­ing asked if the com­pany would be bring­ing sell­ers from South­east Asia and af­fil­i­ate mar­ket­places of Alibaba such as Lazada, he said they were tech­nol­ogy part­ners to lo­cal shop­keep­ers. “When you buy a prod­uct on our plat­form, you are ac­tu­ally shop­ping from a neigh­bour­hood store and en­rich­ing the lo­cal re­tail eco-sys­tem,” he said.

The com­pany has been work­ing on re­fin­ing its e-com­merce plat­form. Among the first or­der of busi­ness af­ter tak­ing over, Sinha has delisted 85,000 sell­ers and dras­ti­cally re­duced the num­ber of lo­gis­ti­cal part­ners.

In ad­di­tion to the re­vised mea­sures, Paytm Mall will en­able brands and shop­keep­ers to set the re­turn, ex­change and re­fund poli­cies for their prod­ucts be­ing sold on the plat­form. The plat­form will of­fer com­plete lo­gis­tic sup­port to brands and shops through its net­work of lo­gis­tic part­ners.

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