Kishor Biyani led Big Bazaar is all geared up to move towards omni-channel retailing with the launch of its Big Bazaar app, which is likely to go live next month.
This step will combat the rapid adoption of ecommerce in India;try and beat online retailers at a price-cutting strategy that brick-and-mortar stores have been struggling to come to terms with.
Expressing views on the matter, Kishor Biyani founder Future Group told media:"We are launching a price-match offer where if you shop from us and anybody else is selling cheaper than us at that moment, we will automatically give credits in your account anything online or offline," Apart from this, Biyani's Future Group is also seeking to harness its presence on the ground to complement its push to counter online retail."
Over the past two years, Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal and others have been offering lower prices to lure consumers, hurting organised retailers, already feeling the squeeze of an economic slowdown. Flush with funding, ecommerce firms have the kind of cash needed to persist with this strategy. E-tailers may have shelled out discounts worth hundreds of millions of dollars around Diwali alone, according to the trade.
Amazon has just launched a Summer Sale, offering "deals that'll make you dance".
Biyani , who's just struck a deal to take over Bharti Retail, said he doesn't worry too much about ecommerce, because it won't be able to match real-world stores in terms of overall volume.
Big Bazaar, a hypermarket that sell brands across categories from smartphones, electronics and furniture to grocery and general merchandise, is testing the app that will let consumers compare prices offered by online and other offline retailers. Customers will have a week from the date of purchase to make the price comparison.
Expressing views at the Indian Retail congress 2015, Vivek Biyani Director, Future Group & Director, Big Bazaar Direct said: 'I think that consumers will shop through multiple channels every time, like physical stores for some product categories and online for some other categories. Besides, there will be times when they will shop through mobile or any other digital ecosystem, so the consumer's shopping pattern is unpredictable.
Apart from this, Future will soon conduct an omni-channel pilot programme in which its Big Bazaar and Food Bazaar stores will deliver goods to customers in Mumbai an hour after they place their orders.
Elaborating on the matter, Vivek Biyani added: 'The consumers of tomorrow will shop through different channels. We also believe that there are certain categories which are more familiar with the digital channel and some categories that will be more friendly to the physical channels, we are a product company and wherever the consumer is we have to reach him through that channel.'
The price comparison app is currently being tested by Future Group employees at the Food Bazaar store in Vikhroli in Mumbai.
Besides,the app will be available for public use in Mumbai in the coming weeks, will go nationwide in the coming months. Future's acquisition of Bharti Retail in an all stock deal valued the latter at Rs 500 crore.