ShopClues started as online players. What is the rationale behind offline foray?
We are about serving the “Bharat” consumer. That is the lower income middle class buyer we. It is not about online or offline, it is about reaching our target customer, it is about building a brand, it about serving the customer in an efficient way. O2O and omni-channel is how you reach the customer today and our offline stores are part of this overarching vision.
With the launch of the offline store our focus is to enhance the shopping experience for expanding our customer base. The ever-increasing consumer base in non-metro cities demands a visibility of their favourite online brands in a brick -and-mortar structure as well to get a touch and feel of the products. At ShopClues, we are looking at assisted e-commerce in a big way. With an aim to push the company’s offline to online strategy, ShopClues branded store will cater to the value-conscious consumer who is seeking products in the unstructured categories of fashion, accessories as well as entry-level phones.
The store also features exclusive labels from ShopClues like the Homeberry, MEIA, Baton and Digimate which has a tremendous movement online and thus it is a great way for our customers to experience the products in person.
What was the rationale behind opting Lucknow for the maiden store? Going forward what are the plans to expand the offline network?
ShopClues opened its first retail store in the city of Nawabs – Lucknow as it has a large consumer base for us in the fashion, lifestyle and wired categories. The store features our exclusive labels along with products across different categories. ShopClues will expand and provide a multiple retail platform to its customers for a greater shopping experience in near future. To facilitate this new move, ShopClues has already tied up with entities such as Aditya Birla Payments Bank, Emart and iTiger (part of Sahaj Group) to access their retailer network.
How many product categories are introduced in first store? Going forward how are you looking to expand the product categories?
The store has been launched in-line with our offline to online strategy which showcases products from fashion, accessories and entry-level phones, refurbished branded mobile phones, our private labels in home, fashion & electronics. Offline retail stores are part of the larger strategy to expand our distribution network and enable our domestic manufacturers and Cross Border traders a larger reach. We will expand via 1st party stores and our franchise network to reach more customer in smaller towns.
Would you be looking at Franchise model as far as offline expansion in concerned?
Yes, will leverage the franchise model to expand our offline presence.
At last, kindly highlight your growth plans?
For the next couple of years our B2C business will continue to grow about 50% YoY will we will be invest heavily into our cross border, private labels. We will be leveraging our 50 million buyer base to expand our social commerce and consumer affiliate programs. B2b retail will also be a growth driver for the next couple of years. Our platform services business is also seeing 100% YoY growth we will continue to build out our platform as a white-labelled service to enable domestic & international small and large enterprises to become O2O.