What is your take on current fashion and lifestyle market in India?? How do you see this market growing over next five years?
The Indian market has replaced China as a more promising retail environment. Indian consumers are informed and updated on international trends, giving them more scope and styles to experiment with. The demand for trendy clothing has increased two folds. According to reports, by 2025, India’s economic growth is expected to increase consumer spending to US$4 trillion which gives us an ideal market to exist in, grow and compete in.
What was the rationale behind choosing online place as your distribution channel, which is extremely competitive now? Also shed light on your journey? How did Zapyle.com start? Have you raised any sort of funds so far?
The Indian online retail industry is expected to grow more than three times its existing results purely because of millenials. This is primarily attributed to them being so digital savvy. With millenials being our target audience, we couldn’t think of a more apt market place for them than an online place. A combination of Zap and Style, Zapyle was created to solve problems of ‘having nothing to wear’ by providing a personalized experience. We saw a gap between the demand for luxury and a supply in India, which is why we entered the Pre-owned luxury market. We saw tremendous success in this segment but soon realized that there was a gap between preowned and ready-to-wear- the idea of filling that gap was extremely appealing.
Indian women are extremely aspirational when it comes to fashion. They also want styles options that are not only trendy, chic and are the fit them well, but also affordable and authentic, which is why we entered this new segment with brands that are not easily available in India like Evah London, Chanira, Zibi London, etc. This is also why we decided to launch our private label, ISU, that gives them an array of products that get them through the day, whether its going to work or a special occasion.
According to you, what are the major challenges of fashion retailing in India?
Even though there is a huge market in India for retail, gauging what Indian customers want is difficult. Given that India is an extremely diverse country, we have to keep in mind that people from different parts of India have different approaches to the way they buy fashion. Having a good universal collection that matches needs, lifestyles and keeps up with different demands is a challenge that we have faced.
Kindly shed light on your pricing strategy? Also what is your strategy to compete with steep discounting offered on marketplaces?
Since the beginning, we have focused on design, material and the cut as well as the feel of the fabric. Out pricing strategy is completely value-driven. Our collections consist of products that are made of 100% cotton, which is valued at Rs. 1500 each. Customers perceive the value of our products to attributes such as trends, finish, fabric etc.
How many brands and private labels are present on Zaplye.com?
As of now, we have about 45 brands listed on our platform.
Kindly shed light on your best performing categories? Also what would be the expand the existing and adding new categories?
Over time, we have noticed that dresses, are our constant best sellers. Being so versatile in nature and the ability to style them differently, dresses can be worn for several occasions – be it for work, casual or a specific occasion. It’s all in pairing it with appropriate accessories and footwear. The dresses that we offer on our platform can be re-styled from an AM to PM look effortlessly. This is ultimately one of our primary objectives.
We want to provide our users with a complete look, a one-stop destination for all their shopping needs. We will be venturing into more categories to solve these needs and to save time for our users.
Any plans to open your exclusive offline store?
As the online market is treating us well we have no plans of opening an offline store. Since the target audiences are mostly Millenials who are reported to be the larger chunk of the online buyers, we would like to focus on this for the moment.
At last, kindly highlight your growth plans?
Zapyle aims to the be one-stop destination for trendy fashion solutions. We plan to grow our offering to providing more styles as well as shaping lifestyles. We are adding more categories such as footwear and more apparel options, and giving women a platform that provides them with 360 degree wardrobe solutions