Paytm Mall in search of offline sellers, brands for O2O model success

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Paytm Mall recently delisted sellers in an attempt to curtail fraudulent business on its platform.

“Every part of our business is built on trust and we won’t spare bad and fraudulent customers as well. The early figures suggest that we have continued to register consistent growth figures despite the delisting,” Amit Sinha, chief operating officer at Paytm Mall, said.

Now, the etailer is keen on on-boarding offline brands and sellers for its retail platform. The purpose of enrolling more brands and businesses is to fulfil its vision to grow its share of online-to-offline (O2O) shopping. Under the O2O shopping strategy, all orders will be fulfilled by these brands and sellers directly.

Sinha stated, “I believe in the long term this will be about how we helped Indian retailers win against large monolithic online retailers.”

GMV is not the goal

Sinha claimed that the platform is not after gross merchandise value (GMV). The primary aim is to corner 5-10% of gross sales from partnerships with brands and sellers.

He said, “A large number of organised and unorganised retailers have also setup their stores on our platform. We will continue to expand our dominance across mobiles and accessories, electronics, appliances and fashion (which are the etailer’s top-selling categories).”

Omni-channel ecommerce the trend among etailers

Dedicated efforts to introduce an offline presence are common among:

Sreedhar Prasad, partner-ecommerce at KPMG India said, “Ecommerce players are exploring multi-channel as a key strategy . Apart from creating offline presence, other strategies include online-to-offline order fulfilment and bringing hyperlocal businesses on the platform. Trust and speed are the key factors helping in consistent customer experience.”

Paytm Mall O2O model

In over 30 cities, including tier 2 and 3 cities Shillong, Allahabad, Varanasi and Ludhiana, Paytm Mall’s O2O model is already live. This model will be the first for the country’s ecommerce sector.

“O2O strategy through a brand store on the platform transfers the customer directly to the brand, which closes the loop of installation and delivery after the order is placed,” mentioned Prasad.

Adding that the strategy will work best for etailers in urban and tier 2 cities where there is insufficient choice for customers.

“.. the width of the selection provided by the brand is much higher than what sellers on the platform may have on stock. Hyperlocal models, where you bring in businesses from the vicinity on the platform, reduce the cost of return and delivery tremendously and also increases the speed of delivery,” he said.

In other news, Paytm Mall has decided to join the Independence Day sale bandwagon, but it recently let go of nearly 50% of its logistics partners. The etailer has partnerships with local sellers for same-day delivery but, will it be able to cater to online and offline orders when they pick up during the sale period? Or will sellers be burdened?

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