All ecommerce companies are aggressively expanding their services and improving their customers’ experience- but Snapdeal’s approach is slightly different from the rest. It has been on an acquisition spree ever since 2012, snapping up promising internet ecommerce-related companies like Shopo, Esportsbuy and Wishpicker. Recently, Snapdeal has unceremoniously acquired Smartprix.com, which is a price comparison site that was developed by two IIT-Delhi graduates. This website helps users compare different products and choose the best, listing pricing information of the product on different online stores and reviews, rankings and recommendations. Before the acquisition, this site had already tied up with over fifty online stores, to offer extensive shopping options to consumers.
This clearly indicates that Snapdeal wants to emulate the likes of Amazon, which already owns Junglee.com that offers Indian consumers the option to compare various products before making a purchase – which becomes a natural way to immediately showcase and market multiple products at the same time. This ensures that no stone is left unturned to convert the customer’s visit into a successful sale.
All of these measures to improve the customer’s experience and well and good, but there has recently been a spate of fraudulent product delivery instances with Snapdeal. Till date, there is a gaping hole in the trustworthiness of products bought on Snapdeal.
Going upstream or downstream?
Recent reports suggest that Snapdeal hasn’t really gotten anywhere with its product delivery challenges. A customer from Delhi ordered a phone as a New Year’s present for his family member. He was disappointed to discover that the phone he received was second-hand. What irked the customer was that Snapdeal promises to sell only ‘100% genuine and verified’ goods.
“I feel Snapdeal is just cheating customers by tying up with random sellers and not verifying their reputation. Due to this, it’s the customers who either get cheated or end up wasting lot of their time,” says Sachdeva, the distressed customer.
How effectively will Snapdeal’s moves to grow its company work, when customers are gradually losing their trust in Snapdeal? After all, all the complexity of elaborate business plans is meaningless without harbouring the trust and loyalty of customers, who will give the company its profits in the first place.