Jewellery is one of the hottest product categories in online retail today, with a handful of established players and many upcoming ones. Caratlane has been slowly and steadily making a strong footprint in consumers’ minds to be one of the leading names in the segment now.
To capitalize on the popularity, Caratlane has investment plans of Rs 60 crore in the span of the coming 12 months. About Rs 40 crore would be allotted exclusively for marketing and branding, while the remaining Rs 20 crore would be utilized for opening 20 more offline stores across various cities. Currently, the jewellery retailer operates 10 stores in various cities of around 700 sq.ft average size.
“Over the next 12 months we are going to open 20 more stores, taking the total store count to 30,” said Mithun Sancheti, co-founder and chief executive.
Caratlane is one of the few e-retailers offering the Try and Buy option in India. A small collection of its collection (about 500 products) is available to be tried at home. Customers can choose 5 pieces and try them at home at their convenience (prior appointment has to be taken for this). This has been extended to about 22 cities.
Sancheti says this has been working well for the online retailers. It has helped increase conversion rates to 70% and a 40% increase in the average selling price.
Riding the m-commerce wave, Caratlane has launched its mobile app with special features like facial recognition technology and 3D imaging to facilitate a virtual try-on experience.
Customers can order upto 5 items. Silver samples of the same will be sent to them for trial. Once they confirm after trying, the products will be delivered in a week.
Mithun Sacheti, Co-founder and CEO of CaratLane says, “Efficiency is a big problem in the jewellery industry. The rental of a brick-and-mortar store is only 2-3%, but there is huge potential of savings in stocks and working capital. With a 10,000 sqft store, the inventory is huge. The bigger the store, the lower the inventory rotation and the lesser its efficiency. We pass on those savings to our customers.”
“In case of jewellery, people pay significant amounts for relatively small objects. It’s time we put the trust back in our customers. They shouldn’t feel threatened to walk into a jewellery store. That’s exactly why we have open displays”, he adds.
Considering the convenience of browsing and shopping through mobiles, Caratlane expects the mobile app would contribute to 30-40% of their sales in the coming months.
After dwindling with her family business, into travel and hospitality, for more than 3 years, Pooja Vishant found her true love in writing. Happy-go-lucky and cheerful, she loves pink; so pink is the way to go if you want to get into her good books. The Associate Editor keeps track of even a leaf that has moved in the ecommerce world!