If you thought in the Indian ecommerce industry, only online marketplaces have to deal with seller fraud, then you are wrong. Be it taxi aggregators or food-ordering service providers, every online company’s reputation is taking a hit due to infiltration of fraud vendors. And ecommerce companies are trying their best to control it.
Vendors abusing every loophole in technology-based services
“We have seen a few cases where merchants bought their own products and applied a coupon for discounts. This way they made a profit and did not actually sell the product. This was caught out by the system based on the seller address and shipping address being in the same locality”, said Sanjay Sethi, CEO of Shopclues.
Ola, Uber, Foodpanda’s tryst with phony vendors
On condition of anonymity, a driver revealed this trick, “If the company finds out about one such recurring incident, some ask other driver friends to book trips for them and they do it vice-versa for them.”
Restaurants that have partnered with companies like Foodpanda are also indulging in such malpractices by hiking the food prices, fake-ordering & cancelling orders to get cashbacks and meet their order-taking targets.
While talking about how they deal with such frauds, Foodpanda’s CEO Saurabh Kochhar stated, “Our contract strictly mentions that the restaurants cannot offer higher prices on Foodpanda versus other platforms. If we find an issue/flaw, we have a structured compliance process in place and it may also result in termination of services.”
Ecommerce companies have to remain one step ahead to deal with smart online crooks
“Merchants are assessed on several risk parameters and finally allowed to be on-boarded based on the risk score. Parameters include type of business, revenue, legal documentation, etc,” disclosed Saurabh Vashishtha, VP- Business at Paytm.
Vishal Chadha, Senior VP-Market Development also shared Snapdeal’s strategy to sieve sellers, “We follow a standard procedure for checks and balances on the various products sold on Snapdeal. These include a physical verification of the products and submission of documents like brand authorization.”
Such bogus sellers are still less if you consider the overall ecommerce industry. In the online retail market, 2% of the sellers are fraud and in the online cabs and food-ordering industry it is higher at 8%. For now the number is small, but looking at the pace at which ecommerce in India is growing, if proper checks and rules are not implemented, such cheating cases will rise too.