During this pandemic Covid-19 the grocery category as well as small grocers – mom-and-pop stores are considered as the backbone of the economy. The E-commerce platform also had spurred to the greatest extent and have taken benefit of the situation and now they are eying on this particular category to grab the competitive market. In this competition Flipkart has planned to come out with the strategy to provide more than 2000 products delivery in just 90 minutes which includes Grocery, Fresh, Dairy, Meat, Mobiles, Electronics Accessories, Stationery Items and Home Accessories in the first phase. They have not yet disclosed the launched date but they would be soon starting in the year 2020 itself. Consumers can choose to order in the next 90 minutes or book a 2-hour slot as per their convenience. Customers can place orders any time of the day, and get their orders delivered between 6 am to midnight; starting with a minimum delivery fee Rs 29. Flipkart will launch its services in selected locations in Bengaluru including Whitefield, Panathur, HSR Layout, BTM Layout, Banashankari, KR Puram and Indiranagar. Then slowing and steadily they would percolate to other locations across country with metro cities. The delivery partner would be Shadowfax. The company has plans to move to a hybrid model that would leverage kirana stores to fulfill orders. It could also rope in its logistics arm Ekart for the purpose. This is a great model for India as households of all sizes are already used to their neighborhood Kirana stores.
Flipkart has started grocery service in the year 2016 and shutdown the services in just four months of launch, as it saw poor margins and demand. Let’s see how this new strategy would work. Flipkart has thought of entering in this competitive market to give a fight to Amazon Pantry services, Bigbasket, Grofers as well as Jiomart which has newly entered into the market. Very soon we may find the other players also coming with new strategy to survive in this competitive market. Ultimately it is going to be beneficial to the customers as they would get lot of options to choose from as well as better services by the players to retain the customers.
Dr. Sunil Patel, Professor, Unitedworld School of Business (UWSB)
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