Google India Partnered with several ecommerce companies organized “Great Online Shopping Festival 2012”, later this week; this event gave an opportunity to Indian consumers to purchase products on discounts offered by the various ecommerce companies partnered with Google India for GOSF.
Google India partnered with more than 90 ecommerce sites to provide discounts and offer deals to the customers. Some of the partnered sites included, Myntra, Flipkart, Ebay, Indiatimes shopping, Infibeam, Rock.in, Gitanjali Gifts, Fashionara, Caratlane, Healthkart, etc.
Does India need more GOSF?
It’s great to have things like GOSF, but there are few things that Google should have done to make event more successful and to ensure more credibility.
GOSF should have tried structuring better deals for ensuring exclusivity, it should have tried seeking more commitment from the partners, there must be budget allocated for the companies and events should be well introduced to people in advanced. There is a need of making such events a define property and activity thus there is need to capitalize on all festivals in India. With GOSF owned by Google, it becomes responsibility of Google to ensure consumer satisfaction; it should ensure that people should be happy. GOSF lacked in categorizing these products. There are companies which don’t need any exposure, are well established and are popular among the Indian customers, Google should try exposing newer companies or startups through such events this will add more credibility and will help these startups to grow.
Such events and experimentation is good for Indian Online retail industry, not only Google but other social newtworking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, etc should also come up with such ideas to promote Online Retail in the country.
Iamwire conducted a research and found that almost all e-commerce companies came up with heavy discounts and offered various deals to attract the customers and created a significant impact on Indian Ecommerce market.
Arun Sirdeshmukh, CEO, Fashionara said, “GOSF like event happened first time in India and created a significant impact on ecommerce in the country, In India there is a lot of people moving towards online shopping, it was a right and exact opportunity for us as a online retailer and for people to shop online, and also for creating awareness among people about online shopping.”
Jabong got very positive response from GOSF and experienced spike in traffic and conversion, Infibeam saw 300% increase in sales, Snapdeal experienced a jump of more than 60% in the daily traffic and a proportional increase in sales as well. Myntra witnessed many first time shoppers engaging in high value transactions and warming up to the idea of online shopping and experienced 150% jump in sales, Fashionara experienced 300-400% increase in traffic and lot of mobility on site, Caratlane witnessed 2.5 times increase in sales, Allschoolstuff experienced 300% growth in traffic & 100% transactions, GitanjaliGifts also experienced 5-6 times increase in sales on 12-12-12 compared to regular day sales, Zivame & Utsav Fashion also experienced lot of traction and traffic on their sites.
Sundeep Malhotra, Founder & CEO, HomeShop18, speaking about HomeShop18’s performance at GOSF said, “The Greatest Online Shopping Festival has surely created a buzz in the overall e-retail industry in India. Since this initiative was taken for the first time in this industry domain, there were debates whether it will work or not. But it worked really well for us in terms of site visits, new registration, orders and conversation rate. The response was so phenomenal throughout the day that our traffic grew by 300% and the sales doubled.”
Cuponation India, discount offering site felt that retailers who participated in this festival saw significant rise in their traffic as well as revenues it saw a 200% increase in traffic with mostly new users visiting out website in search of free coupon codes and maximum looking for Electronics and Fashion category. Customers visiting website were mainly focused on deals related to GOSF.
Category that performed the best
For Myntra Apparel and footwear performed the best, followed by accessories and home décor, Jabong found apparel and house goods were the main gainers for them, for Timtara mobiles, home electronics and laptops did best, diamond jewellery was hit for Caratlane & GitanjaliGifts, Infibeam experienced significant sale of Electronic items and Books, Snapdeal experienced maximum response in the Fashion categories like Apparel, Perfumes & Beauty in addition to the Mobiles & Computers and HomeShop18 found apparels, jewelry, footwear and accessories as hot selling items during the day and also many its products in the apparels and electronic categories were sold out before the day ended.
Was consumer acquisition Cost more than Sales?
Maximum participatory sites experienced that customer acquisition cost was much lower then what it is on normal days. Speaking on the consumer acquisition cost Deepak Tulsian, Business Head – Ecommerce, E-Gitanjali Ltd said, “We saw an increased competition in SEM on 12th, as most ecommerce players increased their digital budget for the day and bid aggressively. The search keywords and display ads were 1.5 times expensive compared to regular days. However, the cost was justified, as the conversion rate almost doubled due to exclusive GOSF offers and promotions. Overall, our customer acquisition cost went down by 20% on that day.”
For Timtara consumer acquisition was about 30% of what it normally is, Prashant Tandon, Managing Director, Healthkart said, “Just a 1 day customer acquisition cost would not be the right way to look at it. However, in the overall context, we expect that our CPA would have benefitted by 30-40% thanks to this being an ecosystem growth initiative led by Google”. Myntra felt that average acquisition cost was lower by 30-40% compared to other days, Caratlane & HomeShop18 also felt that customer acquisition cost was Much lower about 1/3rd of what it is on usual days, for Zivame also Cost came down by 60%.
Prashant Katyal, CEO, Utsav Fashion said, “Google created a lot of click-through opportunities for the festival and drove new visits. New visits came with an increased bounce rate, if traffic had not been driven by Google this would have resulted in a higher acquisition costs, however the festival micro site drove significant ‘non-paid’ traffic which compensated and brought the acquisition costs very low.”
Customer Response, Old VS New Customers
All the companies experienced significant traffic coming up to their sites which was much higher then what it normally is, maximum found large number customers were new. Allschoolstuff, Zivame, Infibeam, GitanjaliGifts, experienced that 75% of the total customers were new. Timatara found 70% of customers were new, Utsav Fashion got 60% new customers, where as HomeShop18 witnessed that 65% of its total customers were new, Snapdeal & Caratlane found 50% jump in new user subscriptions, Fashionara got 50-60% new customers, and Healthkart found that 50-55% of the transactions were from new customers.
Are Indian online retailers interested for more such events?
Looking at the customer response maximum online e retailers felt that such events are needed for creating awareness among people about online shopping and to promote online shopping in India.
Mukesh Bansal, CEO, Myntra said, “GOSF has proved to be a great platform, both for e-commerce companies and customers, as they see value in such shopping festivals. We look forward to partnering with GOSF again in 2013”
Ecommerce companies like Jabong, Timtara, Zivame, HomeShop18, Healthkart, Infibeam, Utsav Fashion, Fashionara, Allschoolstuff, Caratlane, etc said that they would be very much interested in participating in such events that promote ecommerce in India.
Introduction of such events in a country like India where Ecommerce is at nascent stage is like a stepping stone for promoting online shopping among people and for increasing sales for the retailers. GOSF created a lot of customer interest in online shopping with lot of excitement among the customers. It was a great day for the e-commerce ecosystem, and will help to boost adoption of online shopping in India. Though it was 1st time in India still the stats show that GOSF managed to create a buzz for online shopping and for making internet users surf through various sites with intent to make a purchase.