Daily commerce in India goes online with Goodbox
There are many interesting trends emerging in India leading to new ways of commerce — especially in daily commerce. These are some of those trends:
→ Consumers have moved to smart phones from using desktops
→ Mobile phones are getting cheaper every quarter
→ Internet on mobile keeps getting cheaper and is expected to get even cheaper with Reliance’s 4G foray
→ Over 150 million users in India use some form of Internet-based messenger — which means that chat is a way of life for almost every smart phone user
What comprises Daily Commerce in India?
Consumers spend on products, long-tail services and local services. It’s the local services that they use most often — almost daily or multiple times in a day. Examples of daily commerce in India would be neighbourhood supermarkets, restaurants, laundry services, college or office canteens, local commute etc. This forms the daily commerce in the life of the majority. Then you have mid frequency services like recharges, bill payments, entertainment related services.
Aggregators have been able to make a very small dent in this commerce because of one big reason — trust. Consumers have been buying from these local businesses / stores since decades and there’s a bond of familiarity. The business knows them by face and sometimes by name. This is a bond that’s difficult to break for aggregators.
Local businesses in India want to go online
These local businesses are getting e-savvy and want to adopt new technologies. They have seen the dent e-commerce start-ups made on brick-and-mortar folks dealing with product commerce. They understand that the consumer prefers online booking and e-payments. But, today, they lack a way to sell online without external help. Selling online on mobile requires a mobile presence — something that local businesses know very little about. What they do know is that they can’t do it themselves. Even if they do go mobile with an app, they understand that their consumers won’t download just their app.
If we mash up all the trends highlighted above, this is what you get — consumers using chat thanks to internet on mobile and smart phones being cheap + consumers having trust in local businesses over aggregators as far as daily commerce in India is concerned + local businesses wanting to sell online and adopt the new.
This leaves an interesting gap in daily commerce in India — taking the businesses online via mobile and allowing consumers to chat with multiple local businesses on one app.
One of the largest opportunities, therefore, is to democratise app technology that can bridge the gap between consumers and their trusted local businesses. The ability for local businesses to start selling on app without going through the headache of creating, maintaining and marketing an app & letting consumers buying from all their trusted businesses with one app.
Goodbox — The Daily Commerce app for India
The above gap is what Goodbox is trying to address. It provides businesses an app presence — making them app-commerce ready within 5 minutes (Goodbox Partner App). For consumers, it provides them a single app to buy from all their trusted stores / businesses.
A service like Goodbox enables rather than doing things. It enables and democratises technology for every business rather than controlling every interaction a la the aggregator-led models. An approach similar to what Android did to Mobile OS platforms.
The objective will be to introduce a better way to do the daily — simplifying daily commerce for the consumer and helping the local business go online without the hassles associated with doing so.
How customers are using Goodbox
Customers are using Goodbox for various daily commerce needs. Here are some examples:
- They are ordering for groceries over chat, using the 5000+ listed products in the product catalog. Paying for it online or by cash-on-delivery. Customers sometimes have a long list of products that they keep ordering. If they were to place these orders over a call, they’d have to rattle off this long list everytime. But on Goodbox, they can place this order with one tap — simplifying the process to a great extent. There are times when the super market’s phone will keep ringing without any response. This results in a lost order for the supermarket and the customer has to re-dial again in sometime. When placed over a chat, the order is never lost.
- They are ordering groceries over chat and asking the shopkeeper to keep the product ready so they can pick it up on the way from office.
- They are calling their local supermarket and ordering over phone but requesting the business to send a payment link to them over Goodbox so they can pay online.
Restaurants / Canteen
- They are placing their order with their local restaurant / canteen over chat (using the menu) and asking them to keep it ready. This way they don’t waste time in a queue. They pre-pay for their order on Goodbox itself.
- They are placing the order for home delivery on the app and paying for it online.
- Some are ordering from the restaurant over a call and requesting them to send the receipt on the Goodbox app so they can pay for it online.
- A search for businesses in their area will throw up a list of signed-up businesses. Customers can chat with any business without having to go to Google / JustDial to look for their number. It’s super simple to place an order with any business now.
- Sometimes customers message a business at night or early in the morning. This wouldn’t be possible over a call because it’s the office phone that they would find on Google. Since the Goodbox app is installed on the phones of the owner and the staff, they don’t have any missed leads.
- Businesses are able to see the context of customers chatting with them. They can see how many times the customer has ordered with them, the amount they have spent in the past etc.
Goodbox is being used in ways that were just not possible with the current forms of communication and payment. This is giving rise to a new way to interact with your daily trusted businesses — a better way. This could one day become THE way…