Amazon.in seems to be going gung-ho in trying to attract Indian customers to their Pantry and eCommerce offerings, trying to ward off Flipcart and other Indian ecommerce startups gaining a foothold.
As of November 2016, Amazon is not just pushing eCommerce and online shopping but cashing-in on the public sentiment moving away from cash based transactions after the demonitization of ₹500 and ₹1000 rupee bank notes (pun intended!).
The Nov 2016 Go Cashless campaign
Amazon gift cards are hugely popular in the US and other western markets where gifting even small denominations like $5, $10 or $25 are hugely popular. The eGift cards one receives can be deposited into one’s Amazon account and used in-lieu of cash.
Cashing-in on the public sentiment, Amazon launched the Indian version of Gift card, which is offering upto 15% off. What this means is simple: one can add ₹ 2000 into one’s wallet by spending ₹ 1700. The only catch: one needs to use an Indian credit/debit/online bank account (International cards are not accepted)
Once, you have money in your wallet, Amazon entices you to spend. Besides hundreds of thousands of products offered in their ecommerce site, they have begun offering a “pantry”
The Pantry service is currently available in Bengaluru & Hyderabad only. The service promises a next-day delivery of a “box” of items for ₹ 20, which seems like a pretty good deal.
I decided to use the money deposited in my wallet to try out the “Pantry” in Bengaluru and was pleasantly surprised by
- Ease of ordering items offered at MRP (or below)
- 5-10% discount being offered is a gravy on top
- We live in North Bangalore and I placed the order by 7 PM on 15th
- Our box (almost) full of groceries including a bag of Atta, Sugar and other grocery items was delivered home by 4 PM the next day!
It is anyone’s guess if other digerati are going to take to Amazon’s pantry in a big way. And if it is going to be sustainable and profitable for Amazon to continue to manage the complex online and offline logistics in India, to continue offer the low-cost service.
As of now, it is a big thumbs up to Amazon!