Ahead of the festive season, over 100,000 Amazon-enabled local shops, kiranas and neighbourhood stores from across India are geared up to serve customers. More than 20,000 offline retailers and kiranas from ‘Local Shops on Amazon’ programme will be participating in their first ‘Great Indian Festival’ sale event, which would be hosted by the e-commerce giant this month. They will be catering to customers in their cities and across India, selling everything from daily essentials to large appliances as well as gifts and fresh flowers. Amazon said the programme has scaled rapidly in just 5 months; with more than 40 per cent of the sellers coming from outside the top 10 cities.
“This festive season we are focused on helping our sellers and other MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) partners grow their business and bounce back from the recent challenges,” said Manish Tiwary, vice president, Amazon India. “In the last few months, we have seen businesses of all sizes increasingly adopting the technology. We hope that this Great Indian Festival will bring them growth and success as they get ready to serve millions of across India,” he said.
Local Shops on Amazon is a new programme that was launched in April this year to help bring offline retailers, kiranas and local shops online. Today, thousands of offline retailers from Meerut to Ludhiana, Saharanpur to Surat, Indore to Ernakulum and Kanchipuram are part of the programme. This festive season, Amazon.in customers will be able to shop from some of their favourite local stores in their cities. They can get deliveries on the same day or next and also benefit from value-added services offered by these stores.
Since joining Local Shops on Amazon, Sakshi Khandelwal who runs Shiv Electronics store in North West Delhi is now able to tap customers located far away from her shop. “We have seen our online business grow month on month, but more importantly this program offers us greater control over the inventory and delivery of the products,” said Khandelwal. “With the festive season approaching, we are hiring more delivery executives and stocking up our inventory as we expect a high number of customer orders,” he added.
Amazon said the success of this programme underlines the company’s commitment to work closely with the vast network of neighbourhood stores across India. It is integrating e-commerce into their operations through focused initiatives such as Amazon Easy, I Have Space and Amazon Pay Smart Stores.
Amazon Pay Smart Store is now enabling over 15,000 neighbourhood shops to provide a contactless shopping experience to their customers. They can scan the store’s QR code using the Amazon app to explore the products available there. After selecting the products they wish to buy they can check out with Amazon Pay, which gives them a choice of using UPI, balance, or credit or debit cards. Customers can on-the-spot also convert a transaction into an EMI, and avail rewards from their banks or through Amazon Pay.
Ahead of the festive season, Amazon has also strengthened its flagship ‘I Have Space’ (IHS) delivery programme. It now comprises more than 28,000 neighbourhood and Kirana stores in close to 350 cities. Here Amazon India partners with local store owners to deliver products to customers within a 2 to 4-kilometre radius of their store, allowing them to supplement their regular income and generate more footfalls in their stores.
“Because of my earnings from the IHS programme, I could continue to support and provide for my family during this challenging time,” said Harish, owner of Bhavya Tailoring Collections in Baroda. “Seeing the benefits of the programme, last month, my brother became an IHS partner as well,” he said.