According to the recent report of CII & Deloitte , the Indian e-commerce size is projected to grow from 2.9 billion U.S. dollars in 2012 to 101.9 billion US dollars in 2020.
(Image source: The Economic Times)
Not only internet users are expected to grow by 2020 but the percentage of them shopping online by 2020 is predicted to be 30%. Another report by statista says, In 2015, the retail e-commerce sale in India as a percent of total retail sales in the country was 0.9% and is expected to grow to 1.4% by 2018. Thus, more and more retailers are trying to tap this market, but not everyone has enough expertise, money and time to invest in creating and managing the online store. Purple Stores is a DIY eCommerce platform designed specifically for the Indian Merchants which allows them to run their own eCommerce platform with ease at an affordable price and on-demand technical support.
The Ideation Point to The Creation of Purple Stores
The baby step for the venture was taken back in 2009 as a SEO company serving customers in the UK, primarily from ecommerce space, which further magento expertised in 2009.
Amit recalled their old days saying, what generated their idea of forming Purple Store was a conversation with a husband-wife duo who wanted to start their own organic cosmetics label. And during the conversation, he, then, realized the need for a low-cost offering (Ecommerce solution) which is a one stop shop for the Indian SMEs.
Today they are working with some of the popular retail brands helping them grow online. The team claims that their diverse experience and “skin in the game” fee structure ensures alignment of goals for the client.
Amit Jain the founder of Purple Stores, is an engineer from IIT Delhi, MBA from SP Jain Mumbai and worked with Fortune 5 company for 8 years in operations, finance, and risk before taking the entrepreneurial plunge. He is a certified 6 sigma black belt and LEAN expert. Amit is also an active speaker and contributor in the e-commerce space in India.
Presently, Purple Stores has 12 members in their team and is headquartered in Okhla, Gurgaon.
Image: Team PurpleStores
What’s All In The Cart
Purple Stores is a SaaS platform which provides each Merchant a separate user account while using the common application and infrastructure. Companies can choose from hundreds of unique templates to create their website and start selling services online instantly. Once the merchant sign up, he/she gets a unique domain name and website front, chosen from predesigned design themes or 100 percent customised theme. Hence, merchants can get going in a matter of minutes with their own store which is easy to manage even by a computer novice.
The venture brings an end to end solution including services such as product management, catalog design, logistic support, payment gateway, site management, internet marketing, etc. Apart from providing designing and content development services at hourly rates, purple stores gives an ‘A La Cart’ feature to add services on demand. Hence, clients pay what they use. The company also allows its online store merchants to analyse their performance via google analytics. The venture provides a first-hand experience of technological support and global best practices to all its clients.
Clients Claim INR 2.5 Cr Turnover Per Month
Purple Stores is a self-funded venture and is currently serving around, mostly selling apparels and groceries, in India with a turnover of almost 2.5Cr per month via Purple Stores e-commerce platform.
Purple Stores has also leveraged successful customer acquisition initiatives for companies such as BeeBay(India), ART4U (India), Brand Alley (UK) and Jacaranda living (US).
Challenges Faced And Marketing Strategies
One of the most common problems faced by Purple Stores is the training of the client and unavailability of skilled resources on the part of their clients. But, Purple Stores is designed and developed keeping in a view that, merchants are businessmen and not techies. They set up the store for their client and upload first 20 products and train them and their team to manage the store. Currently, the team provides on-demand dedicated technical support to their clients via phone calls. But to tackle this issue more feasibly and making it a wonderful experience for their client, their team of experts keeps on revamping the strategy.
“There is no alternative to hard work, perseverance, and sound business model. These are lot more relevant in today’s world where new competition comes up every day backed by the free flow of investor’s money which is bound to chase bottom time instead of the top line… So the idea is to ride this out and be ready when the opportunity strikes”, says Amit Jain, Founder, Purple Stores.
Purple Stores is currently reaching out to its potential customer and creating brand awareness through thought leadership marketing, event and exhibitions.
Purple Stores future plans include further innovation of their technology. They want to add plug and play 3rd party integrations in their system modulation. As per founder, India continues to be attractive and will be the focus in the current year and might plan to go to international markets on later stages. The venture will keep enterprise-level functionalities in focus and plans to grow to 3000 customers the coming year compared to the current 500 registered customers.