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Trendspotting: ecommerce players leverage Sunday as key online shopping property

26-October-2015
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Trendspotting: ecommerce players leverage Sunday as key online shopping property

Three years back, ShopClues launched their most popular property titled ‘The Sunday Flea Market’ (SFM). This was based on the insight that Sundays usually see a major drop in traffic and also on the observation derived from their target audience, which is more tier II and tier III dominated. It was like an ode to ‘Shani Bazar’ and the ‘Mangal Bazar’ which happens in these markets.

Nitin Agarwal, Senior Director, Marketing, ShopClues.com said, “Post the launch of SFM, there was almost a 20-30% increase in traffic. The products displayed on sale are usually general/home utility products, things which people have been looking to replace for long. This even helped merchants to get rid of their pending inventory. The Sunday Flea Market is one of the most compelling properties today. Initially it started off as a 24 hour sale, but now due to the growing popularity, we have made it into a 48 hour sale, which starts every Saturday from 5PM to Monday 5PM.”

He further added, “We are now revamping our SFM property, it is one of the best acquisition and has the best retention capability. Usually 70-80% of the audience on our site during the Sunday Flea Market sale are old customers, so the effort is to offer them something new always. We are working towards it and have a marketing campaign lined up, which will be launched in few days.”

Swati Bhargava, co-founder, CashKaro.com pointed, “Weekends are usually dead, traffic to the e-comm sites are lowest and also across social media, there are less number of people online. That is the reason; you won’t find any big campaigns getting launched during the weekends. Those retailers, who try to establish their property during this time, usually do well. For e.g. ShopClues launched their Sunday Flea market which usually sees a 100-200% increase in transaction on Sundays as compared to the other days. One of the reasons behind this is, no one else is doing anything on that day, and so if you have a property dedicated for that day, you need to set a strong reminder. There will be curiosity and expectation of good deals, which will automatically pull traffic.”

To encash these set of customers, Snapdeal has recently launched their Sunday Value Market and OLX has also been promoting their Sunday property.  

Trend seen on Sundays:

Zafar Rais – CEO, MindShift Interactive said, “Sunday is quintessentially a family day and given the fact that we do consume so much of digital, throughout our working week, it is almost like a breather for most of us. An interesting insight that has been worked on is that consumers do tend to shop more from their workplace or in isolation from their friends, and hence to raise the sales there is an increased emphasis with special Sunday deals and offers. This holds true across categories unless the consumption is connected with family decisions such as electronic goods for the home, vehicles, etc. With the amount of data e-commerce players are constantly gathering and the constantly evolving purchasing behaviour of the Indian consumer, the need to try new routes to entice consumers and keep them coming back is a necessity today.”

Swati Nathani, Business Head, Team Pumpkin cited, “Sundays tend to be slightly slower than other days, though we have not seen extreme drop in traffic. We usually see a fall of 5%-15% on sites. One key trend that we have noticed is that women dominated sites (Home accessories, ethnic wear) tends to have far more slower Sundays than regular sites which cater to both men and women.”

Vaibhav Jain, CEO, Deco Window highlighted, "We usually experience higher traffic on the weekdays as compared to the weekends wherein we have seen a drop of approximately 30% to 40% on our website. We understand that this is owing to the weekend and less time spent on the internet. However, to combat this challenge we always run regular sales to entice our customers, be it the Mega Festive Sale or just flat discounts over the weekend. Our aim is not just to get high traffic on the website, but also convert our visitors to our customers by offering them quality products. Besides, free shipping and customization is also something which customers look for, and we try to leverage such facilities for them during weekends."

Echoing similar thoughts, Virendra Bardia, CEO, Ethnic Dukaan.com added, “Usually Saturdays and Sundays fall behind the weekdays in terms of traffic ratios. We have experienced a drop in the visitor traffic by around 11% on Saturdays and about 12% on Sundays. To keep the visitors engaged, we generally offer discounts and sales to drive more demand. We send weekend specific mails to update the customers. The trend of online coupons/discount has flourished alongside in the recent past, and big buying days are getting bigger and more volatile."

Is there a scope to capitalize on Sundays?

Bhargava of CashKaro elaborated, “These days, there is a trend of establishing properties; regarding the scope for Sundays, there is still a place for two to three more players to come in, but I don’t think, there is a full bandwagon happening. Not many would come and invest on Sundays, when there is a chance to garner more eyeballs on the other days of the week . The reason being, Sundays are usually holidays for most teams, so if there is any campaign or special deals and offers running, then there needs to be a proper backend team operating on that day, in order to ensure smooth experience to every buyer.”

Commenting on the effectiveness of Sundays, Ankita Tandon, COO-CouponDunia said, “It depends on what sort of a merchant it is. Sunday's are awesome for food ordering merchants like Foodpanda, Swiggy, and TinyOwl as they see the maximum number of orders during weekends. Generally traffic during weekends including Sundays is less as compared to weekdays. Users want to relax during week days and might not shop unless they get some sort of incentives. That is the reason merchants like Shopclues have flea markets and Snapdeal has Sunday Value Market.”

“Weekends are when crowds are usually most in malls, hypermarts and if online can bring that same experience with wider variety and better rates from the comfort of your homes, there is a valuable upside possible. We have noticed that not only ShopClues and Snapdeal come up with special sales and offers. There are other merchants as well who come up with special discounts during weekends. Like Myntra does Super Sundays, Rediff has special discounts on Sundays. Merchants who stand out during weekends/ Sundays are food ordering merchants like Foodpanda who do the maximum sales. We have even seen a jump of about 300%+ on a Sunday for ShopClues flea market,” she said.

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